Homesteading and Survivalism

Living a simple life

Month: August 2013

May Have Lost My First Chicken

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One of my best hens is missing, and I think some feral cats are to blame. I have not seen the missing hen in about 4 or 5 days. She might be broody and sitting on some eggs. But I suspect she has been killed and eaten.

After my wife and I got moved to the farm we made it about a month before one of our chickens came up missing. The hen I am referring to is a Speckled Sussex.

She had a friendly nature and liked to explore new areas. If I had to pick one hen out of my entire flock to model after, it would have been her.

Here is a picture of nugget, my prized Speckled Sussex.

Speckled Sussex chicken

Freedom of speech in private places

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This council woman in San Antonio made some comments in a private area, to a select few people. Someone recorded the comments, then the comments were released to the news media.

There were some protest, and she has been asked to resign her position.

Then there are the Paula Deen comments about black people.

Why do certain groups feel the need to protest, or get angry, when it comes out what someone said in privacy.

If we are not free to express ourselves in private areas, or to friends, then where can we express ourselves at?

I feel that rather than supporting our rights, special interest groups are acting like a form of thought police. It no longer matters where you say something, or think something, or believe something. If the wrong people find out your beliefs, they are going to try and embarrass you.

It seems to me that only certain groups are allowed to protest.

Regardless if we agree or disagree with what is said, we should at least support the persons right to speak in privacy.

A mans home is his castle.  If I can not speak frankly and honestly in my castle, then freedom of speech is dead.

Calories After TEOTWAWKI

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Something to think about, Potatoes produce around 9 million calories per acre.

Corn produces around 7.5 million calories per acre.  If we want to store corn in bulk, we can stockpile canned corn or store dried corn in mylar bags.  A 14.75 ounce can of cream style sweet corn has 60 calories, a 15.25 ounce can of whole kernel corn has 60 calories – at least that is what the labels say on the cans of corn.

Rice comes in third with an estimated 7.4 million calories per acre.  Rice is also a popular item to store in mylar bags.  If we wanted to break it down to the details, a cup of rice contains about 216 calories.

Soybean 4th with around 2.8 million calories per acre. However, soybean leads the pack of all four in protein production per acre.

Source: Foods & Nutrition Encyclopedia, Volume 1

With a daily intake of 2,000 calories a person will consume 730,000 calories per year.

2,000 calories per day X 365 days in a year = 730,000 calories.

3,000 calories per day = 1,095,000 calories per year.

Lets just say 1,000,000 calories per person over the course of a year.

For a family of 4, a 1 acre plot of land planted with corn could possibly provide all of the calories needed by that family over the course of a year.  But who wants eat corn everyday for a year?

There is a lot of discussion in the survivalist community about getting enough calories after SHTF.  If all we wanted to focus on was calories then lets grow nothing but potatoes and corn.  Hell yea, lets just stockpile canned corn and canned potatoes by the truckload.  But there is this little thing called “nutrition” and “food fatigue.”

If we focus on growing the right crops after SHTF / TEOTWAWKI, calories should not be a problem.

Clown Who Wore an Obama Mask

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For those of you who have been sleeping under a rock may not know, a clown in the Missouri State Fair wore an Obama mask during the performance.

Here is the funny part, people are actually upset about it. The Missouri chapter of the NAACP has called for a federal investigation into a rodeo clown.

What good is our right to political speech if we do not use it?  If mocking the president is not protected speech, then what is?

I personally applaud the clown.  not only do I applaud him, I wish more people would mock our elected officials.

Our ability to speak out against the government is one thing that sets us apart from the rest of the world.  If this had happened in China, the clown would probably be in prison.

The founding fathers of this great nation wanted to make sure we could mock the government.

A single clown has drawn more attention then 10,000 protestors in Washington D.C.

If the clown had wore a Bush, Regan, or Nixon mask, nobody would have cared.

Things Moving Along Nicely

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Things are moving along nicely as my wife and I settle into our new life in rural southeast Texas.

Power has been hooked up to the house.

Deck has been moved to the house.  Now its just a matter of leveling the deck.

Air conditioner is supposed to be hooked up today (August 15, 2013).

Hopefully I will be able to buy a 1,000 gallon septic tank and 100 feet of field line in the next couple of days.

During the weekend of August 23, 24 and 25 I have some help coming over with equipment to put the septic tank and field line down.

After the septic tank is installed hopefully my wife and I can get moved into our house.


Got Power Hooked Up To The House

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The power company was out here a couple of days ago to set the power poles.

Today, August 10, 2013 we got the power hooked up to the house.  It might sound like a baby step and not worthy of posting about on a blog.  But I feel different.    Getting the power installed where there has never been power before is a big step.

Tomorrow,  August 11, 2013 I am going to run the power wires from the main breaker box on the pole to the AC unit.  I am also going to install some plumbing lines so we can get the septic tank installed.

When my wife and I m0ved we brought a 10X8 shed with us.  I need to repair some tin on the roof that was damaged during the move, then build a lean-to on the side for storing the tiller and lawn mower.

Things I need to get done:

Power to the house – check
Power to AC – working on it
Fix septic line
Get septic system installed – in the next couple of weeks
Get water run to the house

If you have any questions about the move post them in the comments section below.

First Observations On Free Ranging Chickens

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Are you raising chickens as part of you long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI survival plan? If so, have you put much thought into how well your chickens are able to forage, and what type of land is available to the chickens?

During a collapse of society it will be critical for livestock to forage.

How do we know what chicken breeds are good at foraging and which ones should be avoided? I hope to do a series of articles on how well different chicken breeds cope with free ranging.

My wife and I recently moved to a rural area of southeast Texas. One of the first things we did after the move was let the chickens out to free range. The area directly behind the chicken yard is around 1 acre of cleared land, and then another 2 acres of timber.

When the 13 hens were being fed commercial laying pellets my wife and I were getting 8 – 12 eggs a day. Some of the hens are molting, so that may contribute to the fluctuation in laying patterns. We are also in the hottest part of the year with daytime temps reaching 100 degrees here in southeast Texas.


Trying To Get Moved In August

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My wife and I probably picked the worst month to move, and that is the first week of August.

August in Texas needs to be renamed “Hell” – June, July, Hell, September, October,,,,,. The combination of 100 degree heat, with high humidity, makes preforming any outside activity and experience in misery.

My wife and I moved to the farm we had our shed moved with us. During the move the back wall suffered some kind of wind damage and now needs to be replaced. The exterior wall is made out of some kind of wall board that looks like plywood, but is not plywood.

While the shed was being moved a brace between the skids also broke. Before the shed can be moved to the back of a field the brace has to be replaced, and I want to replace the exterior wall with sections of tin. I have the tin, it is just a matter of dealing with the heat to remove the damaged exterior wall and then put the tin on the building.

A couple of days ago my son and I measured off a section of land that equaled 5 acres. I would like to clear the old fence rows so the field can be fenced in again for some cattle during summer 2014.

It is probably going to be around 2 weeks before power is ran to the house. To cool the house so we can get some work done my wife and I hooked up a window AC unit and fan to the generator. It helped a little bit, but the house was still too hot to work in. We got a few boxes unpacked and the couch moved into place, and that was about it.

If we had power to the house things would not be near as bad.

The chickens are adjusting well to free range. With each passing day they venture further and further away from the chicken house.

The chickens and rabbits have been drinking creek water for 3 weeks. No ill effects have been observed during the transition from city water to untreated creek water.

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