Teresa Gilsenan was born and bred in the area of Carrickmacross in the heartland of traditional Irish chicken farming country. She is married and lives on her 32-hectare farm with her husband Eugene and she has 4 children. Teresa has been farming for most of her life and started rearing chickens for Manor Farm in 1991 as a second income. As well as the chickens Teresa also helps to look after a suckler herd.
She is proud of the quality of her farm and the extra dimension that Manor Farm brings to the infrastructure of the farm. The guidelines laid down by the company are very rigorous and are constantly supervised daily by Teresa herself and also by regular visits from the Manor Farm Farms Advisor who also continually checks on the welfare of the birds. The feed diet that the birds eat comes from the Manor Farm Chicken only Feed Mill and this feed constituent changes depending on the age of the birds.
A typical day starts at 8 in the morning when Teresa walks among the chickens to check that they are all OK and feeding well. She checks on the ventilation systems, makes sure that the temperature is at the optimum for the age of the birds and also ensures that there is adequate feed in the silos as well as checking that the bedding is OK. After this first check, she heads back to the house for breakfast and then to Mass. This checking of the chickens is repeated a number of times during the day. In between all of this she has to fit in her daily duties in the home.
The Bord Bia and Department of Agriculture required paperwork is also filled out daily. Because of the nature of looking after chickens, this is a job that runs 24 hours a day and 7 days a week which makes it difficult to take a break without huge support. It is also for this reason that makes Chicken Farming well suited to families. These families, in turn, pass on their skill, knowledge and experience to their future generations.
Outside of farming Teresa enjoys walking, social dancing, pilates, yoga and going to football matches to watch her local Magheracloone GFC as well as the Monaghan county team. She also loves supporting Manchester United.
Teresa as with all our chicken Farmers also loves to eat chicken and among her favourite chicken dishes she has:
Lemon & garlic chicken kebabs
Chicken curry with basmati rice
Honey & mustard chicken breasts
Stuffed roast chicken with lemon sauce
Chicken with cream cheese, garlic & herbs.