Livestock and wildlife from rural America
Guinea Fowl make a great addition to your livestock. Raising them on your farm or homestead can help keep gardens tidy and bug free.
Here are a handful of things to consider about your personal situation that will help you get started with raising pigs on farm land.
I am always amazed by animals' natural instincts.
my mind floated back to 5 years ago when Chad (Super Farmer) and I thought it would be fun to start a little farm with no experience and deceiving thoughts of “I’m sure it will be easy, how hard can it be”??!!
Casey Thomas can retire in peace with the help of the University of Kansas’s RedTire Program.
This New Englander moves to the country and finds small, tasty adventures in simplicity.
In this episode of Tough GRIT, find out which woman will muck her stall and saddle up her horse the speediest.
After a year of beekeeping, we are gifted with glorious honey from our own hive!
This post is about tips for blogging, the mother of all dandelions, planting corn, first tomato bloom, and building a entry way flower bed.
Season this Roasted Leg
of Lamb Recipe with garlic cloves, Dijon
mustard and fresh mint, and serve new potatoes on the side.
Fresh thyme, rosemary herb and Yukon Gold potatoes added to lamb shoulder yields a delicious Lamb-Potato Gratin Recipe.
Ground lamb, basil pesto and pine nuts are among the toppings for this Lamb Pizza Recipe.
Balsamic vinegar is
the main ingredient in the lamb chop marinade used when making this Grilled
Lamb Chops Recipe.
Dried herbs season ground lamb for this Shepherds Pie Recipe with a mashed potato topping.
Grazing management helps to keep overgrazing from becoming a problem in the pasture.
Drop spindle is a good place to start for beginners turning natural fibers into yarn.
I knew better than to allow several roosters to remain in our coop, but I was too soft-hearted to eliminate them. The following account is the result of that decision.
Laura tells the story of her first chicken coop and how it has evolved over the past year or so.
Curry powder, garlic cloves and coconut combine to make this Lamb Curry Stew Recipe.
Using organic meats, create lamb recipes such as Shepherd’s Pie, Roasted Leg of Lamb, or Lamb Pizza.
Shepherd usually doesn’t have to worry during lambing season; ewes take care of lambs without much difficulty.
sheep shelter can be the key to a smooth and comfortable lambing time.
Hank talks about what led him down the path of raising Katahdin sheep on his homestead.
Owning and raising chickens is not glamorous. It takes hard work, financial investment and compassionate commitment.
Putting rabbits on pasture without them killing each other.
Thankfully, when I was a kid, we never had to buy dogs. For one thing, we didn't have the money for that, and secondly, I recall that our dogs always just came to us or someone apparently gave them to us. That was the case with Shep.
Hey, poop happens. It amazes me that people are grossed out by natural eggs, preferring instead to eat sterilized and cleaned up store eggs.
Fishing is not only enjoyable, it's an essential survival skill and one of the easiest ways to find food in the wild.
There's a reason every home before the 1900's had a cow in the yard.
Follow the metamorphosis of an American Copper caterpillar into a tiny, fast-flying and playful butterfly.
Old crib + $100 = Chicken Coop!
It's never too early to get ready for the long cold Winter. Preparation tips from Itzy Bitzy Farm
Mint naturally lowers body temperatures, so it makes a wonderfully refreshing summertime drink. Why not brew some fresh mint leaves in your coffee maker for a quick, easy pitcher of iced tea?
It can be a scary time when you're trying to treat your injured chicken, especially when you aren't sure what to do. In this article, I share directions on how to treat your chicken back to health!
The true story of Baby the Buff Orphington who brought surprise, wonder, love and joy to a small homestead.
Learn all about goats, from types of breeds to making cheese with their milk.
What could surpass the excitement of owning our first chickens? Why, our first egg of course!
Our bad landlord experience leads to new purpose for an old trailer. Join us as we renovate rental space into usable work space! Home school space, brooder room, processing house, and quilting area all rolled in to one.
What do you do when a broody hen refuses to stop being broody?
A Sad Day on the Homestead-our experience with our mini pig's farrowing.
Here are a few simple tips on how to keep your outdoor rabbits cool in the summer heat.
Enjoy greater self-sufficiency with fresh milk straight from your own dairy goat.
Natural herbal fly control measures are inexpensive, safe and easy to prevent flies from invading your chicken coop and run areas.
What started out as helping a neighbor inspect her hive, turned into a day capturing two honeybee swarms!
Composting chicken manure in deep litter in the coop will build better chicken health and reduce labor.
