30th April 2016
Some new faces (or snouts!) for Mornacott

We had some new arrivals this afternoon fresh from the market at Sedgmoor.  Seven new pigs (Doc, Grumpy, Sleepy, Sneezy, Bashful, Happy and Dopey) moved into new quarters that had been prepared for them over the last few weeks.

We had some new arrivals this afternoon fresh from the market at Sedgmoor. Seven new pigs (Doc, Grumpy, Sleepy, Sneezy, Bashful, Happy and Dopey) moved into new quarters that had been prepared for them over the last few weeks. Absolutely exhausted from their stressful day at the market they quickly settled in and after a troughfull of grub they were soon snoring peacefully in the thick bed of straw that had been prepared for them. Their new home is easily accessed from the holiday cottages and away from the more machinery focused areas of the farming operation providing a safe environment for our younger guests to learn about animal husbandry.     


3rd April 2016
First of the new born lambs

With the calving season now well underway, with 20 successful births to date, yesterday saw the arrival of our first new-born lambs with a pair and a singleton born to two proud mothers.

With the calving season now well underway, with 20 successful births to date, yesterday saw the arrival of our first new-born lambs with a pair and a singleton born to two proud mothers. Thankfully the weather over the next few days is forecast to be pretty kind as we're expecting a pretty busy period over the next few days with multiple new births of lambs and calves. 


31st March 2016
Wind and water sometimes don't mix!

Upon our Spring inspection of the lake, we were alarmed to see that a large amount of bank erosion had occurred to the island. We believe this has been caused by the high water levels and strong winds this winter.

Upon our Spring inspection of the lake, we were alarmed to see that a large amount of bank erosion had occurred to the island. We believe this has been caused by the high water levels and strong winds this winter. To prevent any further erosion and to protect the bank we have created a woven willow barrier more commonly seen on chalk streams in Hampshire. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that this will do the trick. Within hours of completing the barriers we noticed the carp are taking great interest in them and we think they may use them to spawn against. Our future plans are to back fill them with soil and start to plant up these areas with aquatic plants to attract even more wildlife.


21st March 2016
Potholes are a pain!

 Potholes (which on some local roads are now more akin to trenches!) are one of our biggest bugbears currently.  In the middle of last year a mile long stretch of the Mornacott Road was, over several days, marked up for repair. 

Whilst we all love to complain about “Government”, both local and national (with “European Government” adding a third interesting dimension currently!), the biggest frustration for us has to relate to the lack of one of the few meaningful services that our local Council is “contracted” to supply. Potholes (which on some local roads are now more akin to trenches!) are one of our biggest bugbears currently. In the middle of last year a mile long stretch of the Mornacott Road was, over several days, marked up for repair with lots of white highways’ agency markings (at, we’d imagine, a not insubstantial cost to the taxpayer). As the year wore on the markings were washed away and still the holes remained. In December highways’ contractors arrived and repaired and replaced large sections of a little used adjoining road which was in far better condition.

Now, having variously been informed on enquiry to the local Highways’ Department that the contractors had reported the job completed (probably the wrong job as it turns out!) and that the work hasn’t been done as a “funding request” needs to be submitted, we’re living in hope that that something more than just slopping muck into the holes for it to disappear after the first heavy shower (as has happened for the last four years) might actually be done!      


29th February 2016
Hedge Cutting Challenge

February used to be one of the quietest months at Mornacott with the shoot season over and lambing and calving not yet underway.  However, hedge cutting now needs to be completed by 1st March.

February used to be one of the quietest months at Mornacott with the shoot season over and lambing and calving not yet underway. However in its' usual inept manner the EU amended a regulation for 2015 which further restricted the periods in which hedges can be cut prohibiting the cutting of these between 1st March and 31st August.  So at the wettest times of the year when cutting operations are most difficult we now have to cut hedges to avoid doing so during the prohibited period.  The last of the hedge cutting has now been completed and we will now be clearing up the cuttings over the next few months using the bigger spoil for biomass fuel and logs and chipping and burning up the brash.

 

 


29th January 2016
A big thank you to our beaters

Our busiest shoot season yet came to a close with the traditional Beaters' Day.

 Our busiest shoot season yet came to a close with the traditional Beaters'  Day.  Our team of beaters were able to enjoy a day of shooting and/or beating followed by a Mornacott reared turkey dinner with all the trimmings.  Served by Mornacott staff, this is just a small token of our appreciation for the hard work and dedication our beaters have yet again shown, whilst enduring some arduous weather conditions and contributing to yet another highly successful season at Mornacott.


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