Four spot chasers back at the pond

Oooh it’s dragonfly time again… This four spot chaser must have emerged from the wildlife pond near Balebarn Eco Lodge overnight. It wasn’t until we looked closely at the image that we spotted the shed larval ‘skin’ just to the left of the dragonfly – almost peeping around the grass.

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Butterfly brings flutter of hope

On a day that’s full of ecological doom and gloom in the news, here’s a ray of sunshine. This is the first dingy skipper we’ve seen at Wheatland Farm. They are one of Europe’s fastest declining butterflies, so it’s great to see one here. Dingy Skippers like birdsfoot trefoil in mid-height grassland, and our management regime offers lots of that.

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Wheatland Farm 5km Running Route

People quite often ask us where they can go running from Wheatland Farm. Well, there’s round the fields on the mown paths of course. But if you want a 5km run along Devon lanes, this is it. We thought we’d put it up for #NaturallyHealthyMonth 2019.

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Bees that parasitise each other

We found this unusual bee, with it’s distinctive black and white markings, near Otter Cottage. It’s called a common mourning bee, though it’s not all that common. It is on the wing anytime between March and June.

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The Railway Inn at North Tawton

This is a genuine local Devon pub – the perfect antidote to manufactured shabby-chic. The scuffs and scratches on the bar stools at North Tawton’s Railway Inn are testament to their long use, and the worn menu covers tell you people have been choosing to eat here for years.

Try here for lunches Friday-Sunday, or an evening meal any night but Thursdays. The Railway Inn is about 10 miles from Wheatland Farm.

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Another bat survey gets underway

April is when the bats really start being seen around Wheatland Farm – and we’ve booked another bat survey as part of the Devon Greater Horseshoe Bat project.

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Sunshine and Butterflies

The blue skies have brought out more buttterflies around the eco lodges. Peacocks are already out of hibernation, we’ve seen a comma, and those heralds of Devon’s spring, the organge tip butterflies, are on the wing again.

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Cake to celebrate that the swallows are back

Fantastic! The swallows are back around Wheatland Farm’s Devon eco lodges, so it’s time for the annual celebration cake – baked when the first swallow of summer is seen actually at the farm.

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Baby bunnies

Easter has come early to Wheatland Farm. There are bunnies everywhere. One baby bunny spent a morning last week hanging around the farmhouse back door and ocassionally trying to jump through the glass. Today, we found a youngster in the turbine room – Wheatland Farm’s wet weather ‘garden/coffee room’. Here are a couple of clips. Spring has sprung!

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Fun 40 mile ride – your Wheatland Farm holiday challenge!

Now that we’re a bit fitter (but also feeling a bit older…) we thought we’d update our pages on cycling to Barnstaple along Devon’s Tarka Trail. It’s about a 40 mile round ride, and includes a train journey part of the way back to Wheatland Farm.

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More bumblebees enjoying spring sunshine

Already, a bumbling bumblebee is less of a rare first sign of spring and more something to expect around the lodges when the March weather gives us some sunshine. Today, two species were out and about, enjoying the pollen on the willow trees at Wheatland Farm.

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A Half Term Red Admiral Butterfly!

Another gorgeous sunny half term day has brought this red admiral butterfly out of hibernation. Sometimes we find these lovely butterflies tucked up in the woodshed, or under the eaves of the lodges. This one has found some early blossom to fuel up on. There’s not much around in February, but every little helps.

First bumble bees of 2019

It’s always a landmark when the first signs of spring come to Wheatland Farm. Today, two queen bumble bees, buff tailed bumble bees we think, were foraging on the snow drops behind the farm house. Lovely to see in the sunshine!

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A Luxurious Lunch at the Mason’s Arms

Fancy a fancy lunch? The Michellin Star rated Mason’s Arms, at Knowstone, is about 18 miles from Wheatland Farm. You’ll find a warm and unpretentious welcome and excellent food.

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A Snowy Dash Around Wheatland Farm

Lodge with hot tub - enjoy the hot tub even on a snowy morning!

A snow day – George took a mad dash around the lodges with his GoPro and shot this short video. There was enough snow for a couple of snow men too. Doesn’t look like it’s going to last though…

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Huge thanks for helping us raise money for the Devon Wildlife Trust

We’ve been totting up all those five pounds we give to the Devon Wildlife Trust for everyone who pays their Wheatland Farm holiday balance by BACS. And there’s a cheque in the post for £340.

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Crediton repair cafe in action again

Ian was at the Crediton Repair Cafe again this Saturday – fixing everything from radios (a treasured old style transistor radio, brought in all the way from Torquay!), a sewing machine peddle, a band saw, a nut chopper (pictured, with a happy owner), a telephoto lens. There were also clothes and curtains getting some attention, other electronics, such as a hand blender, and some tools like pruning saws etc.

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Conservation work starts again

The New Year starts as we mean to go on at Wheatland Farm! Getting out there and looking after the Devon countryside. Today’s job was clearing ‘brash’ from near Honeysuckle Lodge

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Our Devon Christmas

Season’s greetings to one and all – we hope you’re having a great break whether you’re staying at Wheatland Farm or anywhere else! We’ve already said goodby to one set of guests, and hello to the New Year visitors. Such a lovely time to get generations together from around the country for a family gathering. Of course, a winter walk or two, and even a trip to the beach (To admire the pebbles? Not to swim, surely…) is essential, and what Wheatland Farm Christmas would be complete without a moment of contemplation at ‘the big tree‘ at Eggesford.

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Crediton Repair Cafe

[Ian] It was the Crediton Repair Cafe today. So I spent the morning helping fix things – something I’m very familar with, from keeping the lodges and the cottage  in good  order at Wheatland FarmContinue reading “Crediton Repair Cafe”