Shifting Gears On The Farm

Working field with tractor and tiller
Working field with tractor and tiller

As hunting season winds down, it is time to shift gears and start working on the farm.  During November and early December I try not to make too much noise.  This means no chainsaws and no tractor.  Why?  Because people on the hunting leases next to the farm are sitting in their stands.  My dogs roam those hunting leases, and I would like for the people to not shoot my dogs.

So after hunting season ends, it will be time to start working on fencing in a few acres on the back of the property.  A rough estimate is around 7 – 9 acres that will be fenced in.

What kind of livestock will be kept?

I would like to get some goats, hair sheep and a few calves.  The calves are to be raised and sold at auction.  There is not enough land to raise full grown cattle, so I am looking at a calves.  For milk it will be goats and sheep.

As some of you may know, I am using the middle ages as a guide to develop a self-sustainable farm.  People in the middle ages valued small livestock over large livestock.  This was due to grazing, and how much meat was wasted when the animal was butchered.  With no real way to preserve meat, when a cow was butchered, hundreds of pounds would go to waste.  When a goat or small pig was butchered, little meat went to waste.

In the middle ages, a cows main purpose was milk production, which was made into cheese.  Then there is the feed to milk production ratio. A cow needs grass, and lots of it.  Goats on the other hand eat less and do well on weeds.

In early 2017 I was working on the back field, but got side tracked.  A lot of progress was made, so all I have to do is keep working on what I have already done.  Waiting until winter helps me see through the brush and get an idea of what needs to be done.

Sometime around the end of December or the first of January I am going to start back on the field.  I can probably brush hog an area and set some fence post.  There are just a few trees that need to be cut down, and none of them are “that” large.

The plan is to use culled telephone poles for corner post, and field fence.

My husqvarna chainsaw was acting up. I may put it in the shop before the work begins.

The overall plan is to have a pole barn, several head of goats and sheep, and calves that are being raised for auction.