Learn the basics of raising animals, whether for hobby farming or for consumption.
There will come a time when you have to administer medication to your chickens orally. It's generally not the easiest thing to do, but my tips will make it simple.
To deal with a persistently muddy pathway I elected to build a quick, inexpensive boardwalk.
As the temperatures rise, your coop might start to smell a bit less pleasant than you would want. This all natural refresh spray will provide a bit of aromatherapy for your chickens.
Forget the high price tags at grocery stores for pork. Raise your own healthy meat.
Learn how we make cream and butter from our dairy goats.
We found out the hard way that cinder blocks can be dangerous in the coop.
Sarah is a city girl who grew up on styrofoam packaged meat and now shares her views and experiences on raising animals for meat herself.
These five simple tips will help ensure that the eggs you collect from your coop are clean and ready to display on your counter or put into the refrigerator - no washing needed.
Learn about the different types of fences that keep animals in and out, and the benefits of good fences.
One of the worst habits that chickens can develop is eating their own eggs. This post helps the backyard chicken keeper to understand, prevent, and treat this disturbing problem in the flock.
Through watercolor paintings, Prosek has dedicated his unique talent to bringing life trout species of North America, several of which are becoming critically endangered fish.
The honeybee is fascinating. Along my journey of self-reliant living comes bees. I am setting up 2 colonies and will get about 80lbs a season from 1 hive.
Cow's just wanna have fun
Feeling burnout and unfulfilled? Homesteading may hold the answer.
Mrs. D shears her llamas and talks Mabel the dairy cow into having another calf.
Many commercial antibiotics and other medications are not labeled for use in chickens, or have withdrawal periods during which the eggs should not be eaten. Why not try using oregano as a natural antibiotic instead?
Cisco saved this little calf's life by finding him when he was less than 24 hours old, separated from his mama and lost. Now they're best buddies!
You want to keep your loveable pets or working companions around on the farm. Learn how to keep farm dogs safe with these tips.
We took an old metal 50's fridge and turned it into a large smoker. Now we can smoke our home grown meats for less!
Learn how to make hay by hand and you can feed your animals throughout the winter.
The too often not discussed downside of having chickens. Sure, the rewards can be great, but chickens also take time and a real commitment from their owners.
When our neighbors' brand new calf went missing, our dogs (past and present) came to the rescue.
This post is about the return of GRIT blogs, Nebraska Weather, Terra Nova Gardens neighborhood characters, and Daffodils.
To every thing there is a season...unfortunately, spring fever seems to be at odds with spring cleaning!
Read how I assisted in the birth of our three Alpine kids.
A day in my life; having animals in the country.
Try these sheep herding tips and you’re flock will be following you like a boss.
Just a little list of what we rural Arkansas folks ate during the 50s and 60s
Creating your own rabbit breed the wrong way.
A no cost, easy to build chicken coop.
Life's lessons are the best way to learn how to do something. On the family farm, the opportunities to learn abound. We learned a lot about making maple syrup this year and we can't wait for next year to do it better!
This easy recipe for dog treats will help give your furry family members fresh breath and shiny coats.
After overwintering two hives successfully, this first year beekeeper shares some valuable tips she has learning along her journey.
A lot of things can go wrong when clearing a space for a deer feeder. Read about how to correctly cut branches, where to place the deer feeder and more.
This blog describes the bipolar weather in Nebraska, the signs of Spring, the flowers in bloom, and the progress on the garden fence panels.
Have a few too many eggs in your fridge? Here is the solution!
Interested in getting pigs this Spring? Here is some information to get you started.
Linda Heitman shares info on goat breeds and gives pointers on raising goats.
Numerous states report cougar sightings.
This is how I got a solitary chick to eat and drink.
Our friend gives us a basic lesson in stone masonry. How to smoothly split a stone into two workable halves.
How we made a secure farrowing pen for our pig without spending a dime!
Part 2 of the coop building adventure - the coop get completed enough to move the chicks and ducks in to their spacious new quarters.
As a child visiting my grandparents farm, we would play outside until well after the sun set. Moonlight Starlight was one of our favorites
After a long, hard Michigan winter we give our bees a springtime boost to get them through till the flowers bloom.
This step-by-step guide to beginning beekeeping will help you set up your beeyard and make it through the first season, battling Varroa mites with natural solutions.
This Georgia farmer raises 60,000 free-range chickens in specially designed chicken tractors.
A mountain lion was most likely to blame for the maiming of one of Hank’s young calves.
Determined to find out why clover is often included on lists of harmful plants for your chickens, I did a bit of research and spoke with some experts to find out the lowdown on feeding clover to your flock.
