Harry and Peregrine Kavros moved to Hillsborough, North Carolina, from Manhattan in 2015. They expected to do some gardening, and packed their car with a shovel, hoe, hedge shears, and a few other implements that Harry’s father had used since the 1950s. They soon discovered that seven pastures and a dozen acres of woods would require more serious horsepower to maintain.
It took about a year to clear underbrush, collect fallen branches, chain saw unwanted trees, and bush hog pastures. Meanwhile these city dwellers researched how to make the land productive. Harry planted thyme, buckwheat, and crimson clover to support the pollinators. He designed stone terraces for Peregrine to harvest lavender and sage for a local natural beauty care company. Early into their new avocation, one pasture hosted a million and a half bees. At the other end of the property, a horse roams another pasture. In between, Harry and Peregrine thought they could get some use out of an old barn. They refitted one stall to create a roost for chickens and guinea fowl.
The barn is home to several varieties of chickens, which are both visually stunning and hardy layers. Their eggs are brown, green, and blue, and can tolerate weather extremes. Today Ameraucanas, Whiting True Blues and Greens, Black Copper Marans, Cuckoo Marans, Partridge Rocks, Buff Orpingtons, Silver Laced and Columbian Wyandottes, Rhode Island Reds, Cinnamon Queens, Black Giants, and a few other varieties roam over several acres and through the woods. They have fun all day digging holes and rearranging mulch. Meanwhile, they clear the land of chiggers and ticks. The birds are pasture and woodland fed, and the eggs are produced under organic conditions. They are all vaccinated at NPIP-certified hatcheries. Danni a rescue Doberman who doubles as Peregrine's Therapy Dog, protects the wandering flock from low flying hawks and other predators.
To keep the birds healthy, Peregrine has read books and blogs on raising chickens, interviewed local experts, and taken a course on eggs at NC State. She is in charge of candling and cleaning the eggs. Harry and Peregrine are committed to sustaining this beautiful farm. Both parents and chickens are proud to share their eggs with several local establishments including, Panciuto, a wonderful farm-to-table restaurant in downtown Hillsborough and Forget-Me-Not Farm’s CSA.