Chickens

Chickens pecking in the grass, July 2012

Pigs - sadly gone now but love this photo!

Some of Octavia and Bella's offspring, July 2012

Hereford Suckler Herd

A mother with her calf, 2011

Our Livestock

Chickens

We have chickens for both egg laying and meat. All our chickens live in mobile huts which are moved around the farm. This gives the chickens plenty of fresh foraging and they have access to the pasture from first light to dusk when they take themselves back into their huts. They are protected from foxes by electric fencing which is moved each time the huts are moved. We take great care to ensure they have plenty of dry areas for dustbathing and in the winter we provide them with additional straw and dry areas. Wherever possible we provide natural shade from the rain and the sun.

Table Chickens

Our table chickens (reared for meat) are a slow growing variety and we do batches during the summer only. They live in groups of 100 or fewer birds and each batch is raised on fresh pasture. Unlike so many chickens which are finished in six weeks our chickens are matured over a period of at least twelve weeks and often up to fifteen weeks. This gives texture and flavour to the meat and well formed carcasses making excellent stock. The birds are dry plucked in a small processing plant and hung for three to four days.

Sheep

Our sheep are a hardy native breed that live outside all year round. They lamb outside in the spring and their offspring live with their mothers until they are weaned in late summer when many have already weaned themselves. The lambs are ready from the end of July throughout the autumn, they are taken to a local slaughterhouse and the meat is hung for about a week. We take some over the winter to sell as hogget in the spring.

Hereford Suckler Herd

We have a small herd of traditional Hereford cattle which calve each year outside in the spring. They stay with their mothers until they are 8 months old at which time they are weaned before the next calf is born. The traditional Hereford is a slow growing beef breed, and it produces a well marbled texture with an excellent flavour. The steers are matured over 30 months and the beef is hung for three to four weeks.

Our cattle and sheep are certified Pasture for Life

Table Chickens

Table chickens rooting around, June 2011

Sheep

Sheep coming in to be shorn, June 2012


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