After the Christmas Break its back to work as usual getting the chicken pens ready for our first delivery of hens. The barn always seems quiet during January, most of the animals that were here on their holidays are now back home and we have only our own flocks to greet us in the mornings. It does make the daily routine much quicker, but it wont last long as the new young birds are arriving soon.
This year as well as our popular range of Pekin Bantams and Hybrid Hens , we are really excited to be able to offer a few new breeds of hybrid and a range of vaccinated pure breeds , including: Wyandottes, Silkies, Polish, Brahma and Cochin... more details below.
In light of all the local news regarding egg production recently, maybe now is a time you are considering keeping your own chickens? If you already do then you know there is something special about collecting eggs for breakfast from your own flock in your back garden, and they taste a world apart from supermarket eggs. There is also the animal welfare considerations and using our gardens to produce our own food is a choice many of us can consider to have a positive impact on the world around us.
Mantel Farm's history is commercial egg production, there were thousands of birds in our barns for years before we moved here and the business documents from this time show it was not an easy business! When we first moved here we had a large flock of layers, kept outside in true free range conditions but after several years of supplying eggs to local business we had to reduce the numbers and keep only small flocks providing eggs for ourselves and shop customers, this was because we found we were losing too much money; the price we all pay for eggs just couldn't support the costs of keeping the hens at this scale. So, although we don't support intensive commercial farming, we also believe the only way things will change is if we all think about where and how we source our food so encouraging a viable food chain and reducing the demand for intensive farming practices.
Our next flock of Pekin Bantams will be available from Sunday 9th Feb, and our Hybrids are available from Friday 14th Feb when we will also have a new blue egg layer available. More details available on our website
We are continuously reviewing our products to make them as sustainable as possible and can now offer to refill for your Diatom pots, just bring your pot along and we will refill it with powder (this must be a Mantel Farm Diatom Pot to ensure the correct labelling is in place). For each refill you will receive a stamp on our loyalty card, so 10 stamps and you have a free refill!
Just £3.95 per bag for kiln dried hardwood chips
We have had a new delivery of woodchip, so our January fitness work-out has included shovelling woodchip into bags as well as spreading them on our own paths and pens to keep away the mud!!
With all this wet weather our woodchip is perfect to add to the chicken pens to give the girls some dry ground.
Firstly, I hope none of your bees suffered or drowned in Storm Brendan and the heavy rain a few days later. Last month I mentioned threats to all pollinators being climate change, pesticides and habitat loss; I should have included other threats being the way we manage our honey bees and pests and disease; I address that now...