The latest news from our family run stock farm ; Garr House Farm. Plus a nudge that there is fresh beef back on Wed 2nd Feb and special orders need to reach us by 6pm on Sunday ( that's 5 pm in old time ).
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The season of multiple births and sleep deprivation is upon us ..............
Greeting me this morning on the early shift were 18 piglets on a newly farrowed sow, the calf pictured below and a pair of lambs bleating to stay in contact with their Mum. It doesn't get much better than dozily discovering new arrivals up and suckling at the calm of dawn. Occasionally there are problems and you soon snap awake prioritising.
Pigs are the easiest to deal with as we use crates for the sows to farrow (have their piglets) in and piglets are a tidy shape to be born whether head first or breach.
It still amazes me how calves sort those long limbs into the right position to find the exit and straying from domestic species; how about a giraffe calf getting into the Tom Daley position ? According to our apprentice that is what the correct presentation for being born is being called at Agricultural College these days.
Of our 18 cows and heifers put to the bull, 17 scanned in calf and to date we have 10 successful calvings with only one requiring the use of the calving jack.

Apart from this chap being yet another bull calf; a welcome early morning find. Yes ( George ), she is eating the placenta. The yellow staining under the calf was a messy attempt to spray the navel with iodine, an operation performed from behind the safety of a gate as newly calved cows are particularly defensive.
Spring hasn't only been about the arrival of new animals, with what seems to have been the longest possible gestation period, wireless broadband has arrived care of County Broadband. Sprouting from the chimney is an ariel which makes us a CAP ( Community Access Point ) receiving the signal by line of sight and passing it on to points visible.
Set up funding has come from compensation due to the expansion of Abberton reservoir, each householder then pays for the broad band width they use.There are teething problems but it does allow all family members to get an internet fix simultaneously. Further details from

A quick concreting pic' for those of you disappointed by their absence last month. Another poured concrete wall appears along the road replacing a block wall of dubious stability. The youth element of the farm staff are seen cleaning off the shuttering.
Shop News - a side of fresh, grass fed, Angus cross beef, born and reared at Garr House will be back on Wed April 2nd having hung for 14 days. If you require a special cut please let me know by 6pm Sunday. Beef boxes available at 10% off individual prices - see for details.

Every week we have fresh pork and lamb, sausages, ham, bacon and gammon produced from our own animals.

Currently there are frozen stocks of mutton and locally shot rabbit, ready skinned and jointed for £3:50 each.

Opening Times ; Fridays and Saturdays 10 am - 5 pm plus other times by arrangement. Free local delivery every Thursday.
Garr House Farm : Open Farm Day - Good Friday, April 18th

Guided tours every half hour from 11am till 4 pm ( excluding 1pm ). Tours last about 45 minutes, refreshments, BBQ and children's activities. Free parking. Donations for tours ; Adults £2, Children £1. Wear waterproof footwear for the disinfectant dip. Further details on the web site. The piglets, lambs, calves and hens look forward to meeting you !

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Garr House Farm
Colchester, Essex CO5 7RR
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