Coggeshall Farm Museum Gets Some Temporary Turkey Tenants

By: Tim Studebaker

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BRISTOL, R.I. (WLNE) – Call it a match made in the East Bay:  A working farm growing too big for its land, and an historic farm with pasture to spare without any animals of their own while they do some construction.

Coggeshall Farm Museum Board President Steve Lake says, “The animals left the farm in December of 2018, and we will most definitely be reintroducing animals in 2020.”

As Coggeshall Farm Museum prepares to bring those animals back they’re hosting some temporary residents: turkeys and other animals being raised at Gnarly Vines Farm.

Gnarly Vines Farm Owner Ester Bishop says, “Our farm in Tiverton still needs a lot of work.  We don’t have a whole lot of pasture, established pasture, yet. We have a lot of woods.”

It’s a relationship that benefits everyone involved.  The owners of Gnarly Vines say it gives their animals some extra space to roam around, and the people at Coggeshall say it helps to rejuvenate their pastures.

Bishop says, “They will eat fresh grass, fresh bugs.  They will leave the manure behind, and their manure will fertilize the grass.”

The result is two fold: fresh food for the animals and greener grass in the fields.

Bishop says, “You’ll notice how much greener the grass is, how there’s more diversity of grasses and weeds already growing which is great for the soil and great for the animals.”

All of this means the land will be ready for Coggeshall to bring its own animals back to the farm next year.

Lake says, “To continue offering the really great, robust programming Coggeshall Farm has been known for, for much of its history.”

© WLNE-TV / ABC6 2019