Hoo's News

Updates from the world of Hoo's Herd - see more at www.hoosherd.co.uk

<p>“Fab roast leg of lamb for first roast of the season yesterday courtesy of Hoosherd” - a happy customer!</p>

“Fab roast leg of lamb for first roast of the season yesterday courtesy of Hoosherd” - a happy customer!

Posted 239 weeks ago

Sheep go walkabout...

One of our ewes & her lamb wriggled out of their Nettleden paddock last week & went for an explore…. After a pitstop at the St Margarets Buddhist Monastery, they made it as far as the Fourways Garden Centre before deciding that enough was enough…. Home now….

Posted 244 weeks ago
<p>Mum cleaning her 2013 calf whilst her 2014 calf looks on.</p>

Mum cleaning her 2013 calf whilst her 2014 calf looks on.

Posted 244 weeks ago

Well, this is going to be interesting....

2 injured bulls, from fighting - 1 with an injured shoulder, t'other with a strained back leg. Bed rest & separation required…. whilst our 12 month old bull (Hoo’s Herd Randy Newman) gets his day in the spotlight

Posted 244 weeks ago
<p>Surprise calf from 16 month old mother doing very well (as is his mum!)</p>

Surprise calf from 16 month old mother doing very well (as is his mum!)

Posted 245 weeks ago

Spoke too soon....

Just discovered a new calf, from one of our youngsters who (as far as we were aware) has not been near a bull since early 2013…. Baffling….

Posted 246 weeks ago

Last calf of the season, born last night

Last calf of the season, born last night, to #75 (Delyth or Ceinwen, can’t remember which is which). Looks like a heifer.

Posted 246 weeks ago

Bella's calf...

Born dead - either a overly-prolonged labour or something wrong with the calf. Sad but that’s farming….

Posted 247 weeks ago
<p>Bella about to pop! Her calf must be imminent…..</p>

Bella about to pop! Her calf must be imminent…..

Posted 248 weeks ago

Calf #22 born today

A beautiful little heifer calf, from mother tagged #72 (who is either Delyth or Ceinwen, I never can remember which….)

Posted 249 weeks ago

Hoosherd sheep seen in Nottinghamshire??

Laila and Mathew and fellow Indigo Braves have taken possession of 8 of our ewes plus lambs at foot plus some hoggets and Wallace the Ram. They couldn’t have picked a better home!

Posted 249 weeks ago
<p>Lambs growing fast!</p>

Lambs growing fast!

Posted 250 weeks ago
Posted 252 weeks ago
<p>Another calf! Details to follow</p>

Another calf! Details to follow

Posted 253 weeks ago

Dead lamb

Found a lamb last night staggering around - tetanus, had to be put out of its misery. Must get better at pre-birth vaccinating…. 33 surviving.

Posted 253 weeks ago

Snowflake's calf is a boy

Tagged #19

Posted 254 weeks ago

Lambing comes to an end for 2014

The final tally - 35 from 22, with 34 surviving. Seems to be more boys than girls.

Posted 254 weeks ago
<p>Another calf! Good ol' />

Another calf! Good ol'Snowflake, great mum.

Posted 254 weeks ago
<p>29 lambs from 18 ewes, 4 to go</p>

29 lambs from 18 ewes, 4 to go

Posted 254 weeks ago
<p>Calf #18, just over 24 hours old</p>

Calf #18, just over 24 hours old

Posted 254 weeks ago
<p>Great insight into the reality and history of British beef. Catch it whilst you can.</p>

Great insight into the reality and history of British beef. Catch it whilst you can.

Posted 255 weeks ago

New calf!

Born this morning, looks like a male.

Posted 255 weeks ago

Dead lamb

Found a dead lamb yesterday morning, no obvious injury - one of those things I guess.

Posted 255 weeks ago
<p>Bluebells in all their glory here @hoosherd</p>

Bluebells in all their glory here @hoosherd

Posted 255 weeks ago

Lambs - they keep on coming!

More lambs than we can shake a stick at…. Must be mid-twenties at least, over halfway. Still on a “no touch natural” basis.

Posted 256 weeks ago

12 lambs this evening

Another set of twins and a single.

Posted 257 weeks ago

First calf of 2014 is definitely a girl

Tagged this morning, number 17.

Posted 257 weeks ago

Popping out thick'n'fast

9 lambs in our first 24 hours, from 5 sheep. Go girls! So far, very un-Lambing Live (although Becca does have a passing resemblance to Kate Humble…), in the sense: no human intervention required so far.

Posted 257 weeks ago

And the second lamb joins its sibling...

Posted 257 weeks ago

And the first lamb of 2014....

Born today, poignantly from a ewe that we saved from death’s door last summer.

Posted 257 weeks ago
<p>First calf of the season! Amy is the mum.</p>

First calf of the season! Amy is the mum.

Posted 257 weeks ago
<p>Happy calves</p>

Happy calves

Posted 262 weeks ago
<p>A rare dry morning!</p>

A rare dry morning!

Posted 264 weeks ago

Fresh lamb

We have some lamb back from the butcher, all vacuum-packed so fine for the fridge until 23rd Dec. Chops, cutlets, half-legs, and a limited amount of breast, kidneys and neck fillet - being Shetland lamb, that’s all the cuts available as they don’t put on enough weight until their second (hogget) year.

