Cows in the Winter
We house all the cattle in winter if the conditions are wet, so that we do not poach the grassland. We feed silage and hay ad-lib to all livestock during winter so they maintain body condition. During the winter months the stockman's daily routine seven days a week is feeding the cattle silage, bedding up with fresh straw, checking the animal's health and seeing that they have plenty of fresh clean water.
Unlike conventional farmers we don’t use nitrogen fertiliser to aid silage yields, instead we use nitrogen fixing clovers, vetches and herbs which are sown into the pasture, this produces a naturally rich, organic silage, to feed our cattle through the winter. We produce high quality meadow hay too which encourages the new calves to start eating roughage to supplement mother's milk.
The Welfare of our Cows
We have unique rubbing posts which are in the shape of a pyramid so they can scratch their backs, and you can see the animals love them! We provide salt licks for our cattle, although like related species in the wild, cattle will lick mud or soil to take up essential minerals.
Our British White Cattle
We have a small herd of native British White Cattle on the farm. This breed is known for being hardy, with naturally strong feet and legs, producing plenty of milk and having exceptional maternal instincts. Generally they calve easily - an important trait when choosing a breed as it allows our stockmen to let the cows give birth outside, only intervening when absolutely necessary.
They are naturally healthy animals, and their hardiness is helped as all of their vulnerable areas - nose, muzzle, ears, eyes and udder are black. This avoids problems with sun exposure and is less likely to attract flies.