What happens when you give a pig some peanut butter.
In a recent chicken workshop, I warned my students that chicks are not like puppies, you don’t want the calm one who is taking a nap when you inspect the litter. Quite the opposite, when you pick out chicks, you want the ones who are most lively and active.
What's in a name?
Learn about the different ways you can adjust the temperature in your brooder to ensure your chicks are comfortable.
Sometimes life goes a bit crazy when animals escape.
Homestead Redhead solution for those nasty chicken eating hawks.
The first in a series of chicken talk and care, Homestead Redhead style.
With 12 chicks and 3 ducklings in the extra bedroom, we knew we needed to hustle and get a permanent coop built.
The story of this year's kidding experience at Iron Oak Farm.
Every parent has to share baby pics and videos - we're no different... but with our goat kids!
The not so peaceful morning on the homestead.
Your goat is in labor and you see the hind hooves coming, what do you do?
Free pallet turned into a hanging wine rack! Click through the pics for the easy instructions.
The account of what happens when the animals are smarter than you think!
Just like raising children, people have many different opinions and styles regarding how to raise and keep a flock of backyard chickens. This post might just might get you thinking about all the available options available.
Herd your cattle in the direction you want—calmly and efficiently—by understanding their flight zone.
This blog post is about battling scabies, enduring the snow storms, starting seedlings, and hauling Girl Scout cookies.
Our three precious goats are ready to deliver their babies any moment now! Here are some of the changes we've noticed with their bodies, behaviors and personalities as they prepare for this wonderful time.
As a backyard chicken owner, one of the most responsible things you can do for your flock is to learn how to cull a bird. You may never need to do it, but it's best to be prepared.
So, your goat is in labor and you think there is a problem. What do you do?
When a goat is in labor, sometimes the kid needs help to be born. This is Part 2 of Pulling a Kid.
The sometimes chaotic breakfast routine on the homestead.
Why I include how to kill a chicken in my workshops on getting chickens. Sometimes, it's just the right thing to do.
The best time to begin raising turkeys on the homestead is late May or early June. Learn about what types of turkeys to raise, when a turkey is ready for butchering and how to roast one once the holidays arrive.
Poultry Sass, The misadventures of hens
Try these six recipes to enjoy your farm-fresh eggs and stewing hens. You can use these tips for cooking with everything from excess eggs and heritage turkeys.
Learn how to make your own economical and natural homemade dishwasher powder.
Join me in the conclusion of this 5 part series-An Introduction to Keeping Chickens. Broodiness, keeping roosters, chicken diet, egg laying issues and more are covered.
We built a chicken tractor type coop for our one surviving chicken, who was more than ready to get out of the brooder. This is the story of Bess the chicken's moving day.
When Cultivating a Dream begins to become a reality.
Not every birth of a kid goat is a text book delivery. So, what to you do when your doe is having a problem with delivery. Part 1
It was bound to happen. What happens when your daughter accidentally gets locked inside the hen house.
I describe how I make my own lard after butchering a pig.
Dead trees that pose no danger to people or their surroundings can be left in place to provide valuable wildlife habitat. We left some standing in our backyard and are rewarded by daily visits from woodpeckers and other cavity-nesting birds.
I've been putting off thawing out my freezer for a good reason. It was an all day job. Looking for Bald eagles along the Tennessee River, I got more than I bargained for.
Mud is the most abundant crop in our fields right now!
Mrs. D defines what homesteading means to her.
When chickens escape, here's what you do to catch them.
So, you have your first dairy goat but do you know what to look for when the udder is developing. How do you know she will have a nice udder for milking?
Join us for part 4 in our Introduction to Keeping Chickens. Learn about their care during the first six weeks, how to set up your permanent coop and run, feeding your chickens, transitioning outside, and predator proofing.
It's freezing outside, how are you supposed to keep your flock warm?
Feeding chickens is easy when you let them peck around your pastures, garden and yard clippings.
Join us for an old fashioned coop raising!
This blog is about finishing up the food storage area, building fence panels out of free pallets, and developing a spring to water the garden.
If you're using free signage on rural roads to advertise your nonprofit's event, make sure your letters are large enough - lest you convey the wrong impression!
If you're using free signage on rural roads to advertise your nonprofit's event, make sure your letters are large enough - lest you convey the wrong impression!
DIY ‘Barrel Oven’ design takes outdoor oven construction to new heights. This portable pig pen would be a great tool for plowing with pigs.
