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Preparing the Farm for Winter

| 11/15/2010 1:35:00 PM

Samantha BiggersIts always pretty busy on a farm. In the fall there is the rush to prepare for winter. For us it means butchering the last of the broiler chickens, fattening up the pastured pigs, building or repairing any animal shelters, finishing up canning, and trying to get the most out of what remains of the pasture.

This week we were given a round roll hay feeder. Nothing fancy but it still has a few years left in it. We had a roll or two of hay that were laying on their sides got rained on so we decided to feed it to the cows, goats, and sheep before it ruined. This will allow our field to grow up a bit before we have a killing frost so the cows will be able to have more green stuff further into the winter.

Our very pregnant Dexter cow, Bessie was very happy to have all the hay she could eat. She stuck her chin out a bit and had the most content look on her face that we had to smile. Hopefully she will give us a Dexter heifer to add to the herd the first week of January. We are really excited because it will be the first Dexter calf born on the farm. Her daughter is also expecting a calf in March.

We wanted to dehorn our Dexter bull by putting bands on his horns (the same bands that one uses to bloodlessly castrate) but we had waited too long and the bands just popped off so we have decided to just put brass horn knobs on him and just let him keep his horns. He is a big Mamma's boy anyway. Next breeding season we will let him breed one of the cows. Neither calf that will be born this year is his. He will be a year old this January.

Jeb the Great Pyrenees has been enjoying the cooler weather.

Jeb posing on a pretty Fall day.  

Nebraska Dave
11/16/2010 4:47:56 AM

@ Samantha, fall on the farm is always a busy time. I haven’t been around farm life for many decades but I can remember those days with fond memories. It’s good to know that some folks are still experiencing the life that really formed who I am today. It’s a great way to start out life. For me many life growing experiences both good and bad came from the days of farm life. I never had much love for chickens either until they ended up on the table for a Sunday fried chicken dinner. I suppose it was my job was to clean out the coop after the chickens were processed. In Nebraska the chicks arrived during the spring time so cleaning the coop was in the very hot month of July. If you have ever cleaned out a chicken coop when it’s hot you will understand my dread of the task. Mom always processed the chickens herself and I was only involved with the catching of the live chickens. She did the rest. It was an ugly task that wasn’t one of my favorites. That’s one of those life learning experiences. Sometimes in life you just have to do what has to be done. It’s not about whether you like it or not. Have a great fall day.

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