Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Farm Additions

Two Columbia ewes Halley received as a scholarship from the Columbia Ewe Association.

200 Buff Orpington chicks to raise for meat.

A red front door and matching chairs.

Two pairs of hens and chicks.

Four chicken tractors for the previously introduced chicks.

A trailer for hauling sheep, cows and who knows what else.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Feeling Like Farmers

We reached two milestones on the farm so far this summer.  First, we cut, raked and baled our own hay with our own equipment.  Second, we used our own generator to power our necessary items during a recent power outage.  Neither of those things may seem like a big deal to those who do not live on farms.  They also may not seem like a big deal to those who have lived on a farm their entire lives.  To those who moved into the farming life, I hope you will be able to recognize our excitement and share in it.

There are many time we move about the business of our farm feeling like frauds, posers not farmers.  Putting up our own hay and dealing with loss of electricity on our own made us feel like farmers.  It's good to recognize those milestones and take note of those successes.  It's especially important to take note so we can remember that feeling on a day when we want to feel like a farmer.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Turkey Time

 Our turkey project was a success.  We were able to hatch six of our turkey eggs.  Currently we have nine turkeys, six poults and three adults, in our turkey house.  It appears that three of the poults are toms and three are hens.  We are still discussing the future prospects of our birds. 

We will be purchasing more incubators over the winter and expanding our turkey space.  We all agree that turkeys are one of our favorite animals so far.  They are engaging and interesting to watch.  Plus, the toms are really cool looking.  That they are also tasty is a big bonus. 

Commitment to Chicken

Two hundred chicks are now in residence on the farm.  We are going to be raising meat birds for sale.  For the past two years we raised chicken just for our own consumption.  This year we are expanding.  We are also investigating how to out-source the harvest.  None of the butchers in our area process chicken.  We hope the Amish community nearby may offer some good options for us. 

Our chickens will be technically free range and grass fed.  Rob is working on a new design for our chicken tractors to make them lighter and easier to manage.  The new tractors are looking great.  As soon as we have a completed model I'll post a picture.