First fatteners arrive at the farm :)

First fatteners arrive at the farm :)

Hello again from windy Lincolnshire. We’re in our 3rd week now and have almost finished the unpacking 🙂 Keira got her first invite to birthday party this Saturday, they’ve all had christmas fares, parties.  To get us all in the christmas spirit we’re off to the Panto this coming sunday evening 🙂

Gloucester Old Spot Weaners

To update you on the smallholding activities, Joe and I picked up 3 Gloucester Old Spot weaners this past weekend from Norfolk. The Boars are home and starting to settle. A little skittish at first, not overly used to human interaction. But with each feed they’re getting used to me and the rattle from the feed bucket.

Our neighbour (a few hundred yards down the road), dropped in a large bag of windfalls from her orchard, so the pigs are enjoying a couple of late morning apples between them :). On top of that one of our local farmers was out on a shoot on friday, on Saturday afternoon we return home to 3 brace of pheasant and a pair of partridge. Its lovely living in the country everyone is so friendly and happy to share.

Sunday was spent dressing Pheasent and Partridge along with a couple of the larger turkeys. The birds weren’t kept whole,just skinned, boned, portioned and frozen. Between the 8 game birds a 2 turkeys there was just under 10kg of meat that went into the freezer. Should keep us going for a bit. Just 3 turkeys left now, a job the week before christmas. We’ve already decided we’re going to have goose again next year, but will raise some turkeys for the freezer anyway.

We’ve inherited a small mole problem in the main paddock. However thanks to my visit to Gillian and Ian at South Yeo Farm East in Devon (@southyeoeast on twitter) I learnt about moles and how to trap them. We invested in some traps from ebay and after several attempts at placing the traps we finally managed to catch one of them. I was surprised how large the mole was, given I’ve only seen them on TV or a book before.  The ickle chap has been put in the freezer and will serve as our snakes next feed.

Most of my Facebook and twitter followers (and those who knew me from kent) know I’m an poultry addict, having all the space here has allowed to be build on my addiction. Today I took delivery of a new incubator, and not just any incubator, a Brinsea Ova-Easy 190 which can incubate 192 chicken eggs at any one time 🙂 . The incubator is all setup and I’m running a test back of 36 eggs from my own stock, main Rhode Island Red x, but they’re some Scotts Dumpy’s, Pekins and Barbu D’Anver in their too. Hatch day will be 4th January 2012 (Happy new year).

 

Finally, the pups are doing well, they had their first set of jabs todays so will be able to outside soon. Be nice to get rid of all the poop. They’re also booked in to start dog training on the 5th Jan at a local church hall 🙂

I hope you’re enjoying the blog, any feedback is most welcome, use the comments on the blog, tweet me @slatehousefarm to email enquiries@slatehousefarm.co.uk. Until next time, Merry Christmas


Ruth Rushton

December 14, 2011at 8:38 pm

I’m so jealous of the pigs – one day i will be in a position to have some of my own. It’s lovely to hear that everyone is settling in well, you sound very settled already. Ruth (@ocean_design) x

    slatehousefarm

    December 14, 2011at 9:30 pm

    If you’re ever passing please pop in )

Gwen Kirkwood

December 14, 2011at 8:46 pm

I think I am going to enjoy following your blog. I am retired now but only a short distance from the farm on one side and my daughter’s ice cream parlour on the other so very much in touch. Son bought three Gloucester Old Spots for his small son (who has some physical problems) They hope to breed with one. Normally it is mainly dairy cows with two robots and half through the milking parlour, but we keep all calves for dairy replacements or beef. when I was young we had a bit of everything and poulty paid the wages and housekeeping but we had egg packers and a good market.

    slatehousefarm

    December 14, 2011at 9:29 pm

    Thanks Gwen, good luck with breeding. Where abouts are you? Diary and beef sound great

      Gwen Kirkwood

      December 17, 2011at 11:21 am

      Not easy saying much on Twitter. Your enterprise takes me back to my youth! I asked about sexing the chicks because we used to hatch with hens in the early days. Killed and skinned some young cockerils for eating – tender and make lovely chicken jelly if in a pie. Some we reared as capons for Christmas get very big. Later we had brooders and bought them in 100 at a time as day old chicks, all pullets. My son does not keep any hens now.
      We are just north of the Border in Scotland. Real dairying area but far too wet this year.
      Good luck with everything.

Kristen Samuel-Bolton

December 16, 2011at 1:40 pm

Found your old blog on a wander round the web looking for garden poultry.. then moved over here.. will certainly come back to share in your news and perhaps ask questions..
Good luck with everything..

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1 week ago

Our 2018 Lamb is almost ready, happy to take your order, contact as per the image. Buy with confidence with our level 5 food business rating. Thank you.

1 week ago

Our 2018 Lamb is almost ready, happy to take your order, contact as per the image. Buy with confidence with our level 5 food business rating. Thank you.

2 weeks ago

Not bothered with turkey's this year, their stupidity makes rearing a pain, so raising some extra large chickens instead

3 weeks ago

Crab apple jelly finished, amazing colour

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