HOME TO ROOST

FOR MOUNT ROLAND EGG FARM­ERS AN­GELA AND PHILLIP GLOVER, THEIR MUCH-LOVED CHICK­ENS ARE PART OF THE FAM­ILY.

Country Style - - MOUNT ROLAND TASMANIA OUR LIFE IN THE COUNTRY - WORDS VIR­GINIA IMHOFF PHO­TOG­RA­PHY MARK ROPER

WHEN­EVER AN­GELA AND Phillip Glover drive the ute out into their lush green pas­tures be­neath Mount Roland in north­ern Tas­ma­nia, they’re mobbed by hun­dreds of ex­cited chick­ens. The birds hop up onto the tray and dart around the truck amid a deaf­en­ing ca­coph­ony of chicken chat­ter. It seems like a happy, heart-warm­ing show of af­fec­tion — or per­haps it’s just cu­rios­ity that brings them run­ning when they see the cou­ple. But if it re­ally is some form of chicken love, then the feel­ing is re­cip­ro­cal. The Glovers are mad about their chick­ens. “We love get­ting out among them,” says Phillip. “We love to sit and watch them,” An­gela adds. And with more than 3000 chick­ens free rang­ing on their 40 hectares, young chick­ens com­ing on, plus Phillip’s col­lec­tion of her­itage breeds, they have plenty to watch. The lay­ers are a com­mer­cial Hy-line Brown breed pro­duc­ing 1400 dozen eggs a week, which they sell at Launce­s­ton’s Har­vest Mar­ket as well as whole­sal­ing to lo­cal busi­nesses un­der the la­bel Mount Roland Free Range Eggs. Twelve mo­bile homes from where the chick­ens come and go are moved to a fresh lo­ca­tion ev­ery four weeks. If lo­ca­tion is ev­ery­thing, then liv­ing in the dress cir­cle of the dra­matic Mount Roland is like mil­lion­aire’s row for chick­ens. Both An­gela and Phillip grew up in the area, and bought their cur­rent prop­erty in 1998. They have tried their hand at dif­fer­ent en­ter­prises while rais­ing their now 24-year-old son, Brady, and daugh­ter, Lau­ren, 23. Phillip has two older chil­dren, Ha­ley, 30, and Jar­rod, 29, who grew up in Dubbo. Phillip, 52, started out as a shearer. An­gela, 45, was a restau­rant su­per­vi­sor for TT Lines in Devon­port. They’ve farmed dairy cat­tle, sheep, rare breed pigs, ran a store and worked in the se­cu­rity busi­ness to­gether, to boot. “A lot of the time we were do­ing three jobs, shear­ing, milk­ing cows and do­ing se­cu­rity, as we were struggling with a young fam­ily,” says Phillip. “Se­cu­rity is a big in­dus­try and we did all the cour­ses. I’ve done The Footy Show, bands and other things. Ange caught a bank rob­ber once!” Mean­while, Phillip had been rais­ing chick­ens since he was a boy. “I used to show them. I started with Rhode Is­land Reds, Light Sus­sex, Aus­tralorps and Blue An­dalu­sian.” In re­cent years he has also been rais­ing pul­lets for the layer mar­ket. For the Glovers, start­ing Mount Roland Free Range Eggs in 2012 was just a nat­u­ral pro­gres­sion. “We needed to make a go of this place and thought ‘Why not eggs?’” says An­gela. Mount Roland Free Range Eggs, tele­phone 0499 981 807. >

Chick­ens en­joy free rang­ing on the lush green pas­tures of Mount Roland. FAC­ING PAGE Freshly col­lected eggs ready for the mar­kets.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.