The Sheep Enterprise
We run a flock of pure Blackface in the Forest of Birse. Some are bought crossed with a Blue faced Leicester to produce our own replacements for the 500 head Mule flock, which is crossed with Texel rams. Lambing is in April. Apart from flock replacements, all lambs are sold prime, some off the ewes in August, but most are finished on forage rape from October through to January.
The Cattle Enterprise
We run a closed herd of 200 Simmental cross suckler cows on a grass based system with most progeny taken to finishing or sold on as breeding heifers to other farms. Cows are over wintered on kale, silage and straw. Home produced barley is used to feed the finishing cattle. The herd calves in March through to May. The home bred heifers first calve at two and half years old.
The Arable Enterprise
The 70 ha of spring barley is grown to support the livestock enterprises with all grain and straw fed to the livestock. The arable break is also used to correct any nutrient deficits, control weeds and aid the re-establishment of good grass swards by under sowing the barley cover crop.