Part 3 in my 5 part series, Introduction to Chicken Keeping, introduces the concept of the brooder and discusses your chicks' arrival.
Suet blocks are easy to make, use up leftover grease and will be enjoyed by your chickens as well as the wild birds on cold winter days.
Living the farm life means constantly learning new things! Here are a few new lessons we have learned since taking on the country life two years ago. Covering dirty pigs, farm smells, cats, and more!
Winter is finallly here and it's time to get ready for lambs.
Here is a list of turkey facts that may astound you and hopefully inspire you to raise some of your own.
A number of easy chicken recipes answer the question of what to serve for dinner.
Which came first, the Eggs or the Bacon? Livestock namin' isn't above a little whimsical reflection. I aim to 'keep it real' should I ever enter the wild and woolly world of 4H...
Life lessons from the milk room
What to watch for when your goat is in labor, the normal delivery of a baby goat.
If your chickens can't free range, and the ground is muddy or frozen, here's how to create a chicken dust bath to keep your chickens healthy and happy.
Learn all you need to know about meat and laying chicken breeds for the farmstead, including Marans, Old English Game fowl, Buff Orpingtons and Wyandottes.
Learn about all the supplies and food for baby chicks in Part 2 of my 5 Part Series.
We've found great joy in rescuing these great dogs by providing a secure, loving environment where they can recover.
Beulah Belle the Jersey Cow is the newest addition to the Green Eggs & Goats Farm!
It is never too late to do a little gardening - even if it is from the comfort of an arm chair. The critters, indoors and out, keep me company.
Raising chicks is fairly easy if you follow a few simple tips. My baby chick care guide will help you get started on the right track.
Part 1 of a 5 part series on getting started with backyard chickens.
Homemade sausage is a delicious and economical way to use all the bits of pork meat after butchering a pig. I describe how I made 12 pounds of breakfast sausage.
This blog is about the door installion of a food storage area, a law suit over patiented seeds, starting seeds inside, and going to the movies.
Hank is thrilled about Shannon Hayes' latest book: Long Way On A Little
My attempt at the Hooligan and my resolution for the year. I'm ready for spring.
I thought it would be fun to recap the top ten most-read chicken-related posts on my blog from 2012. Popular topics ranged from coop cleaning to making your own apple cider vinegar to sewing totes from empty feed bags.
Learn how to make muscadine wine from muscadines growing in your own yard or countryside.
Fresh snow is soon marked by the tracks of animals foraging, playing, escaping or just living. Even if you don't see the wildlife, enjoy learning more about their habits by reading the tales in the snow.
Splitting firewood with hand tools is a skill every homesteader should have. Even if you own a mechanical wood splitter, knowing how to use a splitting maul and wedges comes in handy when the wood is too large or the log splitter can't be used.
Summer and Fall brought piglets and fishing while winter brought a new Dexter calf. In addition new guides to raising chickens and cattle were released on Amazon.
Do you have any chickens in your flock with missing feathers? This post will help fellow chicken keepers get to the bottom of why their chickens are missing feathers. It offers possible causes and solutions. A must read for every chicken keeper.
Although Americans are spending less time in the wild, nature and wildlife need not elude us. Abundant wildlife can be found in our own backyards.
This post is about the best Christmas gift received this year, glass storge ideas for left over food, and building a wall for a food storage area.
An excerpt from Sarah's Great Grandmother's journal. Shows the food she canned in 1924 and 1925 for her family of four boys.
Cold day thoughts from the farm!
So you DON'T BELIEVE in Santa? You WILL believe in his reindeer, though...and they have plans far beyond the holidays!
I present the hooligans 2012 Christmas card.
Providing my family with pork that we have raised ourselves is a wonderful farm skill. To help you in preparing for the slaughter and butcher of your own pig, I have provided a checklist of items to have on hand and a list of things to do.
Climate change is no longer a theory - it is reality. As our rural environment struggles, we must increase our efforts in educating all to nurture our earth. Our farms feed us all and the slogan is true - No Farms, No Food.
Do you free range your chickens? Are you nervous about predators? Why not try supervised free-ranging? This successful technique allows your chickens the opportunity to free-range under your watch.
One of the most challenging aspects of raising backyard flocks is keeping them safe from predators. A secure run and coop goes a long way, but being able to identify the specific type of predator can also help a chicken keeper battle the threat.
A simple way to stop a cow from kicking when you milk her.
Uncover amazing butterflies, moths, spiders, dragonflies and other insects just beyond your back door.
Small animals as well are larger ones can be on the backroads both day and night. Watch for wildlife at the roadside to avoid collisions with animals.
