Orkney Buffalo

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Welcome to our family farm in Orkney

taste of orkney

Orkney Buffalo Blog

Welcome to my blog


A blog about all the goings on on our family farm in Orkney.  Living the dream with our buffalo and Jacobs sheep and chickens and cats and dogs....what next?

By Naomi Bremner, Mar 21 2016 10:39PM

Yesterday was the first day of Spring...as it happened on the back of a lovely run of dry weather; our fields are now drier than they were at any point during 2015s dreadful summer. Lets just hope it holds for a few more days, and maybe weeks! Best of all, all my washing has that line-dried, spring-like perfume that has saturated the fibres so you keep getting an awakening whiff when you make the bed in the morning.

While the days have been dry there is still a fair nip in the air, and especially as darkness falls; and until things dry up completely there are still long days spent in the byers with the wheelbarrow and shovel dyting out the dung!

Time then to try out some recipes that can quickly be thrown together at lunch time and then are ready to serve up when the byers are done at tea time. A melt-in-the-mouth shin of buffalo stew is just the business! When a shin of buffalo is slow cooked, magic happens – this is easy, humble, warming and thoroughly delicious. Here's the recipe...

By Naomi Bremner, Mar 23 2015 11:34AM

The first #Orkneyhour of 2015, and a celebration of Community in Orkney!

...It is the way Scotland looks to the South,

the way we enter friends' houses

to leave what we came with, or flick

the kettle's switch and wait.

This is where I want to live,

close to where the heart gives out,

ruined, perfected, an empty arch against the sky

where birds fly through instead of prayers

while in Hoy Sound the ferry's engines thrum

this life this life this life.

Andrew Greig

The community is strong in Orkney, it's one of those things that makes Orkney special. From Community Associations, Sports Clubs, Playgroups and Playparks, SWRI, to all the festivals and volunteering that makes things happen. Join us in celebrating all this community good, and find out about what is happening in Orkney in 2015.

Q1 9pm Introduce yourself? Where are you joining in from? #Orkneyhour

Q2 9:05pm What does Community mean to you in Orkney? What works well and why? #Orkneyhour

Q3 9:15pm Which events or activities mustn't be missed in 2015? #Orkneyhour

Q4 9:25pm How can people get involved in their community across Orkney? In different areas or with different groups. #Orkneyhour

Q5 9:35pm Share what you / your organisation gets out of taking part in community activities or community learning in Orkney #Orkneyhour

Q6 9:45pm What could be done more or different to support community development? #Orkneyhour

Q7 9:55pm Spring is springing :) What signals spring for you in Orkney? #Orkneyhour

Include photos during the hour that celebrate all things #Orkney #Orkneyhour

By Naomi Bremner, May 23 2014 08:34PM

Sunday 8th June 2014 is Open Farm Sunday and Schoolhouse Farm in Deerness is opening their gates to visitors, for what promises to be both a fascinating and enjoyable day out for the whole family. Schoolhouse Farm is delighted to be joining hundreds of other farms across the country in hosting events to celebrate British farming and food. Open Farm Sunday is an annual nationwide event, organised by LEAF, it’s a great chance to find out firsthand how our food is grown and produced sustainably and talk to the farmers responsible.

When: Sunday 8th June

Where: Schoolhouse Farm, Deerness, KW17 2QH

Opening time: From 11 – Until 5pm

Admission cost: Free

Further information: http://on.fb.me/1oMAcmb

A chance to meet and find out about our water buffalo herd and Jacob flock, including this years' lambs. We are also hosting a 'peedie producers' market with arts, crafts and food produced from in and around Deerness. There will also be displays of vintage tractors and farm implements and of crafts, such as spinning.

By Naomi Bremner, May 4 2014 08:43AM

#OrkneyHour is a monthly chat on Twitter. Covering subjects like ‘where to stay’, ‘where to eat’, ‘what to do in Orkney’ etc. It’s a chance for Orcadians and travelers to chat and plan a visit to/around Orkney and to make new friends. Search #OrkneyHour to see previous tweets. #OrkneyHour takes place on the second Tuesday of the month, 9pm – 10pm GMT on Twitter. Tag your tweets with the hashtag #Orkneyhour.

Orkney’s calendar is packed full of festivals to suit everyone as well as the major international festivals for which the county is famed. Find out more at: http://www.orkney.com/culture

Here are the questions for #Orkneyhour on Tuesday 13th May:

9pm It would be good if you could introduce yourself (e.g. name/org, what you do, area, remember to add '#OrkneyHour') or just let us know you're there!

9:05pm Q1 New to Tweeting from / about / around Orkney? Top tips on Tweeting from the stalwarts? #Orkneyhour

9:10pm Q2 Tough question…which is your Orkney festival / event of choice and why? #Orkneyhour

9:25pm Q3 Best ideas and ways to promote your festival? #Orkneyhour

9:40pm Q4 Food for thought! – Having a well-earned rest from all the festivalling…where in Orkney can you eat with a great view – and what's on the menu? #Orkneyhour

9:50pm Q5 Mustn’t miss events or performances in the 2014 Orkney festival programme? #Orkneyhour

9.00 - 10.00 Share lots of pictures on all the above! (Remember the #OrkneyHour)

By Naomi Bremner, Apr 11 2014 04:28PM

I left off last time with the first buffalo arriving on East Mainland Show day. Next came our first calf, early in the morning of the 13th August. In the days running up to that we were frequently called and emailed with requests as to whether the first calf had made an appearance, both from the press and also friends and family. More anticipation for a buffalo calf than any of three children when they had been imminent.

As it turned out, in their fervour to chronicle the first calf, the national papers miss-reported that Dorothy – then aged 4 – had been up in the field in the night and had spotted it! She does deserve some credit however, as she had woken Dad to get tucked back into bed (as 4-year-olds do!), and this prodded Russell to go out and check the heifer he suspected was near calving. And there it was, the first buffalo born on Orkney soil, which was later named Boris.

Shortly afterwards our second calf, this time Bertha, was born. The new calves were joined a couple of weeks later by a score of one to two-year-olds from Wales (The farmer who bred them, who had always wanted to see Orkney, even hitched a ride up on the cattle wagon with them).

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