For more information about any of our farm products, contact Donna: 07985661682 / email@example.com
Hirsel Hebrideans –
Our sheep are handled regularly, receiving regular foot care and other vet-recommended treatments, as well as regular visits by us, to wherever they’re grazing on the Hirsel. This makes most of them – there are a couple of headstrong mamas! – very manageable. We don’t use dogs for herding, but have ‘bucket trained’ our flock, meaning they come to the shake of a feed bucket, or a simple call, which makes for stress free herding most of the time. (Things get a little exciting when lambing is eminent!) Many of them come to the hand for treats, and some like a bit of grooming. They graze our fields and meadows in the green months – they are important colleagues in the renovation of our meadows and woods – and are given quality feed and home-grown (pesticide free) fodder in the winter months. After hearing lots of advice about ‘don’t give them names, you’ll get too attached’ …we named all of our starter flock, and grew very attached to every one of the 12. Of course, as flock numbers quickly grew towards 60, naming all of them, has fallen to the wayside, but we still name all our pedigrees and any of them, male or female, that will be living with us for a while. And we treat all of them with affection and as much kindness as is practically possible on a farm. Our theory is that market day will be hard for everyone, whether we’re attached or not – but loving them up a little makes life a lot more easy and fun for all of us in the meantime.
Meet the cast of characters we live, work and play with on the Hirsel.
Our 2017 batch of ram lambs (born in April) are now available for sale. All of them have pedigree sires (Slipperfield Donald & his son Cairnmorrie Aidan), and four of them also have pedigree dams. The (4) full pedigrees are registered with HSS, and available for £70; the (9) half-peds are available for £60. All dams and sires are on the farm, and available for viewing. We may have female hoggets available this summer as well (call to discuss).
The welfare of our animals is of high importance to us, here and at their future homes. If you are interested in owning one of our animals, please take into consideration the way we have raised them before contacting us. Also, we prefer them to be sold in pairs, if you don’t already have a flock they will be joining, as they are social animals, and will not thrive on their own. You must have a CPH number to purchase them. Please be prepared to answer a few questions about what their lives will be like at your farm. ♥
There are many reasons to choose Hebridean hogget (18 month old lamb) or mutton (sheep over 2 years old): the breed itself is leaner, healthier, and more flavorful than many breeds, and as it’s not mass-marketed, provenance is easy to establish. In fact, if you’re eating Hirsel hogget, we may even be able to tell you its name (although that may be a bit too much information for most people!)
At the Hirsel, our animals have plenty of ranging area, grazing on grass and other pesticide/herbicide free greenery during the majority of their lives, with their diet supplemented by grains and home-grown (pest/herbicide free) fodder in the winter. We use only vet-recommended medicines on them, and give them regular check-ups for foot and other health factors. And the close relationship we have with all our animals means you can be sure that when it’s time for them to go to the butcher, it will be handled as humanely as possible. The Hebridean Sheep Society has more to say about why you should choose Hebridean over other breeds of sheep for your table.
We have sold out our 2017 farm-direct selection of Hebridean Hogget, though you may still find some of our product at Macbeth’s butchers in Forres. Check back with us in June, when we will be taking orders for this year’s batch.
Our 2017 batch of sheepskin rugs, processed for us by Skyeskyns, is nearly sold out; as of this writing (10/3/2013), we have one left available. Visit this page for information and pics, and follow us on Facebook to receive early alerts about the next batch.
With its high lanolin content and thick fibres, Hebridean fleece is known for for its weather resistant qualities, and is becoming highly prized by hand crafters too. While the breed is normally known for coming in shades of black and grey, The Hirsel’s flock has several latte-coloured ewes, as well as a few sheep that run towards red tints. We even have a ewe that gives us white lambs!
We are now sold out of our 2017 fleeces. Check back in July for our 2018 batch, or email firstname.lastname@example.org (subject: fleeces), or follow us on Facebook to be one of the first to hear when our 2018 batch is in.
Up until now, The Hirsel has only grown fodder crops for our own animals. However, this year (2018), we’re experimenting with a variety of vegetable crops to see how they respond to our particular soil and farming style. If all goes well, we’ll soon be offering our produce for sale at local farm shops, as well as selling direct from The Hirsel.