Birthday girl Jenny’s Jersey joy

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Many girls turning 18 years old would request clothes, make-up or perfume for their birthdays, but not Kintyre’s Jenny Semple.

Instead, young farmer Jenny asked her parents for either Pygmy goats, miniature donkeys or Jersey calves and she was overjoyed when she awoke on September 14, to find two eight-week-old Jersey calves.

Jenny, who lives at Kilkeddan Farm, Peninver, with her mum Ina, dad Gavin and 16-year-old sister Kathryn, said: ‘I had been pestering Mum and Dad for ages, and I think they decided the Jerseys would be the best option rather than goats or donkeys.’

Jenny, a trainee dental nurse and part-time waitress, also has a small flock of Texel sheep and has shown promise as a young farmer, winning the Rotary Club of Campbeltown’s young stock person of the year in 2016.

Jenny named her new pets Jeannie and Josie and has already started prepping them for future shows. Jeannie is eight days older than Josie and both were sourced from Graham’s The Family Dairy, near Stirling.

The calves were transported to Kintyre by P McKerral & Co and collected from their depot by Gavin the night before Jenny’s birthday, and she had no idea she was getting the dairy delights until the morning of her birthday.

‘The people at Graham’s Dairy sent a Graham’s jacket for Jenny, along with the calves, since it was her birthday,’ said Ina. ‘We wrapped it up for her and when she opened it she asked about the Graham’s logo on the front.

‘Gavin then signalled to her to come outside and took her to the shed where the calves were and the minute she saw them she jumped in with them – she was delighted!

‘At this point she realised the tie-up between the jacket and the calves.’

Jenny added, ‘I couldn’t believe I’d actually got them!’

Although Jeannie and Josie are pets, they will eventually be in the milking parlour along with the rest of the family’s dairy herd, which won best herd at the Kintyre Holstein Breeders Club’s annual herds competition this year.

Jenny hopes she’ll always live on a farm, saying: ‘I’d really miss the milk if I didn’t, the supermarket milk is more watery in comparison to farm milk, straight from the cows.’

And she plans to continue growing her own stock, gradually expanding her Texel flock, with plans for more: ‘I still hope to get goats and donkeys in the future, once I am able to get them myself.’

Jenny Semple, with her eight-week-old Jersey calves, Jeannie and Josie. 50_c40calves01