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28th September 2010

Well the sun shone and made our first Apple Weekend one to remember. Apples were pressed, bobbed, thrown and hunted, and everyone agreed that the freshly pressed juice, made from a combination of all our apples, was delicious. Such a happy, friendly, family atmosphere is right up the Rare Breeds street, and was perfectly rounded off by the traditional homemade toffee apples, and apple pie and cream in the cafe.


14th September 2010

Trying to think of a weekend family activity? Join us on the 25th and 26th of September as we press all the apples from our trees. You can even bring a container (reasonably sized, please!) to take home a free sample. In the farm there will be lots of extra activities going on: try your hand at apple throwing, without your hands at apple bobbing, and join in the apple hunt. Prizes will be awarded and much fun had by all. Round everything off with apple pie and cream in the cafe.

Not an apple fan? Don't worry, all our animals will be there as usual to give you a great day out, with delicious meals and treats in the Garden Cafe.

Normal farm entry prices will apply: Adults £4.75, Children £3.50, Senior Citizens £4.25, Families £15.


24th August 2010

Here’s a refreshing Sunday activity: relaxing in beautiful surroundings and brushing up your photographic skills with a real expert. On 5th September renowned wildlife photographer Richard Austin will be leading the Photography Day at Totnes Rare Breeds Farm. Between 12pm and 5pm he will be offering tips and advice on how to capture that special image.


Richard Austin is wildlife photographer for the Western Morning News, and author of two best-selling books, Animal Magic and More Animal Magic. He has acted as official photographer for numerous premier league football clubs, and has snapped portraits of Princess Diana.

But on the 5th he will definitely have his wildlife cap on, and will award a £50 first prize to whoever takes the best photo of the day. At no extra charge for entry, it’s well worth a go.

The day is aimed at photographers of all abilities and ages. All the animals are guaranteed to be looking extra-photogenic.

Usual farm entrance charges will apply (£4.75 adults, £3.50 children, £4.25 senior citizens, £15 family).


10th August 2010

What better way to spend time off than to watch hundreds of others working? After several months of faffing, our Glass Bee Hive is officially up and running, and stuffed with busy honey bees.

The colony wasn't happy with our first attempt, which was in the shape of a conventional hive, and never settled. Undeterred, Barrie (joint owner of Rare Breeds and head hive architect) redesigned the whole thing. It is now shaped to imitate a natural bees' nest in a hollow tree, or wall cavity. The workers are gradually figuring it out, and are starting to bring pollen back.

The big question at the moment is whether we have a queen. The colony arrived with several unhatched queen cells, but all that has been seen of an actual queen was a dead one, being carried by workers a few days ago. This (hopefully) means we have a live queen somewhere that killed her rival. If that is the case, she should soon leave the hive to mate, and will then begin to reproduce. The colony will then be established.

They really are a fascinating lot, and are on full display to anyone who wants to come and see them hard at work.

DSCF3287_resizedAll the animals are practising their best poses in preparation for the Totnes Rare Breeds Art Day later this month. Local illustrator Paula Cloonan will guide visitors through a day of looking, learning and creating.

- Join the farm trail and fill your sketch book with all the picturesque animals.

- Receive a free art bag, with basic art materials including your very own sketch book.

- Become a member of the Totnes Rare Breeds Art Club.

Normal farm entrance prices apply, +£2.50 each for each person joining in the Art Day.

To book, ring 07989 169181, and get creative on the 25th.