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Wełniana Przystań (The Woolen Haven) is a Jizera Shepherd's hut that produces delicious cheese. Every day, around 5 am, a flock of sheep pass through the town of Świeradów-Zdrój towards the nearby meadows. The ‘kierdel’, or the flock, belongs to Łukasz Paczynski, the first shepherd of the Jizera Mountains. Shepherd Paczyński has an assistant, called juhas, and two specially trained dogs brought from Wales to guard the flock. They understand commands in English and their help is invaluable. As Paczyński says, they do the work of up to six shepherds.
For several years, the municipal authorities have been organizing specialist courses and training in breeding sheep, and the interest in the once dying-out profession has been noticeable. Perhaps, within a few years, the Lower Silesian meadows and glades will be filled with sheep again, and thanks to that we will have easy access to delicious cheese. Specialists stress that sheep grazing will have a very positive impact on the soil. Studies have confirmed the beneficial effects of animals on soil and turf. And all of this is thanks to the sheep leaving droppings and trampling, which favours fertilisation of pastures. The herd has now 120 animals, but there will be more, even 200 sheep, Paczyński says. In the shepherd's hut, which he built himself and equipped with wooden dishes, he and his assistant produce cheese every day after milking. Of course, this is done by hand. Their recipe is a secret, but the inside of the shepherd's hut is not a secret, everyone can enter and see both the production and the equipment. You can buy bryndza, a kind of soft cheese, and oscypek (literally: pinched cheese) as well as buttermilk. Recently, a new regional product, the Jizera cheese invented by shepherd Łukasz, has appeared in the market. At Świeradów Town Hall, they are pleased to see that, after 30 years, shepherding has been reactivated in the Jizera Mountains, which will certainly attract more tourists. The sheep are an ad for the town. They mow meadows and slopes for free, perfectly replacing mechanical mowers, [...] by autumn the animals will have mowed grass on several hundred hectares of land, mainly on meadows and ski slopes.