Winter Hay Feeder


December 5, 2017

We have been trialing the newly built hay feeder. The cows like it well. We had to turn one gate around on the feedlot for animal movement, but the feeder is working out very well. The cattle stick their heads through to eat. They eat at different times, but even when most of the herd east together, even the most timid animal can get a spot at the table.

They do eat some from the ends where the green gates are located, but mostly just clean up what ever has spilled out. There has been very little waste feeding the cattle this way. I can click the “success” button on this project! The feeder is easy to fill using the skid steer. The animals use it very well. The percentage of wasted hay is minimal. Lastly, I only have to move hay once a week or less, so it is a great time saver too!

This feeder is permanent, but building one on skids would be a great option for many small farmers. You provide some protection for the hay, as well as, the animals. This could even provide shade from the hot summer sun, while feeding hay when pastures are declining. I recommend trying one on your small holdings in some form or another. The benefits far out weigh the costs.

Eggs Actly
August 27, 2014, 9:54 pm
Filed under: August 2014 | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Pullet Egg

Pullet Egg

August 27, 2014

This little egg is from one of our pullets. These little girls are just starting to lay. They take their job seriously. They give all they have and I am thankful. After all, who could ask for more than that?

The little ladies are getting used to their coop. They seem to be happy. Today we got ten eggs from ten hens. I ask you is that 100% or 1000% ? All I know is that it is a grand slam! A hen lays one egg a day when everything is perfect…. so, I’d say they like it here 😮

We have been almost six weeks without hens. This is one of the longest stretches in my life, for buying grocery store eggs. I hope it is a very long time before I have to do it again. In my opinion, there is nothing better than farm fresh, free-range eggs… and brown ones to boot!

Some will say that I am crazy, white or brown makes no difference. Perhaps they are correct, but for me, brown are best. The freshness is only a problem when you boil them. The shell sticks to the egg white, because a “gas layer” has not had time to form inside the shell. I’m okay with that… I’ll eat mine fresh , thank you very much.

Eggs bought in the local store, have been around awhile. Sure they are safe to eat, have a “sell by date” and are pretty good to most folks. I say however, if those same folks tried fresh eggs from happy, free range hens…they might want a change too.

If beer is best when “brewed from a mountain stream”, perhaps that is why eggs taste so good from hens who drink fresh water, eat grass and bugs along with choice grains, in a life free from stress. Agree or not its up to you, but I say , “That is “eggs actly” why they taste so good!

On The Move
April 29, 2014, 4:43 am
Filed under: April 2014 | Tags: , , , ,
Here they come!

Here they come!

April 29, 2014

Our flock has been increased by double. The baby lambs have all been born. We lost a few in the bad winter storm ten days ago, but the rest are doing pretty good. There are always a few weak ones that die along the way, but so far so good 😮

We usually lamb in mid May, but this year are about a month early. We raise grass-fed lamb. The lambs eat our good pasture and mom’s milk. They grow fast and are ready for “freezer camp’ in four to five months. Lambs raised in this manner, make mild and tasty meat.

The grass in May grows quite fast, keeping up with the hungry ewes. April grass is a bit slower, so moving the flock often is necessary. Yesterday, we made our first move. It went well. The babies got a little scared at first, but the moms restored order in no time.

Once all of the sheep got the idea of what was happening, they followed along just fine. Once we got to the back lane, the mothers knew exactly where they were going. They walked right past me, paying me little attention… the babies? Well, they go where mom goes, at least for now. Independence will rule the lambs in a few weeks, but for now, they know that mom has all the answers and all the milk!!

And there they go!

And there they go!