Let us know if you would like some. It’s also in the Village Shop.

Matthew, Becca and Fergus

Posted 274 weeks ago

Barry is officially a White Park Bull!

After a few nervous weeks (for us, rather than him), we heard today that Hoo’s Herd Barry is officially fit to be classified a pedigree White Park bull. Time to put him through his paces!

Posted 278 weeks ago
<p>A splendid specimen, we think. This one weighed in at over 320kg d/w. Now with @TheButcheryLtd</p>

A splendid specimen, we think. This one weighed in at over 320kg d/w. Now with @TheButcheryLtd

Posted 279 weeks ago
<p>Hopefully the next 2 bulls @hoosherd, just waiting to hear whether Barry has passed his test….</p>

Hopefully the next 2 bulls @hoosherd, just waiting to hear whether Barry has passed his test….

Posted 282 weeks ago
Posted 286 weeks ago
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Fingers crossed for Barry....

Waiting for official feedback on his genetics (checking for genuine White Park-ness) and measurements (does he make the grade to be a classified White Park bull?)….

Posted 286 weeks ago
<p>Dog attack victim: poor lamb the victim of a couple of nips from a walker’s dog which then developed into a maggot infestation, cheating death by a whisker. On the mend thankfully! Our 4th such victim, of which 3 died - keep dogs on leads near sheep, however well-trained…..</p>

Dog attack victim: poor lamb the victim of a couple of nips from a walker’s dog which then developed into a maggot infestation, cheating death by a whisker. On the mend thankfully! Our 4th such victim, of which 3 died - keep dogs on leads near sheep, however well-trained…..

Posted 286 weeks ago

The big day for Barry arrives....

Lawrence Alderson of the White Park Cattle Society arrives tomorrow to inspect Barry and check his genetics courtesy of his mum, Cadzow Amy. Hooves crossed!

Posted 287 weeks ago

Hoo's Herd Barry White - a bit more context

We’ve raised Barry White (so named due to his noticeably deep voice…) from when he was a few months old, arriving as a “calf at foot” with his mum Cadzow Amy. The breed standard is set and controlled by the White Park Cattle Society, and although bulls are in short supply, they are rigorously controlled to make sure they are big enough, and conform genetically as well as physically to the look that is associated with the breed. The aim is that the breed continues into the future with the right-looking, and healthy, blood lines.

As Barry is now just two, he is starting to mature physically and to compete with our existing stock bull (Smoile Norman) for the ladies. Sooner or later they will fight (probably next year as Barry is still a lot smaller than Norman), so they will eventually have to part company. If Barry is officially assessed as making the grade, then he will be instantly more valuable than as pure meat, and we then have a decision to make as to whether to keep him (and sell Norman) or sell him - or split the cows between them. If he doesn’t make the grade, then he will end up at the butchers - such is farming.

Like a typical teenager, Barry is oblivious to the impending examination which could determine, GCSE-style, his path in life, and is only interested in sex! Norman though is so far successfully keeping him at bay and leaving him very frustrated….

Posted 294 weeks ago
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<p>Final (heifer) calf of the year tagged #16, looking lovely this evening.</p>

Final (heifer) calf of the year tagged #16, looking lovely this evening.

Posted 294 weeks ago

Final calf of the year

Calf born this morning doing very well this evening. That’s it folks for another season!

Posted 295 weeks ago
<p>4 of this year’s calves, looking pretty damn fine this morning. I wonder what the collective noun is to describe a group of calves?</p>

4 of this year’s calves, looking pretty damn fine this morning. I wonder what the collective noun is to describe a group of calves?

Posted 296 weeks ago
Posted 297 weeks ago

Haylage Part 1

Happiness is seeing 1st 38 bales wrapped & stacked, tks to Mike Stevens. Another 120+ needed before we can rest easy for winter.

Posted 297 weeks ago
<p>Calf #15 successfully suckling, always a heartening sight</p>

Calf #15 successfully suckling, always a heartening sight

Posted 297 weeks ago

Showing category "Farming in the media" (Show all posts)

The Importance of Pasture-fed Animals

Posted by Matthew Hargreaves on Friday, December 21, 2012, In : Farming in the media 
Here at Hoo's Herd, we feed our animals grass - year-round - whereas the vast majority of the beef and sheep industry relies on grain to feed the animals that produce the meat we see in supermarkets and at the butcher's.

There are well-documented issues with this mainstream way of production - mostly in terms of efficiency and environmental impact, requiring somewhere between 7 and 10 calories of animal feed to make just 1 calorie of food for human consumption; large areas of farmland are r...

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Kate Humble and Adam Henson - a plug

Posted by Matthew Hargreaves on Thursday, December 20, 2012, In : Farming in the media 
I'm not naturally a fan of the Telegraph, but I find Kate Humble's periodic updates (here) a good read and I'd love to be able to do something similar here at Hoo's Herd. This article in particular was very apt, seeing as we too are about to take delivery of our first tractor, an early 80s Massey Ferguson complete with loader and topper. I'm not sure who is more excited - Fergus or me, or my two sons (aged 8 and 11)! Becca just rolls her eyes, but I've urged her to read Kate's article for an ...
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