Suckler / beef animals
On the farm there is a small herd of Aberdeen Angus suckler cows. Calves stay with their mothers for about 9 months during which time their mothers provide them with milk. As the calf gets older they rely less and less on milk from their mothers and start to consume lots of lovely clover rich grass.
Aberdeen angus cattle are polled which means they do not have horns, they also grow thick wolly coats that keep them warm in the Winter as the breed originated from Scotland which has more harsh weather conditions.
Unlike many of the more modern breeds of cattle, angus cattle tend to have smaller carcasses so they reach their processing weights quicker. For this reason we are able to feed our cattle on a grass only based diet. This is helped by good management of the grass by topping regularly to ensure that fresh good quality grass is available for them. Grass is also reseeded regularly to provide them with a good leafy green grass, herbs and clover.
During the months from May to October extra grass on the farm is preserved and either hay or silage is made. Hay making requires a number of consecutive dry sunny days so that the grass is dried and then put into bales which are stored in the hay barn for feeding during the winter months when grass growth is not sufficient to provide animals with enough to eat. If the weather is not sunny and dry enough , the grass is cut and allowed to wilt (reduce the moisture content).
The grass is baled and wrapped in plastic and the crop ferments. Sugars in the grass are fermented to lactic acid and this reduces the pH of the grass and so preserves it for feeding to the animals during the Winter.
Our animals receive no regular treatment for worms and live a very natural life in harmony with nature on the farm.
In the Winter months if the weather is bad the animals are housed and fed on either dried grass (hay) or preserved grass (silage).