The new year, and term, started on a quiet note but the Devon winter weather has got it’s act together with wind, rain and cold now making like more difficult on the farm. We have had to bring the calves in, if only to protect the pastures from damage, and there is little grass for the sheep – but our stores of last year’s fine quality hay are keeping them healthy. Our other animals have to put up with the cold and wet too so we try to keep them as dry and warm as we can.
This term our new crop of ELBS students start doing morning farm duties with us on the farm. Each week we ask them to give us some brief thoughts on their work:
Week beginning 9th February: Kyle: “The thing I liked the most about farm duty is doing something different and feeding and laying the straw in the cow’s pen. I also liked feeding and collecting the duck and chicken eggs. My least favourite thing about the farm is the geese because when you let them out and try to feed them the male goose tries to peck you. At the farm you have to clean and feed the animals.”
Keelan: “At the farm you feed the animals and clean out the pigs. My favourite part was feeding Crackle; my least favourite were feeding the geese or cleaning out the pigs.”
Ben S: “On Monday (9th) at Abbrook Farm I cleaned out the pigs as well as feeding them and separating two boars to go into Andrea’s truck. I then fed the cattle and checked their water. However, on Tuesday I didn’t do it because of activity day back at school. Wednesday: I collected the eggs from the ducks and chickens. Then we all went up to the top field to feed and check the sheep and also to check the electric fence. Thursday: I fed the guinea pigs and rabbit and checked their water, then fed the cattle. I then checked the eggs and I also fed Crackle, the sow pig. My favourite animal is the pigs and my least favourite is the geese. The best part about the farm was cleaning the pigs because I had never done it before. My least favourite bit was collecting the eggs because the poultry kept nipping my feet. Overall, it was a great week.”
Week beginning 23 February 2015: George: My name is George H, I enjoyed doing the farm work. Some of it was a challenge, like feeding the chickens and poop scooping but I did enjoy feeding the ducks and Crackle. It’s a shame that I didn’t get to clean the eggs because I think I would have been good at it. My time at the farm.
Braden: On farm duty I fed and cleaned out the pigs, it wasn’t hard and was also fun. I also fed the chickens, geese and ducks, this was also fun. I have learnt quite a lot and would like to do it again.
Week beginning 2 March 2015: Kurtis: What I enjoyed most is the sheep because it was the easiest. We learn ways to deal with and feed animals like cows, sheep, chickens, ducks and pigs.
Ethan: In my week at the farm I have learnt a lot of techniques on how to feed farm animals. My favourite farm animal to feed and water would be the sheep because it is easier than the rest.
Ollie: It has been a nice week at the farm, lots of opportunities to try different things. I enjoyed the sheep, they were very easy to work with.