What the cows over-herd!

01 Jan

What the cows over-herd!

The cows over-herd someone say “a cow is just a cow isn’t it?” Well, no it isn’t and here at Fishers Farm Park, we have different breeds, who are all very different. Join us on a journey to find out more about our herds…..

Highland cows

Everyone knows and adores highland cows. Our three highland cows are Isla, Arya and Flora, highland cows are a lovely rustic and hardy breed from the Highlands of Scotland, that can withstand the cold temperatures.

They are known for their long horns and shaggy coats and it is no cow-incidence that they are very popular for shows, photos and cattle memorabilia as they are such a beautiful breed of cow.

Like most cows they are pregnant for 9 months, the same as us. (Though their babies or calves are a lot larger and hairier than ours! Well, most of the time)

These cows descend from an older breed of cow called “Hamitic longhorns” that date back to the Neolithic farming time during the second millennium. Now, that is a while ago!

Historically Highland cows were kept as house cows. Can you believe that? That is one large pet! Could you imagine getting one in our of our modern townhouses?

A group of cows are called a “herd” but a group of highlands are called a “Fold” (bet you hadn’t HERD that before!) this is because in the winter highland cows lived in stone shelters called folds.

Belted Galloway:

Our Belted Galloway are Cupcake, Hamish, Bentley (the bull) and two younger males, known as “steers”.

Belted Galloway are a traditional Scottish Breed of cattle and they get their name from the Galloway region of Scotland, where they come from.

They are a friendly breed of cow and people love them, because of their beautiful white “belt” around their bellies, which is, funnily enough, where they get their name from.

Belted Galloway cows are traditionally black and white though you may also see colourings which are creamy blond colour and silver, knows as “red” and “dun”.

They naturally don’t have horns, which is know as “polled” and have lovely long coats to keep them snug and warm.

Sussex Cows

Sussex Cows are a British breed of cattle from Kent, Surrey and of course Sussex.

They have a rich red-brown coat with white tips on their tail, they are medium in size and those with horns, generally have white horns.

This breed of cow was traditionally used as a draught breed which helped pull equipment, such as trailers, ploughs, waggons and carts on farms.

This breed can now be found in many other parts of the world and the largest herds can be found in South Africa.

The Sussex is one of our favourites at Fishers Farm and have been homing this breed of cattle for around 8 years now.

How Fishers began farming cows

Tim and Trina started Fishers Farm Park over 30 years ago. Here is Tim’s story about how Fishers began its journey farming cows.
“Initially we had a jersey milking cow that we milked twice a day and she satisfied her calf plus all our house and farm park requirements. We then took on one of my dad’s limousin calves who was born very small and weak. My Dad warned me that if she pulled through, one day she would turn on us as Lims (as they are known) get quite boisterous, none of us believed it as she was so sweet and tame. We had her here for several years and one day Dad’s prophecy came true and she chased
a farm girl across a field, who managed to vault a gate just in time. The chase was witnessed by the Farm staff, who were laughing and cheering as the chase went on!!
Many years ago we decided to ‘rescue’ bull calves from local Dairy farms. Whilst Heifer or girl calves could join the herd and produce milk, Bull calves (unless particularly good looking) are very short lived. The idea was to give these unfortunates a worthwhile life at Fishers Farm. This is something we still do today.
We have had a Sussex herd here now for several years, they have a calf every year, are a nice local breed and generally very friendly. As with all of our animals, they have a good life in their natural surroundings. We have recently introduced a few Belted Galloways, by way of a contrast. Although great to look at, probably not our best choice as they seem to be able to walk through hedges, jump fences and climb walls if they so wish. The grass is always greener……………..!!”

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