Eggs contain every nutrient necessary for life except Vitamin C. Read more about the amazing egg.
Roping comes in handy when the goats get out.
From laying birds to meat birds to dual-purpose breeds, there are many options for a small flock.
Learn the best feed mixes to produce high-quality eggs from your backyard poultry flock.
Feeding honey bees in freezing temperatures can be a challenge. Try making and using a candy board this year. Once in place, it might just last you the entire winter season.
Any wildlife may be encountered on the road. The larger species, such as deer, can cause significant vehicle damage if hit. Watch for wildlife and learn their habits to help avoid collisions.
Boredom during the cold months can lead to pecking and other issues within your flock. Cure the winter blahs with edible vegetable garlands for your chickens!
Learn a few of our cherished ice fishing tips, from tip ups to ice houses.
What is an 'epic fail'?? It's when you build your front door UNDER the overflow pipe: GREAT idea in summer, EPIC FAIL in winter!
Learn how to clean fish for supper in 8 simple steps.
Clean water in stock tanks and fresh air will help your livestock face extreme weather conditions.
Mrs. D makes the most of a gift of mutton and shares her recipe for homemade laundry soap.
In a prototype facility, environmentally and economically friendly geothermal energy is now keeping turkeys comfortable during both cold and hot weather. The geothermal system reduces utilities costs for the farmer, which could bring down the price of turkey meat and keep America as the world’s top turkey exporter. Using geothermal also improves the bird’s air quality.
Being a deer rehaber is a joy but know that they are wild animals and need to be treated as such.
This blog talks about sheet mulching, a set back in making a pond, thoughts toward food storage, and canning history.
In this Hank’s Hints blog, learn how to attract birds with bird watering stations such as ponds, birdbaths and more.
Determined to find a fun, age-appropriate way to engage my two daughters in dialogue about the true meaning of the Christmas season, I began by createing a blown egg nativity scene.
Sometimes the human attempt to apply a name to the situation just fails...when in doubt, just call it FRED!
Raising chickens naturally means learning how to treat illness and injury using products with no potential side effects or danger if you eat the hens' eggs after treatment. Here are 8 essential items for any natural chicken keeper's first aid kit.
What you need to know about buying a puppy, their first 8 weeks of life and questions you should ask the breeder.
Learn a fun new use for office paper shreds!
Two lost birds far from their flocks: a different kind of Thanksgiving heart-warmer!
This chicken keeper is always learning lessons from her backyard flock. Today, they remind her of the true meaning of home.
My top 10 reasons to raise chickens!
An old windrow might look untidy, but it has real benefit for wildlife and stock. On a good day, nature will show its hand and give you a glimpse of the birds and animals that call it home.
Salmonella is contracted through uncooked or under-cooked poultry and eggs. Should you worry about YOUR flock transmitting the bacteria to your family?
An adventure in writing and chickens, including a rooster named Abraham Lincoln.
The loss of a pet is very upsetting, remembering the good times helps the healing process.
Learn how to exercise your dog and how exercise benefits his mental as well as physical health.
A fun post about making toys to keep your goats happy and playful!
One of these things is not like the other...or 3.
The Great Pyrenees is a great guardian for livestock. They don't have to be trained to do their job. They'll guard all kinds of livestock including ducks.
With iPhones in hand, visitors to national wildlife refuges in the Chesapeake Bay region can now photograph and share their sightings with a worldwide community of wildlife watchers.
Even the bees need a little bit of checking in on as they prepare for winter. Learn what this Cape Cod beekeeper plans for the winter and discovers in her hive on this final fall inspection.
As the weather gets colder, rodents start looking for a nice, warm, safe place to bed down for the winter. Don't make your chicken coop the place they choose because in addition to eating feed, they carry disease and can harm your flock.
This post is about the discovery of groundhog Nebraska Phil, continuing to mulch with neighborhood yard waste, planning the garden for next year, and a Happy Thanksgiving greeting.
I'll see your moose and raise you 10 chickens...a suggestion for rural communities and states experiencing too much of a good thing...
The Mini-Alpine is a smaller breed of dairy goat than its counterpart making it economical to have on the homestead.
From choosing the right horse breed to finding a reliable farrier, these Hank’s Hints for a new horse owner will set you on the right path to equine companionship.
Cochise and I make a daily adventure of hiking up and old mountain road. This little essay describes our special adventure today.
It may be YOUR attic for half the year: but come Winter, the Other Half(s)move in....
