The Outdoor Classroom
School Activity Worksheet
Animal Waste on Mellow farm comes from, Cows, Pigs, Sheep, Ducks, Geese and chickens. There is also vegetable waste and waste from grass cuttings.
What could the farmer use this waste for and how?
It could be added to the grass in the meadows to add more nutrients to the soil to make the Grass grows more for the animals to eat.
To make fuel in the form of bio- gas.
The amount of fertilizer added to fields must be added mainly in winter time to protect water resources. The farm fields have a river running through most of its meadows.
Too much nitrogen run off from fertilizer could pollute the river.
The Pigs at Mellow farm are lucky that they have plenty of space to live outside and run about together. They have shelter under trees and muddy hollows to roll in. The piglets can play together and be with their mums for longer.
What do you think they eat?
Pigs are fed lots of fresh apples from the local orchard, and plenty of vegetables from the farmer’s large garden. In the winter to supplement the diet they will have dried pellets with a carefully balanced formula to keep them healthy at each stage of growth and clean water to drink all the time.
Cows need protein in their diet, and fibre. Mellow farm once had over 100 dairy cows; they needed to eat much more food to produce milk. The cows on Mellow farm are a different breed now and fed to produce high quality meat. They have plenty of grass to eat in the meadows and fields and relax together under the trees.
What do you think the cows eat?
Grass is grown on farm to feed the cows in summer. In winter cows eat silage made from the extra grass on Mellow farm. Some is made into small bales of hay that the farmer stores in the large barn to keep it dry. The silage is extra food made for the cows to eat, this is like fermented grass as it is wrapped up when it is still green and moist into large black bags and put out in the field ready to feed to the cattle in the cold winter months.
How does the farmer keep the animals in the fields and meadows?
What is the best way for him to do this and what problems can you see?
Fencing? – expensive, need replacing and maintaining
Hedges? - great to wildlife, need to be maintained
There are no crops apart from vegetables for the family and pigs to eat grown on the farm as well as the grass for animals to eat. This means that there is no need for too many chemicals on Mellow farm. On Arable farms Pesticides are made in factories and transported to the farm and used to kill pests on crops.
But there is a lot of groups camping on the farm all summer, can you think of any way that the farm could possibly damage the environment?
- Camper’s rubbish -The farm recycles all its waste items from campers and the small caravan site.
- Cars and pollution – large mobile homes are not encouraged on to the farm and families are encouraged to come in 1 vehicle.
What could affect the Carbon foot print travelling to the farm?
- Students and visitors are encouraged to use coaches and minibuses
Not all of the land is for animal production.
What else is important on the farm land?
- Wildlife habitats
- A healthy beautiful place to live & visit
Thank you for coming to visit Mellow farm, we hope that you have enjoyed your time here and we hope to see you again!