FARMYARD AWARD

The Sligo Champion - - FRONT PAGE -

A West Sligo fam­ily has scooped a ma­jor award for keep­ing a tidy, well-main­tained and safe farmyard.

The Feeney Fam­ily from En­nis­crone, won first place in Con­nacht for their farmyard in the 2017 FBD Na­tional Farmyard Awards run in con­junc­tion with the Ir­ish Farm­ers Jour­nal.

The Feeney hold­ing was de­scribed as a cat­tle farmer’s dream yard.

The first par­cel of land was bought by Mary and the late Joe Feeney over 60 years ago.

Their sons Bren­dan and Greg have added to this and the farm now ex­ceeds 200 acres.

The Feeney broth­ers have de­vel­oped the farm run­ning a pedi­gree Charo­lais herd and a com­mer­cial cat­tle herd. They also fat­ten store lambs.

The Farm Man­ager, Dar­ragh McManus moved to the farm in 2016 with his wife Ciara and two young boys, Shea(9) and Fionn(2).

Dar­ragh man­ages the farm with some ca­sual labour. The farmyard is of an ex­cep­tion­ally high stan­dard. It is si­t­u­ated in the mid­dle of the farm and com­mands views of the river Moy and the At­lantic Ocean.

It is the fo­cal point of the farm and is de­signed with safety, func­tion­al­ity and prac­ti­cal­ity in mind.

This farmyard is well off the road and ser­viced by a long drive­way that has been planted with hedg­ing on both sides.

The Bos­to­nia herd of pedi­gree Charo­lais an­i­mals wel­comes vis­i­tors on a reg­u­lar ba­sis for sales.

Sig­nage is clear around the farm to guide and alert vis­i­tors. Cows are housed in in­di­vid­ual pens and each can be head locked for ease of man­age­ment.

All sheds have head­locks. Bull hous­ing is sturdy and young bulls are housed in pairs to keep them con­tent. Man es­cape routes are well planned.

Mobile gates on wheels with steer­ing al­low cat­tle to be moved safely and eas­ily. A new ma­chin­ery shed has been added this year.

The whole farm is piped for the power washer from a cen­tral tank.

All rub­bish is baled cen­trally for ease of dis­posal. This farmyard is any cat­tle farm­ers dream yard, said the judges.

The run­ner up in Con­nacht was the 100 acre dairy farm run by Billy and Deirdre Con­nor in a pic­turesque area of Co Mayo near Mount Nephin in Cross­molina.

The over­all win­ner was the -Hill­crest Farm in County Down which is a large fam­ily run dairy busi­ness. Beat­tie and Mar­garet Lil­burn along with their sons David and Reg­gie farm 500 acres. The Lil­burns own 350 acres.

The Feeney Fam­ily, Greg Feeney, Dar­ragh McManus from Scur­more, En­nis­crone re­ceiv­ing their Farmyard Award.

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