Sometimes a really good scrubbing is needed in the chicken coop, other times a quick cleaning and refresh is all it takes. Here's my quick and easy all natural coop cleaning method as well as a link to the Deep Litter Method to use over the winter.
Be prepared the next time you are ready to vacation. Here are some suggestions to help you identify the perfect chicken sitter for your flock and identify their responsibilities in your absence.
The doghouse chicken tractor is completed, and my chickens are dustbathing, eating scraps, and being chickens.
The greater prairie chicken was once a classic rural icon, but now its future is not so certain.
From the ancient auroch to modern cattle breeds, learn more about beautiful bovines.
Facing one of his greatest culinary challenges and dreams, Andy Sell takes on the incredibly difficult task of roasting a whole animal inside the ground. The tale of his full day experience is illustrated with step by step photos along the way.
Animal bones can offer clues to the species living in an area. Sometimes the bones can also tell us how the animal likely died. Look at bones as a mystery that you can solve.
Getting your goats ready for winter.
Our chickens love apples, so we always share a few from our horses' stash. Here are some easy, fun ways to make apple treats for your flock to help keep them from getting bored.
CAUTION: yellowjacket removal should NOT be considered a DIY project. Just buy the canned nest spray, follow directions, and DON'T GET TOO CREATIVE!
Fall is a busy time with harvesting, but you must also get ready for the wilds of winter. Between chores, the Niles family went to a hospital surplus auction to get recyclables for the farm.
Building a fence to carve a backyard out of 10 acres isnt' easy, but it sure is worth it.
Live Theater is alive and well and living all around the country. A very brief history of community theaters through the years in which this blogger was involved and his observations.
Mrs. D needs to put up a new enclosure, quickly and easily (without much muscle).
Chickens are more cold-hardy than you might think, but they will will appreciate anything you can do to make the winter more comfortable for them. Here are a few easy ideas to winterize your flock.
I started working with horses in 1968, and we always looked at what works best for horse stalls as the material composts. It can be a mess to choose what to use, and how to make it pay in compost, as bedding can be expensive.
This post is about Bradley's birthday, my experience with filming a Tough Grit TV episode, harvesting watermelons, living with groundhogs, and mulching the garden.
Wulf Cattle, hosted the first ever Calf Run event to kick off the fall feeder calf buying season showcasing the recently acquired feeder cattle management and backgrounding facilities at Wulf’s Cattle Depot and feedlot in McLaughlin, S.D.
Heating the chicken coop during the winter is controversial to say the least. Here are 10 ways to help keep your flock comfortable in freezing temperatures without ever turning on a heat lamp.
Crisp weather and brilliant colors usher in the harvest season.
Our family had the opportunity to butcher and process our first cow. Utilizing a sharp learning curve, we will be able to feed our family and another for quite a while.
Often individuals do not realize that wildlife exists in a delicate balance of protection and favorable environment. Rather than hunt, I choose to save just a little of that wildlife for my grandchildren.
When sickness hit the Sell household, Becky and Andy turned to tried and true herbal remedies, with a little help from the Internet and some alternative doctor friends. They also came up with a couple recipes that might work in your home as well!
Wondering what you can give your chickens as nice healthy treats over the winter when they can't get out to forage? Try sprouting some seeds or beans for them. It's easy and inexpensive....and a lot of fun!
Clinical studies show that raw pumpkin seeds can be helpful in worming your backyard chickens. Read on for the evidence and mechanism of action.
Kasey moves his Blue Splash Marans Chickens into a chicken tractor built from a doghouse.
Although some might consider laundry a mundane task, even this every-man's task can be sustainable, with the right mindset. Becky explains how her family arrived at that through necessity.
Sunshine Factor® is a non-synthetic, whole food source of nutrients, vitamins and vitamin precursors for everyday wellness in all animals.
Raw pumpkins seeds are thought to work as a natural internal wormer for chickens as well as ducks, goats and sheep. Why not use your leftover Halloween pumpkins and make some Pumpkin Soup for your flock?
So, you think you have only ONE deer on your property? Actually they're like rats: if you see one, you can bet there are 24 more in the shrubbery....
A heartwarming story of how a bully hen finds a forever home.
Build the right chicken houses for your flock this winter.
An irrigation ditch is an interesting place in autumn when most of the water has run down. It is more like a small stream that can be explored and enjoyed.
Joe Pye Weed provides gardeners late-season blooms and bees and butterflies with a late-season source of nectar.
Here we talk about a few of the most commonly heard myths these days in regards to barnyard critters. Do alpacas make good guardians? Can you keep turkeys with chickens? Are pigs dirty? Do alpacas spit? And many more!
