Flip Flop Ranch

orphan lambs

Navajo-Churro lambs are cuddly as well as adapted to our climate

Flip Flop Ranch is a family farm in Southern California that connects people, especially kids, to their food. We help them understand where food comes from and why it’s so important to care for their environment and their bodies.

We are a real working farm that helps to preserve endangered species livestock and raise healthy food for the local community.

The rate at which livestock breeds are disappearing is “alarming” and the UN is warning that precious genes could be lost forever.

Traditionally, farmers throughout the world have raised thousands of different animal breeds and plant varieties. However, since today’s industrial farms rely upon only a few specialized types of livestock and crops, thousands of non-commercial animal breeds and crop varieties have disappeared, along with the valuable genetic diversity they possessed. Fortunately, a growing number of sustainable farmers, such as ourselves, are preserving agricultural variety and protecting biodiversity by raising “heritage” animal breeds and crops.

We raise heritage breeds such as Dorkings, Cotton Patch geese, Nigerian Dwarf goats, Guinea hogs, Australorps, Ancona ducks and Bourbon Red Turkeys.  Heritage breeds are traditional livestock breeds that were raised by farmers in the past, before the drastic reduction of breed variety caused by the rise of industrial agriculture. Within the past 15 years, 190 breeds of farm animals have gone extinct worldwide, and there are currently 1,500 others at risk of becoming extinct. In the past five years alone, 60 breeds of cattle, goats, pigs, horses and poultry have become extinct.

An American Guinea Hog Piglet

American Guinea Hogs were brought from Africa during the slave trade and are one of the few pigs that can handle hot weather.

Our gaggle of Cotton Patch Geese is one of the biggest in the WORLD and yet we only own about 50 geese.   These geese are so rare that we drove 56 hours round trip (not including the week we spent broken down) to Texas to purchase and bring home one of only a handful of foundation flocks in order to help keep this breed from extinction.

It is of vital importance that we don't let these ancient and unusual breeds perish.  Their genes are adapted to harsh conditions or specialized jobs.  Our Navajo-Churro sheep, for example, can make it through our blazing desert summers in full wool without hardly noticing while the common industrial breeds would die of heat stroke.  Our goal is to help preserve these rare and amazing breeds while also sharing the joy of farming with all of you.

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