Our vision is to consciously shift the land use ethics of disparity and disconnection to abundance and interconnection.
At Pajaro Pastures we seek to reconnect the distant paradigms of Ecology and Agriculture. By reintegrating soil, plants, and animals we work to better understand ecological workings of our whole farm/ecological system to provide you with the highest quality products and while protecting and enhancing the environment.
Our Ecological ranch is a diverse array of habitats. From sun-soaked meadows to shady creek beds, this landscape is alive.
The ranch is primarily mixed annual grass with native perennial grasses, herbs, and shrubs. A portion of the animalss’ grazing area is mixed oak woodland. In the underbrush, the chickens sift through the decaying leaf matter finding oak moth larvae. The chickens grazing also control the local tick populations which aids in preventing the spread of lyme disease. We continue to demonstrate that our rotational grazing strategies are improving the grassland not only in biological productivity but also promoting ecological diversity.
Unlike the average “free-range” or/and “cage free” chicken farm we move the birds’ grazing area every week. Our chickens primarily eat native vegetation and are also fed High Quality Certified NON GMO Chicken Feed, Certified Organic Vegetables, and Brewers Grain.
Approximate Diet breakdown:
25-35% Pasture (grass, forage, bugs, etc)
25-35% NON GMO layer feed ( Sunflower, wheat, and pea based)
25-35% Spent beer grain ( NON GMO malted Barley from a local brewery)
10-15% Organic Vegetables and Fruit from various local farms.
The ranch is primarily mixed annual grassland with mustard, chicory, and native perennial grasses. We have three heritage breeds of chickens, about 150 Rhode Island Reds/New Hampshire Reds, 150 Rhode Island Red/Rhode Island Whites, and 50 Black Sex-links.
The adventure began in 2007. I was a freshman at UCSC making my way through the academic world when I signed up for a gardening class in the Kresge Garden. At first the gardening course was just a way for me to get outside, use my body, and get muddy. After a couple of weeks of turning steaming hot compost piles, caring for the soil, carefully sowing seeds, irrigating, harvesting, and enjoying with the classroom community something clicked inside of me. Almost without realizing I was eating a salad we had just harvested complete with edible flowers, homemade dressing, munching away with my classmates, everything felt in its place. This was just the beginning; Throughout the following four years I had the opportunity to trial experimental gardening practices while engaging with the traditional techniques of sustainable agriculture. During my time at USCS I also Had to unique opportunity to intern on another local livestock farm, Fogline Farm. My first hands on experience with rotational grazing and animal husbandry happened at Fogline. I continued to volunteer there until I graduated in 2011 with a degree in Environmental Studies with an emphasis on Agroecology. The understanding of Agroecology and sustainability drive much of my management and design of my operation in years to come.
So I graduated and had a summer job at a grass fed cattle ranch in Pescadero, CA called Left Coast Grass Fed. We managed a herd of about 100 cows on about 2500 acres. In my free time I continued to volunteer with Fogline farm. Soon enough the job at the cattle ranch ended and I was unemployed. For months up to this point I had been toying with the idea of starting a goat meat business. After nights of creating spreadsheets the goat meat game seemed an uphill battle, especially till you have a large population of breeding females. My attention turned to eggs, seemingly the hottest commodity at the market. I never have seen anyone line up for lettuce. ( no offense to lettuce growers, yall do a wonderful job). People appeared to love eggs, I love eggs. At this point I had a general level of comfort with managing laying hens. I figured Id start my own egg operation. The first year was full of learning curves.. to be continued
To see some pictures check out our facebook @ www.facebook.com/pajaropastures
|PRODUCTS||Pasture Raised NON-GMO Eggs and Meat, Heirloom Vegetables, Heritage Fruit trees.|