Becky explains why she hasn't written for GRIT in awhile, as well as her newfound enthusiasm for homestead writing.
This post is about the yard cleanup after a long hot summer, hauling more hay for mulch at Terra Nova Gardens, putting up a pond fence, building a garden water tower, and tomato take over of the garden.
Enter the sweet world of Cheshire Farm Alpacas!
A daily walk with my dog helps me notice subtle seasonal changes.
This past weekend we went to the Isle of Wight County Fair. Come along with me and see the sights!
This post is about the free seeds and mulch that has been donated to Terra Nova Gardens. The plans for turning a spring into a pond and the development of a water source for Terra Nova Gardens are revealed.
Playful, fun-loving critters or malevolent sources of evil actions: everyone has an opinion on night-time Raccoon Activity in The Back 40...
This new beekeepers shares her experiences and discoveries of opening her hives late in the summer and prepares for Autumn.
The primary functions of litter (or bedding) in a chicken coop are to make floor cleaning easier and to control odors and moisture; SAND accomplishes all of those tasks and more!
Enjoy your best season yet with hunting tips from this guide to hunting deer, turkeys, dove, pheasant, geese and ducks.
Keeping a flock of backyard chickens will certainly provide you with eggs, but can chickens make good family pets? Here is what one backyard chickens keeper has to say.
Power Equipment Company hopes new infographic will encourage property owners to protect themselves and their pets from raccoon-related disease.
There's nothing more satisfying than trying to communicate with farm workers about animal issues. Yes, the common language seems to be English. No, the common denominator isn't necessarily the SAME English...
Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association (AOBA) invites you to visit their member farms and ranches on National Alpaca Farm Days on September 29th and 30th.
Wild gardens let gardeners experience nature up close and personal
For an easy weekend project, make this cute portable chicken nesting box out of a wooden half barrel in just a few minutes. A portable nesting box has many uses and your cost can be minimal if you repurpose materials you have lying around.
Oh, so you think the bird world doesn't wage war? Think again: OUR local hummingbirds employ the finer art of fencing!
DuPont® has launched a complete line of 4-oz specialty lubricants with Teflon® fluoropolymer for enhanced performance.
Basic hurricane preparations for backyard chickens.
Heritage breeds of chickens accompanied the pilgrims on the Mayflower. This week we visited Plimoth Plantation where they recreate and relive events of the 17th century.
The record-breaking heat and drought of 2012 compel us to listen to the urgent call of the land and to respond by the millions with immediate agrarian initiatives.
The high plains are home to a variety of bird species. Near the mountains waterfowl abound on the lakes and reservoirs. Some species like woodpeckers and hummingbirds are unexpected but welcome in any garden.
Late blooming flowers are a necessary food source for wildlife.
It's not the triumphs and monuments erected that are remembered. Sometimes it's what we have lost.
After severe summer storms, it was time to really ask ourselves how prepared our family was. This is the first post in Practical Preparedness where we'll share tips, simple ideas, and easy how-to's for keeping families prepared.
New micro herd of Jersy dairy cows in Hampshire, England with all the milk to be processed on-farm and sold immediately to local customers. We hope to encouage the community to buy cows for us to look after.
Moving your flock to a new coop can disrupt their routine and confuse them about where they should be laying their eggs. A few plastic Easter eggs quickly clears up the confusion.
Our farm's YouTube debut.
Questions to consider in light of the recent news that a rancher, unable to afford corn feed, is feeding candy to his cows.
Much confusion surrounds the differences between Araucanas, Ameraucanas and Easter Eggers. Learn a few of the differences between these chickens and why there is no I in Ameraucana.
Five striking heritage breeds of livestock such as the Belted Galloway, Nigerian Dwarf goat, Clydesdale horse and more for your small farm.
Snakes are startling but they are also fascinating. If you spy a snake, be sure you are at a safe distance and identify it. Many times it will be a harmless type that can be studied or if you are inclined, handled.
Backyard chickens can produce plenty of eggs. Learn how to store, clean, package and sell the eggs from your backyard flock.
The transition between summer and autumn is my favorite time of year.
This blog entry is about digging out a natural spring to use as a water source for garden watering; thoughts about gorilla gardening; and building a gate for the fenced in garden area.
Accidents happen and around a farm where bacteria and germs abound, having an antiseptic ointment on hand is necessary. Here is an easy recipe for a homemade ointment that is all natural.
He's a 5th generation farmer. He raises hogs outdoors without hormones or antibiotics. His incredible animals have the power to turn vegetable into bacon. Meet Matt Beach!
