A Bundaberg Region family is providing a safe haven for all creatures great and small on their property Splitters Farm
Carly and Ashley Clark and their five children care for more than 160 animals which have come to them to be re-homed.
The Clarks purchased the farm at Splitters Creek in 2017 with a view to giving their children the benefit of a farm-based, rural upbringing and to create a place for rescued and abused animals.
“It's always been important to us that the kids don't spend too much time on technology and are brought up on a farm and live off the land,” Carly said.
“Then it started to become a sanctuary for animals.
“We have goats, sheep, horses, mini horses, alpacas and much more.”
The couple, who have full-time jobs outside of farm work, get the help they need on their 160-acre property from a farmhand and their children.
The team work day and night to provide the animals with the love and care that they need to survive and live a healthy, happy farm life.
“Some of these animals have come to us injured but many of them have come from people who have had a change of circumstance and can no longer look after them,” Carly said.
“It is incredibly flattering to know that people have seen our Facebook page and have given their beloved animals over to us.
“They trust us to care for their animals.”
Carly said growing up on the property had been highly beneficial for her children, who have experienced all facets of farm life.
“Our kids love looking after the animals but they also learn the harder aspects about life,” she said.
Children experience life cycle at Splitters Farm
“The fact is, some of the animals don't survive; it's not always the happy side of farm life that they experience.
“They definitely have an appreciation for how much work goes into running a farm.”
Carly said the farm was experiencing an influx of pregnant animals at the moment, with many babies expected to be born in the spring.
“All of our goats are pregnant as well as some of the alpacas and the pigs,” she said.
“We are going to have an explosion of babies very soon!”
With more animals on the way, Carly said she was extremely thankful for the ongoing support they had received from businesses in the Bundaberg Region.
“Many businesses have come on board to support us,” she said.
“We provide large scrap bins to some of the cafes in town to throw in all of their fruit and vegetable scraps.
“At the end of the day, I pick the bins up and take them home to feed the animals.”
Big passion for animals
Carly said it was her passion for animals from a young age that had been the driving force behind Splitters Farm.
“I have always been a bleeding heart when it comes to animals,” she said.
“We are in an excellent position where we can look after them.
“But it's not about the farm itself, it's about the amazing animal characters.”
The couple now dream of creating a rural farmstay destination by mid-2020 to showcase their animals and to complement the wonderful beach and distillery experiences that Bundaberg already has on offer.
“Kids should understand where food comes from and what better way than to have them out collecting eggs and involved in the daily duties of running a farm,” Carly said.