Newborns highlight success of Rare Breeds in Chatsworth – Destination Chesterfield
By Josh Marais –
While visitors enjoyed the sights and sounds of its latest hatchlings this spring, Chatsworth Farmyard especially celebrated the latest additions to its breeding program for rare and sometimes critically endangered animals.
Two Albion calves, Bronte and Queenie, were born in the last ten days. Originally called the ‘Bakewell Blues’ because of their Derbyshire origins, Albions are listed by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST) as the rarest ‘priority’ breed.
Meanwhile Eugenie, Chatsworth’s Suffolk Punch mare is expecting another foal in the coming weeks, having successfully delivered visitor favorite ‘Huxley’ last year. The RBST considers the Suffolk Punch to be critically endangered with fewer than 500 purebred horses registered in the UK. Eugenie is one of 72 female Suffolk Punches, making them more endangered than the giant panda.
Bagot kids and Gloucester Old Spot piglets are arriving soon and are listed as ‘at risk’ breeds, while the barnyard is also hoping for rare breed chicks among its Derbyshire Redcap chickens.
The farm yard welcomed many newborns this spring, although not all of them were rare breeds. A donkey foal, lambs, kids and piglets are all expected in the coming weeks.
Chatsworth Farmyard is home to a number of the rarest breeds of cattle and equine in the country, including Suffolk Punch horses, Shire horses, Albion cattle, Bagot goats and Cream Legbar and Derbyshire Redcap chickens, as well as pigs British Landrace and Eriskay ponies.
“We are delighted to welcome our two beautiful Albion calves. They are incredibly rare and I have always wanted to have some of these wonderful cows here. Given their local heritage, this seems like the perfect fit for Chatsworth Farmyard,” said Farmyard Manager Melissa Underwood.
The Rare Breeds Survival Trust (RBST) awarded Chatsworth Farmyard RBST accreditation last year, recognizing its significant contribution to the conservation of some of the rarest breeds of cattle and horses native to the UK.
RBST is the national charity working to secure the future of rare breeds of native cattle and equine. Chatsworth Farmyard is now part of the network of 25 RBST-accredited farm parks that participate in crucial conservation programs, run special breeding groups and support education about rare breeds and their importance.
Chatsworth Farmyard and Adventure Playground is open to visitors daily (www.chatsworth.org).
Chatsworth supports the town’s marketing and economic growth through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organizations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.