Which treats can chickes eat and which should be avoided? Feeding our backyard pets the wrong treats or too many treats can be harmful to their health, stunt growth, shorten their lifespans & interfere with egg production. Don't love them to death.
Osiris is the original baad sheep - and provides much fodder for discussion on the controversy surrounding Sheep Intelligence. Case rested here!
A collection of goodies to spice up your Monday.
Talk of grain crops and what's been going on at the dairy farm.
The one downside to fresh eggs is how hard they are to peel. To me, setting some aside and waiting until they get old in order to be able to hard boil them seems counterproductive, so I was determined to find a way get perfectly peeled fresh eggs.
Our national 'undertaker', the Vulture, CAN serve as a stand-in when our National Bird gets tired and wants a vacation.
Being able to identify each variety of mites or lice that can potentially plague chickens is not as important as being able to detect an infestation and treat it effectively- the health of your flock and their egg production depend on it.
It's not always sunshine and roses. Homesteading has its ups and downs, you just have to make the most of them, learn, and move forward. We are experiencing an abundance of eggs, a skunk invasion, and the loss of a hen.
Time spent fishing is time well spent.
I normally crush up our eggshells and feed them free-choice to our chickens as an economical way to provide them the extra calcium they need to lay eggs with nice hard shells. But there are other practical uses for eggshells. Here are nine of them.
This post is about the activity st Terra Nova Gardens and all the involvement through work or donations to the gardens.
With just a short drive in the country, you too can 'own' ALL the animals you want! Even a pony...
Drought and heat can get a gardener or farmer down, but it can also give us what it takes to survive - a good old fashioned case of Kansas stubborn.
Whether you have an injured chicken, new chickens to introduce to the flock, or a hen brooding chicks, this chicken safe place fits directly in your coop. It can be built in about 30 minutes and is removable when not in use.
Include plants in your landscape that provide seeds and berries to hungry wildlife.
Make mozzarella cheese in approximately 30 minutes with this DIY tutorial.DIY instructions include photos every step of the way. Use fresh, raw milk for unrivaled results. Simple, fun and delicious!
When my husband said he wanted a horse, I told him he was nuts. Now that he has a horse, I've finally figured out what the purpose of a horse is.
Basic biosecurity measures are important to protect the health of your chickens. Biosecurity is a routine of run hygiene to keep your chickens safe from disease, which spreads easily from infected flocks, but it's fairly easy to reduce the risk.
Country living: it's all about the fresh country air. Or, is it?
Molting is the loss of feathers and their subsequent re-growth. See what it looks like and learn how to help chickens get through it a little more easily.
Render lard and revisit the virtues of your grandmother’s secret ingredient.
Summertime is filled with fun & adventure...but it's also a time of strong storms and possible damage. How prepared are we and what can we do to be better prepared?
She was my favorite hen...and then she crowed.
Heat and drought proved to be an interesting combination on the Niles farm.
Nuts and tree sap are important food sources for local wildlife.
What can one do with 2.5 acres of land? Why, the possibilities are ENDLESS...
Take the time every few weeks to do a complete comb to toe check up of each of your chickens to prevent serious health issues from compounding. If you spend enough time with them on a regular basis, you will know what is normal and what is not.
A short story about how we helped save a turtle from a cat.
Egg binding is a serious condition in which an egg gets stuck inside the hen just prior to release. It can be life threatening, which is why every backyard chicken-keeper should know how to detect, prevent and treat if necessary.
Learn how to trim your chicken's toenails in this simple tutorial.
Chicken Spraddle Leg or Splayed Leg, is a leg deformity in chickens that can be permanent if not corrected. Causes, prevention and treatment of spraddle leg and curled or crooked toes is simple and effective when intervention occurs early.
Like mites, chickens can be affected by poultry lice. This post gives you all the information you need to prevent, identify and treat your entire flock including natural alternatives and techniques.
Molting is the process that chickens (and other birds) go through to replace old, broken and dirty feathers with new healthy ones. Help your flock get the added protein they need during this period by baking them up a loaf of Molt Meatloaf.
This blog explains the anchoring of a picnic table in the bad part of town, shows how well a new garden is doing, and expresses the joy over the first tomato harvested.
When a friend mentioned he had time to waste, it got me thinking about priorities. I want my life to count! Living a purposeful rural life is extremely rewarding--and it's time well spent.
As usual things, something is always going on. The pigs and chickens got there outside runs, hay season is in full swing, and the girls finally got to pull their tractors.