Saturday, June 12, 2010

SVF Open House 2010

Yes, it's that time of year again when the SVF Foundation opens the farm to the public. I did a three-part comprehensive series on it last year (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3), so this year all I'm posting are the new critters.

Like last year, the yard fowl were being kept in their pens instead of let out to run loose as they were in previous years; apparently there's a pair of Red-tailed Hawks nesting nearby, and they don't want to lose any of their rare breeds to hawk lunchtime. So please excuse the interference of the wire fencing in these pictures. Anyhow... They have a whole new breed of chickens in this year - Polish Turbans, in Buff (cock and hen in the top picture), Golden ( a hen in the middle picture), and White-crested Black (cock and hen along wih the Golden hen in the bottom picture). Like the Appenzeller Hobenfitzer from Switzerland, they have the fancy hairdo, as you can see. The male White-crested Black looks like something from a Mardi Gras parade!

In the cattle lines, they've added two Randall Linebacks. This is a very rare breed of cattle, only 150 left. Mostly the breed has been absorbed into the Holstein breed, but the Randall family in Vermont kept one of the few herds of purebred Linebacks. When the family died off and the Vermont properties were sold off, some of the cattle were saved by heritage breed conservation groups to help preserve genetic diversity in cattle lines.

A new goat breed this year is the Arapawa from New Zealand (Kia ora to all my Kiwi buddies!). This is a feral breed which is only occasionally tamed. I got two shots of this fella, the second one a nice, closer look to get a portrait.

Okay, I know I showed you this last year, but I love this house. It's the old slaughterhouse and smokehouse (the little round part rear left) that's been renovated and converted into a residence. I just love this house - the shingled, rolled-eaves roof imitating a thatched roof, the stonework and small-paned windows, all combine to give the English country cottage look. It could almost be an above-ground Hobbit hole! And I'll leave you with this as the parting picture. Enjoy!

© 2010 by A. Roy Hilbinger


  1. yes Roy,that house doess have an English feel to it.& the critter in the top photo looks like the England Goalkeeper!

  2. Exotic fowl really look exotic! The cow & goat are interesting too--the cow looks much less "bred" than Holsteins.