La Ferme aux ânes
Donkey rides - Donkey livestock
Visits : All year by appointment. -
Regions : Casinca - Castagniccia - Costa Verde
Categories : Culture/nature/well-being/leisure
When Joel Poli decided to take two donkeys in at the Prunete farm in 2000, he was seeking to satisfy his passion for horses. However, this former blacksmith (with twenty years’ experience) quickly discovered the impressive potential of these animals.
"A whole generation has abandoned these animals, especially after the exodus of the population to the coast... and the development of the internal combustion engine! But our elders weren’t wrong, and we are only now rediscovering many of their qualities."
Wishing to put paid to ignorant claims that donkies are stupid, Joel decided to return this farm animal to its former honour, as a sensitive and devoted companion, emblematic of the island. He didn’t have much to start with, but the challenge didn’t put him off. His desire for independence led him to think up of new ways to develop his business: school tours, donkeys for Christmas markets...
Today, with a herd of fourteen donkeys, all bred and trained at The Donkey Farm, Joel travels the length of the Costa Verde to introduce visitors of all ages to this unique aspect of the region’s heritage. At the same time, he is also renewing a family tradition on the property he inherited from his grandfather: the production of hazelnuts, harvested and sold in bulk. Joel philosophically concludes that "there is a new relationship with the land, and with animals. This almost certainly comes from a need for reassurance in a world that has lost its way."
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