Thistle Hill Farm – Blog

…doing what comes naturally

Category: Traditional Devon

All Brit…and American too….

….we’ve finally reached the “end game”….producing pure English Devon genetics here in the States.  TDA Cutcombe was conceived and calved here at Thistle Hill eight months ago from an English embryo dam born here and a sire (Ashott Barton Millennium Falcon) whose semen had been shipped here. Cutcombe is the name of one of our partners’ farms […]

Meanwhile, back at the ranch….

….life ain’t so bad either. A group of our senior cows on a lazy Spring afternoon.  These are all being exposed to our “Jackpot“.  He comes down to us from Rotokawa 688 and 243.  A British bull, Highwayman, is doing the honors with the other half of our American herd. The English-imports also were bred […]

The waiting game….

….begins again!  And this time with added suspense!  Embryologist Dr. Jim Evans implants English embryos into our cows….always a bit nerve-wracking but particularly since these little ones were tied up in England for almost three years because of a mystery virus that hit a number of herds and sheep flocks. Looking on are Jane Narrimore […]


….just before 2015 joined us, we got the welcome, long-delayed news that all our English embryos, tied up for almost two years, had finally arrived in the United States. So we can now hope that some “Little Norahs” will soon be capering around the pastures.  That’s “Big Norah” on the right and her breeder, Ivan Rowe […]

A battery of bulls….

….actually, our bull inventory is pretty low right now.  Our two-year olds are all sold and the group of yearlings is sandwiched between Traditional Devon™ Wellington on the left and Thistle Hill Jackpot on the right. To the left of Jackpot is a particularly exciting young English bull—TDA Highwayman—and next to him is another excellent prospect, […]

Recent arrivals…

….at Thistle Hill. In the background, an English Traditional Devon™ heifer just brought up from the recip farm in Georgia.  She’s a Cashtiller/Jaunty 8-month old beauty.  In the foreground, a ™bull calf born here a few weeks ago to TDA 4.  And the sire was Ashott-Barton Falcon. Here’s where it gets complicated, so pay attention:  […]

Special delivery….

….our  Traditional Devon™ bull “Churchill” has been transferred from Thistle Hill in Virginia to our partners, Bill and Nancy Walker’s farm, in Anderson, South Carolina.  Churchill’s first calves are on the ground here….and the Walkers will be trying him out during the next breeding season. From South Carolina, we dipped down into Georgia and picked up some […]

So far, so good…..

….our Traditional Devon America™ bull, Churchill, has a second calf to his credit.  She’s a day-old in this picture, the daughter of a Senepol/Devon cross heifer. The birth was easy (easy for me to say)….we saw the heifer go into labor…drove back across the street to get a tag…and the calf was actually already on […]

Made in the USA….

….Traditional Devon America™ reached another milestone with the birth of this little bull calf.  TDA is a partnership of three American breeders focused on importing traditional English Red Devon genetics to the United States. The dam of this calf….one of the first English embryos conceived at a clinic in Oxford and the daughter of two […]

What we did on our summer vacation….

….visited Devon farms, of course.  And there’s none prettier than John and Patsy Forelle’s “Folly Farm” near Pine Planes, New York.  You may remember it as the scene of the glamorous closing banquet of the then-new North American Devon Association.         John and I served on the NADA board for several years […]