Sunday, July 09, 2017

A visit to Ballacosnahan thanks to @MLProduce



I do hope that Jenny will forgive me as I've not said much about the visit we had to   Ballacosnahan to see the Manx Laoghtans and more importantly, as founder members of her fan club Big Mel and the very beautiful Little Nell.

These were just some of the beautiful Laoghtans that there are there. Having just had their hair cuts they looked very posh and varied in colour from chocolate brown, to a creamy coffee colour. The young lambs are a shade darker.

These poor souls were in what I called the hospital wing as each had a problem. Unlike many others might do, Jenny and her partner do not put down any of their sheep unless they have to do so. I was delighted that even one who had been attacked was here being given every chance of life.  The reality is that it is a farm, which has to make money and some (I think Jenny said rams) get sold for meat and some get sold on.
As you can see they're very beautiful to look at and I get the impression very intelligent. While they are domesticated, they retain a certain cautiousness of wild sheep, which is no bad thing. They are very independent minded and do well here as they've adapted to the Manx Weather. They are hill sheep and that is one thing you do notice about the farm it is very much a hill farm. We were invited to go up to the top, but to be honest we were too polite to take up the offer as Jenny and her partner were very busy getting the barn ready for hay to go into it and we didn't want to keep them any longer than we had to. If we get another visit then, yes we'd love to go up the top of it and take more photos.

Yes one of the highlights was seeing these two. Mel is a very loving mother and Nell is very beautiful. While it would have been nicer to get closer, I was pleased to see how Mel took Nell away from strangers and not even the temptation of food could stop her.

Ballacosnahan is very much an "organic" farm, as people have to say these days, I prefer to say proper farm where nature has a place to flourish and the farm land and stock get along. We saw many butterflies when visited. Even the chickens seem to know that they can wonder where they please as these ones did.
I couldn't help but feel that there was a lot of love going into what they were doing and the whole place echoed with that love. I also couldn't help but also feel that it was a struggle for them as love doesn't pay the bills and I know Jenny has to do extra things to help out when she has so much to do. That seems to be a reality facing all farmers these days and why so many people are leaving farming. From what we saw, it backed up what we felt we knew, that they really have to be at it every day of the year. I am tempted to make further points here, but this is not the place to do so and would taint the happy memory of the time we spent there.

So thank you dear Jenny our friend, it was like meeting an old friend and we hope to continue to be very old friends and yes we would like to come again perhaps at lambing next year - Aly has her wellies at the ready, but if not then, thanks for this opportunity. We send our love and never ending  best wishes to you both.

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