By Amelia Tarallo
Hometown Weekly Staff
After months of careful pandemic-related planning and readjustment, Unity Farm Sanctuary in Sherborn has resumed tours to educate visitors about the work it does.
Naturally, Hometown Weekly couldn't resist a visit of its own.
Unity Farm Humane Education Director Marla Andrews led the tour and began with a quick introduction to the “welcome committee,” consisting of the sanctuary’s goats, sheep, and Maxine, the guard llama. Winston Lambert III, one of the resident sheep, is a new addition to the farm. He’s easy to pick out among the herd, with a brown and white spotted coat and horns. With his horns, he has become great friends with the goats.
Next, Andrews introduced the tour groups to Star and Adele, the donkeys. Star is a longtime resident of Unity Farm who recently lost her paddock mate. Adele, a standard donkey, was perfect for that role. “We wanted her specifically for Star because we wanted Star to live with another donkey in her lifetime,” explained Andrews. Now, Star and Adele enjoy the show-tunes Andrews sings to them each day.
Just a paddock away reside the newest residents on the farm. “I need you to peek inside here to see something a little bit unusual, and I mean a little,” said Andrews before going into the paddock. The tour group was definitely not prepared to see what could possibly be the tiniest horse trot out with Andrews. She introduced her visitors to Boomer and his best friend, Lollipop, two miniature horses. “[Boomer] is the miniest of mini horses I’ve ever seen in my life. This is full size,” said Andrews. Boomer, full-grown, is only 27 inches high. Because of their size, both he and Lollipop suffer from some difficult health problems - but they have found a permanent home at Unity Farm.
The tour continued and eventually made its way to the cows. Unity Farm houses six cows in total, split between three different pens. While they are separated, the cows enjoy each other’s company. In the first pen reside Elliot, Pal McTrouble, and Audrey Heifer. Pal McTrouble arrived after escaping from a slaughterhouse and surviving after being on the run for three days. He was eventually caught by a staff member at Unity Farm, who delivered him to his new home, where he will reside for years to come. He lived with the alpacas for some time, but once he was finally comfortable, Pal moved in with his fellow bovines. Next door is Dudley, a Scottish Highland bull with a cult-like following. Like every cow on the farm, Dudley is ultra-friendly, but has long horns that keep him from living with any non-horned cattle. Andrews passed out some hay to participants who wanted to try feeding the cows.
The youngest of the cows are Wallace and Bob, who were eagerly waiting for treats in front of their gate. Wallace is a red Scottish Highland bull cross, while Bob is a Holstein steer. Both young bulls arrived at the farm around the same time as tiny babies and have grown into nice, mooing teenagers. Of course, the two are as thick as thieves. “Are they best friends?” asked one visitor. The answer: of course they are.
Along the way, the tour group met more members of Unity Farm's family, consisting of horses, alpacas, guard dogs, llamas, pigs, and a large flock of fowl, learning about them all as they went along. Andrews ended the visit by providing the group with stickers portraying some of the most iconic residents of the farm.
Visitors were not only able to see and feed some of the adorable animals, but also to develop a better understanding about the important work Unity Farm Sanctuary does every day in saving and caring for them. To learn more, visit www.unityfarmsanctuary.org.