Monday, June 26, 2017

Things Have Changed!

Wow!  Has it really been so long since our last update?  Where has the time gone?  Coincidentally, today is my (the owner) birthday!  Happy birthday to me!  No, it's not so special, but I have no complaints.  So what has changed in a year?  Well, let me tell you.
Let's start with the fowl, shall we?  I have sold chickens and went down to 18, bought chickens and went up to around 40, and sold chickens yet again and have gone down to an even dozen chickens.  We suspect the most recent addition infected my flock with mycoplasma gallisepticum infection, which is highly contagious.  It is with this that we have decided to close the flock, and no new chickens (either hatched or bought) will be bought, and no chickens will be offered for sale.  The flock will be closed until all chickens go in their own time.  Sadly, four of my girls have the motherly instinct, and they will be disappointed they will not be hatching clutches any more.  I will miss it, but it is necessary.
We were given another calf last December.  We named her Hallie (stands for Hallelujah).  She came from the same herd Oreo came from, and sadly for the same circumstances.  She is a beautiful beef girl, and will be bred next year to offer her first calf to our freezer.  Speaking of beef in the freezer, T-Bone is ripe for the picking.  We plan to take him to the processor in August to become our first home-grown beef.   We will also be breeding Annabelle in the next month or two.  We'll either have a heifer for sale or we'll be raising another steer for butcher.  For now, we do not need any more than the two girls, and though it is very difficult for me to say "no more," I will have to let her go if we get a heifer.
We no longer have any turkeys. We are down to 1 doe (Kittie), 2 geese (Peyton and 'Live), and 1 duck (Milla).
I am pleased to be where we are.  I feel as though we have grown a lot since last year, and our progress is becoming increasingly substantial and less of a dream.  It is turning into my reality, and with it, I have lots of pride.
We decided not to have a garden this year.  We will be working the land into a beautiful working space rather than just tilling up a large plot to let it become overrun by weeds.  We plan on creating raised beds to make it more manageable for me (since I do the majority of the work).  We'll post pictures when finished.  I have been neglecting the blog recently since we have decided to do away with our Internet service, it makes it difficult to make posts.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Getting some things done

Fall is here! Shhh! Fall is here! I don't care what you say, Fall is here! Look... The first day of Fall is in 3 days. Let me have my moment.

Okay, check it out. About this time every year, I thin out my Flock. Well, this year is no different. In all, I have 32 chickens, 4 turkeys, 4 geese, and a duck. This is after I sold several chickens. I'm trying to sell 6 chicks from a "grab special" at a farm store I bought a week ago. I already sold a dozen, so I'm not completely put out here. I also have a pair of Blue Ameraucanas and a Blue Wheaton cockerel from a prominent show breeder. I sold 10 chickens over the weekend, and now I have 32. As for the geese, I need to sell two or three, a pair or trio, if you will. The problem lies in there not being a market for them. They are good alert geese. I will give the ad another week before taking it down and trying again in the Spring. I love my geese, and I don't want to sell, but I need a pen too. Hubs needs to fix my coop and set up a huge run so the fox won't get them. (Yeah, we have several foxes around here.)


(Pictured above) The Cornish Rock Pullet, the two Barred Rock ladies, two Polish, a Black Copper Marans hen and a Bantam EE have been sold. We still have all others.

(Pictured below) My Ameraucanas. I am focusing on the White variety, so I'm selling the Blue pair. You will also spot the three layers pullets from a replacement order: Elsa the White Rock, Anna the Red Sexlink,  and Laserbeak the Barred Rock. I did not name them.

 
(Pictured below) is my front yard minus the fat chicken. You see my delimma? No run, too many lost feathers and poop. A whole Lotta nope going on right now.

(Pictured below) The most recent haul to the feed store. Who would have thought such small animals eat so much. 😉


On to other news, here are some chicks, goats, and a cow selfie.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Sold More Chicks Today

I've been selling chicks the last few days, and I'm down to 44!  Amazing!  :)    Minus another 12, and we'll be down to 32, but in a couple of weeks we'll be getting 4 more (three for Luke plus one Spitz).  Hopefully I can get the remaining ones I have for sale gone.  At least then I can simply relocate my chickens once the new coop is built.  I want a nice one that people ooh and ah over.  DREAM BIG!  :D

Chick Went to the Vet

Yes, I took a chick (Buff Laced Polish) to the vet to see what's going on with her leg and what we can do to fix it. As you can see from the following picture, her leg doesn't sit right. I thought it was because she had a slipped tendon. Doc says otherwise.
She is currently in an inside brooder with a cast-like splint to see if we can slowly work her leg back into its proper position. Doc said it could be congenial, nutritional, or from an injury. We are treating nutritional first, getting a chick starter with vitamin B and Calcium. She collected a fecal sample to test for cocci, which she (the chick) is thankfully negative.

She is supposed to go back Monday or Tuesday for a re-dressing. I will be updating this particular post with updates as it progresses. I normally would not take a chicken to a vet, but I need to learn, and this vet shares an interest in chicken rearing. (Chicken tenders are we. 😉


(Update: Vet chick died)

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

May Update

Aside from the sells (just sold 2 Polish chicks, Pekins pending, Buffs pending, Speckled Sussex pending, 1 or 2 Ameraucana cockerels pending, Blue Ameraucana pair pending), the rest of the farm is doing beautifully.  I need to mow, pretty badly, and I need to work on cleaning up the yard (a weekend activity coming), T-Bone has been banded today so NO chances of early pregnancy.  Hoorah!

