This year has been a lot better than the years past. We have had a decent size lamb crop in both Market and Babydolls. Our girls will be able to show both breeds this year and will also be competing against our stock.
We have done an awesome job with the rabbits and come a long way. We went from just having English lops to specializing in Sable and Blues. Love seeing those long eared babies in the nest boxes. We plan to start back showing English lops in full force by next year. Our Tans are doing great on the show tables including a Best In Show and numerous Best of Breeds! Gracie’s Dutch that she has bred and raised are also winning Best of Breeds on the table. We have even been able to help out several youth get started in showing.
We have had a few goslings, chicks, and quail hatched out and have decided that we need to have a thin down on several livestock.
Belgian Draft Mare – $3500
Palomino Quarter Horse Gelding – $2500
Sebastopol Geese Flock – $600 – consider trades
Hampshire Pig Herd – 3 – $1000 or trade for sheep/cows
Did you know that you DON’T have to have a pedigree when you show a rabbit??
I get so mad when I hear someone say they were told they were not allowed to show a rabbit unless it has a pedigree. So I want to break this down some for you.
You CAN show a rabbit without a pedigree – in fact they don’t even look or ask for a pedigree.
You DO however want a rabbit that is the closest representative of the breed as possible.
You CAN start your own pedigree.
Just because a rabbit has a pedigree DOES NOT mean it is showable.
I have seen some extremely nice rabbits that didn’t have pedigrees for one reason or another. Matter of fact we ended up with some really nice dutch but no pedigrees. So what did we do? Started showing them and making our own pedigrees. Yes, it will take a few generations in order to get a full pedigree but that is ok and we can still show in the meantime. Our youngest daughter showed a couple of weeks ago with a Dutch that has no pedigree and won out of 7 other rabbits.
Again – just because a rabbit has a pedigree doesn’t mean that it is showable! There are a lot that goes into it. You need to research the breed and then you need to talk to reputable breeders. Find out all the dos and don’ts of that breed.
If you decide that the breed is something you want to raise and show then start your own pedigrees. We actually use Evans software to help us keep up with all info on rabbits and print pedigrees.
We prefer getting rabbits with pedigrees because it shows the breeder took the time to keep all information updated. However, if it is a quality rabbit then we won’t let a lack of pedigree stop us.
Wow! It’s hard to believe that we are already flying through February. We have all currently been fighting the flu but so thankful that maybe we can get all sickness over and done with before we start our lambing season. The ewes are getting bigger and bagging up. After last year’s rough lambing year we are hoping for a reprieve this year.
We did get a surprise batch of puppies out of our rescue LGD, not sure what she managed to get bred by but she had 4 big healthy pups. Two girls and two boys, of which we plan to keep both females to add to our LGD pack. We was shocked she had puppies because she is so old we didn’t think she was able too.
We have also cranked the incubators back up. Currently have test eggs which consist of Sebbie geese eggs, snowflake quail and butler quail. We have decided that if our Cornish chickens don’t start laying within the next month then they are all going to freezer camp. Sometimes you have to step back and decide which benefit you and the farm and not just a money pit and lost cause.
So as we prepare to head to our first rabbit show of the year 2018 this year we are also having to consider thinning the herd down. Hope everyone has a great rest of FEB.
It feels like winter outside and frozen water tubs prove it. This is the time of year that farming and keeping livestock sucks. You have to make sure everyone handles the freezing temps and that they have access to fresh water all day. Not a lot of fun trying to handle cold water with numb fingers. This is when we fantasize about Spring and pray that it shows up quickly. I know that since we are in Arkansas we don’t have to deal with extreme snow falls and blizzards. I thank God for that and pray for those that do, I honestly can’t imagine raising livestock and dealing with that type of harsh environment.
Out of the animals here on the farm, most handle it without any issues, in fact our Chows and LGDs love the cooler temps. Our youngest daughter has a small three pound chihuahua and when I set her outside the other morning she immediately turned around and said to heck with this. I think that is the fastest she has ever done her business. She doesn’t even mind the sweaters our youngest places on her so I guess she knows they help.
We having been working on our bull pasture and extending a couple of pig pens, got a lot done yesterday and a lot closer to finishing. Now we are prepping for the arrival of lambs over the next couple of months. Praying for a great lamb crop as last year’s wasn’t so great. That is the part of raising livestock that no one likes. Losses….. Last year we had issues with aborting and even lost a couple of older ewes to unknown reasons. We have done our best this year getting our ewes prepped for lambing including vaccination to help prevent abortions.
Time will tell.
Hope everyone is surviving the winter and looking forward to Spring and the babies it brings.
These picture was taken over a decade ago but always brings a smile to my face. These two were a mess. The little doe named Zoey taught me a lot about deer.
Did you know they will play in water puddles like kids? They also make a variety of noises. Zoey would follow me all over the farm and if I was working on something then she was like a dog: getting into everything. She would even carry stuff around in her mouth.
A lot of people could and would learn from animals if they just took the time to observe them.
It’s a new year and that means another year survived. Now to make this year even better than before. Lots of plans but that means a lot of work but it will never happen if we don’t start somewhere. We can dream all day long but until we start putting the wheels in motion we can’t get any closer to our dreams.
I challenge each of you to think of your dream and the steps you will need to take to get there. We can only regret the steps we didn’t take to get closer to our dreams. Just think if we had started working on our dream with more dedication years ago then we might have been where we want to be now. Believe in yourself and your dream!
I have discovered podcasts recently and let me tell you – some of those are very motivating. So I am going to take some of their suggestions and start stepping out on those stepping stones!Good luck to all of us! May our dreams one day become a reality!
Well we didn’t get off to a very good start with our babydolls this year. It has been one of those rough farming years. Seems like if it could go wrong then it did, but we won’t let that stop us and have bigger and better plans for next year!
Our youngest has decided to start her own pig farm – guinea pigs that is!!! She takes in rescue and unwanted pigs. She also has plans to start showing them.
We have also started experiencing the wonderful world of essential oils! Oh My!! I wish we had of started them sooner! If you want to know what I’m talking about or want to join in then contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We use DoTerra oils.
Hard to believe it is already the second month in the new year!!!
We are so excited about 2017 as we have a lot going on and planned for. We will start lambing around March and can’t wait for those little lambs to hit the ground running.
Our girls are getting geared up for the new show season and just waiting on lambs to get here so they can officially start planning shows.
We have also added a new partner to our Rabbitry so that we can offer a bigger variety of rabbits. We specialize in rare breed show bunnies. Currently we have Holland Lops, Thriantas, Tans, Czech Frosty, Dwarf Hotots and English Lops.
Sorry that I dropped the ball on you! We are once again getting ready for fair. We have had a lot happen this year and still not done!
The kids showed this spring and summer and done a great job!
We will have our county fair week after next and plan to show sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, and geese. Then we will be headed to District fair and have a small break then off to State. Wish them luck!
We plan on adding several babydoll ewes to the herd. The market ewes are off at the breeders now. Hoping to have quite a few baby lambs around the first of the year.
Hopefully I can start making a habit of posting here again.
Well I made my first attempt at pickling quail eggs a couple of months ago and we finally decided to open a jar and check them out.
The overall vote at 100% was they were delicious! They were on the sweet side so next time I will add in a jalapeno. I had never even tried any pickled eggs in the past and for sure never canned them, so I was very happy with outcome. We had to do something with all the extra quail eggs that we have around here.