New creatures

October 9, 2009

Interesting new creatures have joined our farm this month. BantamchickThe kids are raising bantam (small) chickens for4-H.  To make room, we  relocated our laying hens to the second room in the chicken house. (V.’s grandma once supplied the local grocery story with eggs, so we have a good-sized chicken house.)  We bought the chicks at the local farm store, so we’re not yet sure of the breeds.  At eight weeks old, they are just starting to show their true character, feathered feet and all.

We have also welcomed several very handsome bottle calves — Milking Shorthorn/Holstein crosses. That brings us to seven bottle calves now — each drinking a gallon of milk, morning and night. The dairy farmer from whom we buy our calves — a huge, happy man who has sired 16 children — is  moving to a more sustainable approach. That means more pasture, so less grain for his herd. Milking Shorthorns are an older breed that do well on pasture. The coloring of these calves combine the mottled patterns of Shorthorns with the patching common to Holsteins.

MilkingshorthorncalfWe’re hoping for lambs and kids early next year, so D. and E. (us, too) will be plenty busy. D. is just starting his sheep herd, with one Hamp/Suffolk cross. We have three female Nubian goats now and hope to add a Billy soon.

Never a dull moment…


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