Seven adorable ponies arrived at 19 Acres, which runs along the west of Devil’s Dyke Road, this Monday.
The hardy New Forest Ponies will help create more plant variety because of their grazing habits, which will benefit even more species of wildlife. The move by CityParks to introduce the horses follows on from the grazing project’s successful use of sheep to help restore the ancient flower-rich grasslands around Brighton & Hove.
Gill Mitchell, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee, said: “I am sure the ponies will be a welcome sight on the downs and will play a useful role in helping conserve our natural heritage.”
The daily welfare of the ponies will be checked by specially trained volunteers. The council is appealing for volunteers, known as lookerers, to help look after the ponies. However, the ponies should be treated as working animals. Members of the public are being asked not to feed or pet them to prevent them from becoming over-friendly and having to be rehomed.