The farm comprises approximately 750 acres of heather moorland and 250 acres of rough grazing and improved grassland. There is also a little over 100 acres of mixed woodland. The main farm steading sits at 1200 ft above sea level and the hills rise to a peak of 2440 ft at the summit of Mount Blair.
The Highland Cattle Fold on Borland farm was started in 1996 and shortly afterwards the foundation stock of the current Hebridean flock arrived.The Highalnd Cattle fold is founded on old blood lines of all recognised colours. The emphasis is on blood lines from the Western Isles of Scotland including Mull and Uist. Folds featuring in our pedigrees include; Achnacloich, Ardbhan, Balinoe, Glenogle, Cladich, Ormsary, Torloisk and Woodneuk.
After having seen Belted Galloway cattle on a farm visit in 2005, it was decided to start a small fold of pedigree Belted Galloway cattle.
Borland Farm also subscribes to Scottish Food Quality Certification (SFQC) standards and has attained for many years now, full membership to the their Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) farm assured scheme.
As all our animals are native breeds, they are well suited to being reared outdoors all year round without prophylactic chemicals or intensive practices, in a gentle and extensive manner. Their unselective grazing and foraging habits are acknowledged by conservation authorities to enhance the flora on hill ground and therefore improve the habitat for wildlife. Our animals have been raised in a traditional manner and will have had a guaranteed quality of life. They are allowed to develop and grow at a rate dictated by nature and the environment..
We produce our own haylage for winter feeding. An addition to the farm stock in 1998 which fits in well, is Hebridean sheep which assist in control of obnoxious weeds such as ragwort and their close cropping of grass assists seeding with clover for natural nitrogen generation. They are the one breed of sheep that can improve heather growth on moorland. We have a great interest in improving the habitat of our moorland areas which until 1996 were heavily grazed with black-faced sheep. These have been replaced by the highland cattle and the changes in the heather biomass has been monitored under a joint project between The Game Conservancy Trust and the World Pheasant Association. Already major improvements in heather regeneration have been recorded as well as improvements in red grouse numbers and other moorland birds.
Articles under the title of ‘The Learning Curve‘ record the problems of setting up a Highland cattle fold and make a useful introduction for newcomers. Borland Farm has specialised in studying the benefits of Highland cattle and Hebridean sheep for conservation grazing with research help on the farm carried out by The Game Conservancy Trust.
Borland farm has a unique relationship with Highland Drovers of Perth, a small company that offers a high quality butchering and packaging service, and using Highland Drovers we are able to offer bespoke boxes of Highland Beef and Hebridean lamb delivered to your door. Please visit www.highlanddrovers.co.uk or call 01738 561523 to obtain more information.