Bambi is adorable, as always.


This gale, no name, has an old injury.  She has a slipped tendon, and we aren't sure what to do.  I tried popping it back into place, but it has already healed, and I do not have the professional means to help, so I called around, and we have a vet appointment set up for her.  Hopefully we can get her fixed up.

We have an amazing group of adolescence.  Several are staying, though at some point, some will be chosen to be sold.  I finally found a Cochin I adore, this little girl.  

Sablepoot (Sable-Poot) the Sablepoot (pronounced Sah-Blay-Pooh), also known as a Dutch Booted Bantam.

Popeye, the one-eyed Polish.

Little Mister.  He's the sweetest little cockerel in the world.

Sale Post

Working on selling some chicks and juviniles to make some room and lighten my load a bit.  Three Ameraucanas are gone, still have five left (Blue Wheaten, Wheaten, and White) at $5 each.


And a Blue pair (pullet and cockerel), though I'm not sure for how much to sell them for....
cockerel pullet

All these chicks.... 15 total (plus one Cornish x Rock I just didn't have the heart to butcher)



I'll likely post more.  I have about 55 chickens, and I need to get down to about 30.  If I can sell all the ones listed, I'll be pretty close to my goal number.  I hope I can get there soon....

I sold 2 goslings, and I'm selling 6 ducks, 3 Buffs and 3 Jumbo Pekin.  Afterwards, I'll be down to just 4 geese and 1 duck.



Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Eventful, Productive, Bitter-Sweet

Yesterday held to be an eventful day.  The weather we had reflected the mood of the entire day, as the day progressed being nice, beautiful, cloudless, and warm turned almost suddenly to complete cloud cover and pouring rain, lightening up slightly with a touch of sun.

We left early to go fishing.  We had such a great time, finding a wonderful little spot to fish that I loved.  The sun was shining, the area was grassy and not covered in stinky fish like the dams often are.  It was perfect.  As soon as we got home, probably close to 2:00, I find both goats in labor!  Bootsie was on the porch just bleating her little heart out, as her brother was pushing her around trying to mount her, the poor girl.  (Amos, the brother, was working on finding a new home after tearing out the fence at my parents', and immediately was taken to the back yard to stay separated from the girls.)  I found Meri in the yard, surrounded by curious geese and ducks, pushing like mad.  Maybe 30 minutes later (max), we had our first kid delivered.  This little girl is a spitting image of her daddy Moses.  Next, up on the porch, we have Bootsie.  To save a lot of drama, I'll say neither her or the baby made it.  It was a single birth, but the baby was just too big to get through the birthing canal, and would have made Bootsie bleed out.  I made the tough decision to put her down and do a C-Section to make sure we didn't lose any babies if there was a twin in there.  There was not.

 Meet little Bambi.She is 2 days old in these pictures. (taken the day after "today")



Today was also a fishing day.  We woke up early again to hit the road.  We came back home, played with little Bambi (Meri's baby), sold Amos, and fixed BBQ sandwiches with homemade coleslaw and shredded BBQ pork (recipe follows), and sweet Hawaiian buns.  Oh, man!  Talk about delicious!  If you attempt the following recipe, be aware, it isn't exact.  I guesstimate after reading a recipe online for coleslaw, and I omit onion.  I don't care for raw onion, but by all means, include a small yellow onion (or red if it is your preference) for the recipe.The coleslaw itself makes LOTS, so you can half it to make a smaller portion.  I would say it made enough for 10 servings (at least).

Recipes

Coleslaw:
Dressing:
  • 1/3 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 cup real mayonaise (not salad dressing and not Miracle Whip
  • 1 tsp Kosher Salt 
  • 1 tsp ground White Pepper (white is stronger than black)
  • about 1 tbsp of onion powder (to replace to omitted onion)
Mix together, taste, and adjust above ingredients to taste.  Once satisfied, set aside (or refrigerate) for later use.  

Coleslaw Salad
  • 1 small head of cabbage (the smallest you can find)
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
Chop up and mix.  A food processor would be okay, but try your best to get uniform sizes.  Grading the carrots will get you a good consistency with good texture.  Mix the dressing in, cover, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.  Letting it set for a whole day is best, however it is still good after three hours.


Pulled Pork Barbecue from the Oven:

Dust of your cast iron dutch oven for this, and you won't regret it.  Get a good quality pork loin roast of any size to fit your family.  The internal temperature must reach at least 145*F (medium rare).  I have not started making my own BBQ sauce yet, so I went with good 'ole Sweet Baby Ray's Hickory & Brown Sugar.  You can choose your own sauce or make your own,  Pour the sauce over the pork loin, and cover the dutch oven. Place in a preheated 400* oven for 1 hour, lower your oven's temperature to 250* bake for another 2 hours.  When it's done, pull out the dutch oven, take off the lid, and let your roast rest for 5 minutes.  Shred the pork, mix it all together (add more sauce if needed).  

Take out the coleslaw, uncover, and stir well.  Taste before serving, adding more salt and pepper if needed.  If your dressing is too watered down, add more mayonnaise to thicken it up. When it is satisfactory, it is ready to serve.

Lo and behold!  The finished product!
Beware!  This is pretty messy.