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Global Field Day: Ravenstonedale, Cumbria, UK
June 24, 2017 @ 10:00 am - 2:00 pm UTC+1￡30
How to Harness Biology to Improve Land, Health and Profitability
Frank Hunter is a traditional farmer with a modern-day twist. He wants the best possible outcome financially, whilst raising rare native breeds that easily convert grass into meat. He uses no fertilisers, other than minerals put back into the soil by the livestock themselves through dung and urine.
How does he do it? By promoting biodiversity on his farm, he gains productivity and stability of plant and animal populations, which means fewer inputs are required.
His Shetland cattle, sheep and dairy goats graze wild flowers and herbs on his Coronation Meadows, which were specially chosen to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth. In the summer the sheep are put back to the common fell land to give the meadows a rest. Piper Hole Farm is also a supplier of meadow seeds.
The Coronation Meadow itself is 25 acres, and the entire farm is 70 acres of meadowland, with some SSSI, and some county wildlife sites.
Frank is keen to host farmers, especially small holders in the area, and those interested in conserving meadowland.