We have a few animals around the place. We consider them family rather than livestock which is probably not what farmers are meant to do but we don't care. We love every single one of them and make no apologies for it :)
We have lots and lots of pictures of them, some of which you can see in the gallery at the bottom of the page.
Starting three years ago with three gorgeous Muscovy ducks, we rapidly expanded our flock by adding chickens (including Araucana chickens, who lay blue eggs) and some geese. By letting some of the more motherly birds do what comes naturally and sit on eggs, our flock has expanded and diversified quite significantly. We now have a mixed bunch of chickens ranging in size, shape and colour, but all of them adorable and super friendly. Our birds are truly free range and live on grass (at least until they decimate it and we have to move them to a new patch!) which is supplemented by a mix organic grains - corn, oats, sunflower seeds, barley and wheat - which keeps them healthy and happy. We don't use any lay helper supplements - they lay as they choose and we still get plenty of beautiful fresh eggs every day. They are the happiest flock you could hope to meet and we spend a lot of time with them (including raising a few by hand) so they are very relaxed around people.
Just before Christmas, we welcomed Iris to our little farm. She is a two year old jersey cow who came to us pregnant. Late on a Saturday night just before Easter, we welcomed Bonnie to the world - beautiful jersy-Charolais cross. I know everybody says this about their own, but she really is the sweetest, cutest creature you could ever hope to meet. She chin scratc a brush and a nap, and if you didn't think cows had personalities, Iris and Bonnie will quickly prove you wrong! They are so gentle, friendly, and a bit cheeky, but if Iris feels she has not been getting enough attention, she can be a proper little diva and let you know about it. Her daughter has yet to show that side thankfully. Having a calf means means that we are getting plenty of delicious milk from Iris. Bonnie gets as much as she wants but there is plenty left over for us. We recently upcycled some of the materials we inherited when we bought the place into a great little milking parlour for Iris and out other four legged kin...Daisy and Nessa, two Alpine-Saarnen cross goats.
Both of our lady goats were pregnant when we got them, and in late March, we were over the moon to greet Boots (Daisy's boy), Star and Snow (Nessa had twins, one of each!) and they have been entertaining us ever since. If you have ever spent any time around goats, you will know how amazing they are - affectionate, playful and mischievous. When they were old enough, we rehomed Boots and Snow to a lovely family who wanted to start their own herd. We have kept Star as a companion goat and to help keep the grass down. Daisy, Nessa, Star Iris and Bonnie have become firm friends, and between them, we are getting plenty of fantastic manure that we will be able to use on the land to help grow our vegetables. This is the true essence of permaculture - nature working in harmony to produce wonderful vegetables and flowers.
Below you will see a gallery of pictures and videos. we have a lot because we can't help but keep taking photos of them because they are so adorable!