Let’s be honest - has anyone noticed? With all the excitements going on with... Berry’s farm. I go away for a while in March, come back and everything is happening as it should be; Rolo, the Shetland pony is shedding buckets of hair to the delight of the Robins and Wrens making nests.
Horse hair or wool?
Flopsey the rabbit is having his spring grooming session and is now matt free.
Hens are marching around to sort out new nesting sites
Highlands are getting fatter on fresh air...
...and Tiger, the small pig has found some valuable grass seed for his evening tipple.
Tim goes off for a well earned rest, leaving me in charge and chaos rules; Llamas get out, Sows farrow on the same day and I can’t separate them, one piglet who didn’t recognise her Mum was bitten on the back, Porkers decide to escape the wood and explore the park and then we get a storm which terrifies the newly weaned spotty piglets.
"Tell us when the storm is over"
Llama in the garden
Who would notice a missing blog in March??
My travels in March were fun. We were asked to join a sailing trip in Thailand, a real adventure as I had never headed east before, unlike the youth of today who take globe trotting in their stride - I was amused at the many young travelling with everything in a ruck sack, a few years ago they could have been our children.
With five of us on a yacht, all with differing views on global and national matters we were never short of debate. Luckily, we could all play cards! It was quite stunning with the green seas and the silence of witnessing an underwater world of colour and life.
Our home for 10 days
Next we headed to the slopes of the alps where I had forgotten I couldn’t ski. It has been many years since I had to give my weight to a stranger while he strapped me into a pair of boots and skies. I can ski when the skies are blue, the snow in perfect,and the hill is gentle. Once a snow flake or a cloud appears or there's a lump on the hill I become a gibberish wreck and vow never to ski again. No one seemed too interested as it apparently happens every time I go skiing.
Everything looking good so far...
Back to farming news. The Sows have sorted the litters, somehow feeding time changes from this...
Miss Cream leg Bar has found her dream nest for this year, behind an abandoned freezer - eBay will have to wait
The Frisian bull is sniffing the new grass outside, or is it my South Devon heifers?
The Pygmy goats are delighted the farm tours and farm experiences have started (one is an hour long and one is ½ day). They like to play key roles.
Now the tours and experiences can be booked on the Wensleydale Experience website, we have a steady stream of punters keen to get stuck in to farm life, especially the yurt holiday makers. By the time Tim has welcomed them and explained the excitements on offer, many go home knowing a lot more about farming then they ever ever knew they wanted to know! Yurt news is Number 5, Oak arrives later this month. It will have the best views of the lot from the yurt itself and I have yet to see the view from hot tub.
Hopefully the yurt population or the farm tour participants won't find themselves kidnapped from army practice manoeuvres on the hill. Berry’s has caught the eye of many TV and celebrity crews, including royalty when Prince Charles came to visit us for a couple of hours, but we haven’t been asked to stage a full blown battle before! The army had the run of Berry’s during a Monday, and apart from the odd shell case landing in the broccoli everything was left tidy for opening on Tuesday.
The Army on manoeuvres
Fairhursts at Berry’s is now open every day with the change to British Summer Time and stays open till 4.30pm, which will suit the walkers who are ready for the now famous Fairhurst cake at Berry’s.
My trusted little companion on the feeding rounds, trusted to sample every feed bucket, is sadly no longer with us. Crumpet, seen here eying up the pig food had a bad infection in a back leg joint and went down hill over night.
She is now buried in the Park with a young silver birch tree marking the spot. Her epitaph - Moments of Brilliance - not a bad epitaph for anyone.