The Farm & Our Rare Breeds

Vintage tractor at Gam Farm Rare Breeds
Gam Farm sits at the edge of Grassington in the Yorkshire Dales national park. It is home to many varieties of rare breeds and an extensive collection of vintage agricultural machinery and farming implements.
The Rare Breed Survival Trust (RBST) maintains a watch list of breeds in danger of extinction and we have selected some of the rarest of those; Boreray sheep, Bagot goats, Northern Dairy Shorthorn cattle to join our breeding programme, not only to increase numbers but also to ensure genetic diversity.

Demonstrating their worth in 21st  century farming is the surest way of aiding their survival. These animals make Gam Farm distinct and different and enable us to produce some fabulous wools and yarns, available to purchase on this site.

Bagot Goats, Gam Farm
Bagot Goats, Gam Farm
The Rare Breed Survival Trust (RBST) maintains a watch list of breeds in danger of extinction and we have selected some of the rarest of those; Boreray sheep, Bagot goats, Northern Dairy Shorthorn cattle to join our breeding programme, not only to increase numbers but also to ensure genetic diversity.

Demonstrating their worth in 21st  century farming is the surest way of aiding their survival. These animals make Gam Farm distinct and different and enable us to produce some fabulous wools and yarns, available to purchase on this site.

Hebridean Sheep at Gam Farm Rare Breeds
Although not open to the general public, we host workshops, demonstrations and open days for the Dales Support Group of the RBST.  We are constantly looking for new members and you would be most welcome. Gam Farm also has stock to sell.

Gam Farm Rare Breeds

View and read more about our rare breed animals below
About our Sheep

Whitefaced Woodland

Originating from the Pennines it is one of the largest hill sheep and is our main breed.  We can have up to 200 “Woodies” at any one time. They have the finest fleece of any of the hill sheep.

Wensleydale

Another local breed. This sheep is recognisable by the distinctive blue colouring of its head and ears. It is a Longwool  breed and the wool, resembling fine mohair, is the finest lustre wool in the world.

Shetland

This is a small sheep which can be found in a great variety of colours from white through to black. They don’t necessarily give birth to lambs the same colour as themselves, which makes lambing time quite exciting.

Boreray

From the island of St Kilda this small cream coloured nimble breed is in the endangered category of the RBST watchlist. Our 10 Boreray ewes and a ram are constantly inventing new and ingenious ways to escape.

Hebridean

The black sheep of our farm. They can have two or four horns. Most of ours have four and the four horned rams look very striking.

About our Goats

Bagot Goat

A small goat with large curved horns and long hair.  The black and white colouring makes them very recognisable.  They are most useful for grazing scrubland and clearing thistles.  Our billy called Seth is a real character.

Old English Goat

This small cobby goat is very hardy and unlike other goat breeds doesn’t mind the rain due to its thick outer coat and cashmere undercoat.   A wide variety of colours and markings make this a very attractive addition to the farm.

About our Northern Dairy Shorthorn Cattle

 

The Northern Dairy Shorthorn

The Northern Dairy Shorthorn evolved as a hardy dual purpose breed in the Dales, Durham and Westmoreland. In 1944 there were as many as 10,000 females and 750 bulls recorded.

They produced quality milk and beef and the milk was used for the manufacture of Cotherstone cheese.

With the modernisation of farming and the import of foreign breeds the numbers of NDS began to fall until in the 1960’s they reached a rock bottom low of 35 females.

Fortunately, in recent years, a handful of breeders have maintained the Northern Dairy Shorthorn as a distinct breed, and today approximately 150 females are recorded in the register.

The Gam Farm herd numbers just 35 at the moment, but we hope to gradually increase this using a carefully planned breeding programme. The herd exhibits the full range of Shorthorn colours from red through all the various shades of roan to white, but the roan ones are our preferred colour.

Gam Farm has several families of NDS –  Lass, Queenie, Duchess and Jill.  We are on our 3rd generation families now and our bull, Cannsmill Sunrise (Sunny to his friends), is out running with the girls now and hopefully providing us with our 4th generation.

2017 is going to be a very exciting year when we start to manufacture our very own Northern Dairy Shorthorn cheese.

 

Gam Farm supports the

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Questions about Gam Farm? Get in touch today!
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