Sunday, January 10, 2010

Winter on the Farm

Lets try this again.

As everyone can probably guess, there is not much going on around here except trying to keep everyone warm. I have to confess when Billy is home, he does the most of it. Every morning he gets up and heads out to the barn to carry water from the corner of the barn to where ALMOST everyone is contained inside when it is this cold. I say everyone because the ducks and geese prefer to stay outside and out from under the sheep hooves. They have a lean-to shelter which half the time, they choose not to use. Considering we have 10 adults -9 of which are pregnant and 8 older lambs from this past season, 11 ducks, 2 geese, 30 chickens and 4 guineas, this amounts to A- LOT of water everyday to be carried. Of course this doesn't include the 4 dogs and 4 cats, but they are on the porch or in the house and that's much easier. Believe it or not, the hens are laying after failing us most of the summer. We are getting between 4 and 11 eggs a day depending on how cold it was the day before.
The ducks should start laying in a couple of weeks and we will have to start watching out for eggs on the tundra as they just drop them anywhere until they are ready to start building nests. After this happens we will begin to start marketing them and products from baked goods using those eggs. This will be the finish of the year long experiment for the Cayuga duck portion of the grant we received from Slowfoods St. Louis. As most of you remember, the grant was given to help this small farmer to provide a new product to the market using a heirloom plant or endangered animal in order to foster their survival. The other portion was to use Heirloom plum tomatoes to dry and sell at the market. We were given the opportunity to improve our greenhouse to dry them in. The greenhouse was improved as the blog showed throughout the season but the drying of the tomatoes failed dismally due to all the rain and cool weather we received all season.
That's about it for right now and we will see everyone at Schlafly Microbrewery in a couple of weeks. Sorry there are no pics right now as the camera bit the dust. We will have to change that soon as all the girls in the barn are bagging and I expect some lambies in a couple of weeks.

TTFN as Tigger would say.

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