Sunday, March 29, 2009

The first pork

Got the first of our pigs back this week 46kgs of beautiful sweet pork. A renowned local butcher did the hanging and cutting and commented they were good which means a lot to us as we have put a lot of effort in trying to get it right.

Had our first piece of belly last night .... yum ... Roast potatoes cooked in the fat, you can see why dripping used to be so popular, the stuff off your standard crate/shed reared pig on fast grower rations doesn't compare.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Iggy and Hazel Escape!

The proxy mother is causing more shenanigans. Bedtime animal check found these two in another field having scrambled over a bit of bank. Cow hurdlesn nuts and halter to the rescue and another piece of hedging to add to the list

Friday, March 27, 2009

Milking Devons

Been milking Heather a month now and been using her milk to make all manner of things and are now up to a gallon a day of creamy raw milk mostly off grass with a couple of handfuls of organic nuts for enticements.

Some of the women in the village have been passing on tips for clotted cream making, have also managed yogurt and the skimmed goes into making a really rich bread with a nutty crust. First attempt at butter has failed but we creamed some sugar in and made the cream into lemon cake .... it worked. The picture is of a batch of cream.

Not bad for a Devon first time calver believed by many to be a beef only breed. Some know them to be a multipurpose cow and to have very rich milk, which I have heard called "double gold top"

Problems though with Iggy the
"Milk thief" suckling two mums. He was caught in the act and now greets his second mum across 3 strands of electric fence styled after the border wires Steve McQueen tried to jump in the Great Escape. Hope this will be effective they did not like being split up and Heather, a willing accomplice in the matter has been watching "her" calf over the fence.

Monday, March 16, 2009

New Arrival

Hooray Hazel has given birth to Iggy.

Been on tenterhooks for two weeks waiting to see how she turned out after death of the previous calf so have rewarded selves with sleeping all night.

New heifer to be added quite soon to be named Honey .... Next challenge a bull

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Our first calf

Our first calf arrived today dead on arrival a month earlier than pd' absolutely gutted hadn't even got round to naming mum

It was a cracking sized bull calf and got stuck on the way out one foreleg and head and dead when we found him. Vet assisted getting the rest of him, the mother has been in the corner of the field all day looking rightly glum.

Been milking the mother out and will see what happens next with her.

Double portion of grog tonight me thinks

Lambs on the other hand we did alright with, so far 12 lambs from 9 of our 10 ewes despite them lambing outside when the snow started. One missed, a first timer so we will give her another chance next year.

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Chapel Bank Farm Blog by Derek Wells is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales License.
Based on a work at www.chapelbankfarm.co.uk.