AYLESBURY DUCKS, SHETLAND DUCKS, PILGRIM GEESE & BLACK ORPINGTON CHICKENS
Pilgrim goose, Utility Aylesbury and Shetland ducks
Our birds are for our own use and enjoyment; we do not sell hatching eggs or birds
Utility Aylesbury ducks
Our Aylesbury ducks are reared for both meat and eggs; after years of duck keeping, a duck egg is now far preferred to those of the hen for their taste, not just through sheer greediness for their superior size. The Aylesbury is a fabulous meat breed, with a dressed weight of 6-8lbs, and they aren’t slack in the egg department either, producing an egg a day throughout the laying season; the eggs are very large and creamy white. These are the Jemima Puddleducks of the waterfowl world.
We keep a small breeding flock of Shetland ducks, the rarest duck breed in the UK, and a priority breed on the Rare Breed Survival Trust at risk register. Our birds were hatched from eggs sourced from the Island of Trondra, in the Shetland Islands, where the birds were saved from extinction by Tommy and Mary Isbister. We have been surprised and delighted that the ducks lay almost year round – they must find our Devon weather a doddle in comparison to their Shetland origins. Although laying is prolific, the breeding season is still limited to spring and early summer.
Black Orpington large fowl chickens
We have kept various chickens (and guinea fowl) for many years but hadn’t had any clucking around for far too long. In 2010 we decided to remedy this and have developed a small flock of rare breed Black Orpington large fowl. They are the best tasting meat breed we’ve ever had and are on the Rare Breed Survival Trust at risk register.
Pilgrim geese are a light weight auto-sexing breed, their colour indicating their gender (the gander is white with some grey speckling, the females a light grey with some white). Pilgrims are on the Rare Breed Survival Trust at risk register.
BLACK ORPINGTON CHICKENS
Not only are our pigs captured in print, but both our Aylesbury and Black Indian Runner ducks have acquired a bit of fame of their own; they now feature in Jack Byard’s Know Your Ducks, published in Spring 2011.