The number of cattle in England has fallen by 2% over the last 12 months, according to results from the Defra June agricultural survey.

The figures show that in June 2021 there were 5.1m cattle in England of which 1.8m were breeding females. Dairy cow numbers fell by 1% to 1.1m with suckler cows falling by 3% to 665,000.

Nearly all groups of cattle showed a decline in numbers, although there is a 4.7% rise in dairy females under 12 months.

Total sheep numbers are also down, falling by 3%, to 14.6m head.

Breeding ewe numbers fell by 2% to 5.2m, while the number of breeding ewes intended for culling rose by 14% to 560,000.

The number of lambs under one year old is down 4%. If the trends are replicated across the UK, it suggests the 2021 lamb crop could be the smallest in around 10 years.