20th May 2013
Calving Continues

As May continues so does the calving season here at Mornacott.  

As May continues so does the calving season here at Mornacott. The current standings are fifty-five calves in total with approximately thirty cows left to calf. Fortunately the weather continues to co-operate, although not terribly warm the grass has now started to grow meaning that our expectant mums can be turned out in one of the fields adjacent to the sheds and then brought in at night. The dry weather also means that as soon as the new babies are on their feet and feeding well they can then be turned out with mum. 


25th April 2013
The Joys of Spring

Spring is always a busy time here at Mornacott.  

Spring is always a busy time here at Mornacott. As well as beginning the lambing and calving seasons in earnest we also have to look at all the other jobs that need doing now winter is over. One of our main ones is to prepare the fields for stock and to decide which fields to dedicate to the growing of forage. These preparations include, liming, fertilizing and rolling pastureland before the stock are turned out, planning and planting cover crops and routine maintenance on fencing, droveways and machinery ready for the warmer weather. 


10th April 2013
Wedding Fever

Easter Weekend dawned bright and clear here at Mornacott, causing everybody to breathe a sigh of relief as Easter Saturday saw the wedding of our gamekeeper Toby to his lovely fiancee Roxy.  

Easter Weekend dawned bright and clear here at Mornacott, causing everybody to breathe a sigh of relief as Easter Saturday saw the wedding of our gamekeeper Toby to his lovely fiancee Roxy. The Wedding was held in local Bishop's Nympton Church and the reception held at Pyewell Farm. Despite a cold wind the weather was kind, the bride looked stunning and a great time was had by all!  


19th March 2013
Spring is Here

Spring is here or at least it’s meant to be! Despite a wet and windy March we have started lambing here at Mornacott.  

Spring is here or at least it’s meant to be! Despite a wet and windy March we have started lambing here at Mornacott. Our flock of eighty Pole Dorset ewes are inside and ready to lamb. Lambing is a busy time on the farm as the ewes need keeping under close surveillance to ensure both mother and baby thrive.

Lambing the ewes inside allows us to observe both mother and baby for a few days before turning them out to grass. Confinement is lasting a little longer this year due to the inclement weather but we hope to be turning out soon. 


15th March 2013
Breeding Season

Since the shoot season ‘proper’ has finished at Mornacott we have been gearing up to start our pheasant breeding programme.  

Since the shoot season ‘proper’ has finished at Mornacott we have been gearing up to start our pheasant breeding programme. Each year a number of the pheasants released have been bred and reared on the estate.

The process starts with ‘catching up’ where we set out a number of traps to ensnare our hen pheasants which we can then use for breeding. This year after the catch up traps were set, we fed the pheasants around the traps for a week, allowing them to acclimatise. After the time elapsed we closed the traps, still allowing the pheasants to feed but not to escape, this resulted in a total of 750 caught pheasants over a three day period, more than enough to start our breeding programme.  


25th January 2013
The Show must go on

So close to the end of the shoot season we thought that we’d escaped snowy shoot days but it was not to be!

So close to the end of the shoot season we thought that we’d escaped snowy shoot days but it was not to be!

Snow came fast and furious and the 19th and despite some pretty slippery roads the team due to shoot that day made it to Mornacott without mishap and the home team pulled out all the stops to ensure that they experienced a first rate day.

With guns coming from all over the country (indeed from Northern Ireland and beyond on the 19th) it seems rather strange to visitors that beaters and others have problems getting here but then our guests travel on major routes (and we’re only a short distance from the North Devon linkroad) and many of the home team have to travel across the wilds of Exmoor to reach us – nonetheless we’ve had a full complement on nearly every day which speaks volumes for the dedication and commitment of the team!

The 22nd saw another snowy day resulting in our doing some of the drives in an unusual way but that didn’t stop our guests enjoying themselves to the full and achieving a very healthy end of season bag! 


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