Talla is a 60 hectare sheep dairy farm owned by Art and Jill Eastham. The farm is near the Tararua Ranges west of Masterton, Wairarapa.
Farming sheep for wool and meat production in England, Scotland, Canada and New Zealand.
Shearing and scanning contracting. 25 years of scanning in NZ.
Art and Jill were awarded the Meridian Energy Excellence Award (East Coast Ballance Farm Environment Awards).
Talla Farm was converted from a 60 Hectare sheep/beef farm (with a disused 10 aside herringbone dairy) into a 12 aside sheep dairy. Top European genetics were sourced to improve milk production. A variety of forage crops maintain good quality feed throughout the year.
Sheep dairying supplying Kingsmeade.
In 2016 Jill and Art Eastham purchased what was a rundown cow dairy farm near Masterton. In two short years they have redeveloped this tired Wairarapa block into an extraordinary sheep dairy operation. They have renovated and refitted the old cowshed to milk sheep. They have re-grassed, replanted, re-fenced the farm; installed effluent and water systems, and turned the old farmhouse into a stunning modern, comfortable home. What they have created is an extraordinary example of what sheep dairying can do to reuse, repurpose and recycle small bovine/sheep-beef farms.
At the core of this endeavour however is Jill and Art’s love of sheep. But don’t get me wrong. They are not folksy sentimentalists when it comes to animals. They have an enduring, focused attachment to sheep as a highly productive farm animal and are bent on getting the best out of their animals. Most recently they have embarked on an impressive breeding programme using imported Lacaune genetic material. The new offspring will run onto their milking platform this spring. While there is a certain nervousness about the new breed across New Zealand sheep dairy industry, there is no question, that given their background and focus, if Jill and Art Eastham can’t also make a success of this crucial part of the venture, then no one else is likely to do it either.