Saturday, January 30, 2010
This pretty much says it all. Plans for today include packaging soap and getting caught up on my goat registration paperwork for all my new Nigerian Dwarf kids. I'm still recovering from tattooing 27 Nigerian Dwarf kids and disbudding 7 of them last Thursday afternoon. There is still some green ink on my hands. My smallest Nigerian Dwarf kid, Abbey, who weighed two pounds at birth, had gained up to 2-1/2 pounds on Thursday. She was purchased by Bartman Farm in Sanford, NC and is being raised as a bottle baby. She had her picture on Facebook this morning and looks very happy!
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Today was an "off" day. Too muddy to do any outside work with the animals. This time of year, they like to hang out in the barn all day. They don't even like to be outside when it is wet and windy! Tomorrow we hope to put out a few round bales of hay to last through the weekend. More rain and maybe some snow is predicted so I want to be prepared. We've been putting off moving hay since it is so muddy. We don't like to drive the tractor in the pasture any more than necessary because it makes such huge ruts. Some of the goats have been getting square bales to eat waiting for Sunday's rain to dry up. They love the square bales because it is a better quality of hay than they normally get. They are in hog heaven. We moved our chicken tractor further up the hill on drier ground. With all the rain we've been getting, it was mired up in mud and didn't want to roll. It took two of us to push it. Hopefully, it can stay where the ground drains better for a while. Have been receiving several calls about bunnies this week. What makes people think of rabbits in January? Mine are finally all bred and we will have lots of bunnies ready for Easter. Looking forward to doing disbudding and tattooing tomorrow (I lied.). Not two of my favorite jobs, but they have to be done. The disbudding is not too bad; but, when you tattoo, ink gets everywhere. You can't wear anything that you don't want permanent green ink on and you need to wear latex gloves to keep it off of your hands.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Sunday of this week and early Monday morning was a washout! We received over 2 inches of rain and water is still standing even with the brisk winds that we have had for two days to dry some of it up. I spent some of the morning chasing down wind socks, bird houses, etc. that blew down. Buffalo Creek washed out quite well and a huge log jam that we had is gone - - finally. This is the same log jam that we worked on Saturday to help it move on down the creek. However, we did manage to loose some of our banks in the goat and Zebu pastures due to erosion. As soon as it dries up some, we will have to move some of our woven wire fencing to get it on solid ground. That will be a job for sure. This morning, we cleaned out some of the rabbit hutches and did what little work we could do while trying to stay dry. We'll probably do some more wood cutting too this afternoon. All the Nigerian Dwarf kids that were were born last Thursday night are doing well. They will be disbudded and tagged on Thursday of this week. I have a friend coming from Sanford to help. She wants to learn how to disbud in preparation for her kids that will be born in March. One of the quints that was born last Thursday only weighed two pounds. She is doing well. She nurses on her mom while I supplement her with milk three times a day. She is the smallest kid that I have ever had that survived. The closest to her in weight is Tabitha, who weighed 2-1/4 pounds at birth. Tabitha has been bred to Zeus and will be kidding in March. She is still a small doe and looks almost identical to her mom.
Monday, January 25, 2010
The 4th annual Agritourism Networking Association Winter Conference will be held February 18 and 19, 2010 at the City Hotel and Bistro in Greenville, NC. A reception is to be held on the 18th with seven workshops on February 19. Workshops will include "Planning for Success", "Grassroots Gumption: Persuasion and Public Policy", and "Agritourism Farms - What Flies and Flops". For more information go to the ANA website or call Martha Glass at 919.733.7887 Ext. 276.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
The Carolina Alpaca Breeders and Owners organization presents the Carolina Alpaca Celebration, February 13th and 14th, 2010 at the Cabarrus Arena & Events Center, 4751 NC Hwy 49 North, Concord, NC. Quality Llama Products, Inc. will deliver to this show any of the products that they carry in their catalogue. This is a good opportunity of those of you who use llamas for livestock guardians, show or enjoy them as pets to pick up halters, leads, etc. without paying shipping charges while also enjoying the alpacas on display. Quality Llama Products also carry a full line of llama/alpaca/goat jewelry, signs, stamps, etc.
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Get some helpful hints to possibly improve the bottom line. Also included, guest speaker, Daniel Easter of Easter Fencing to discuss fencing options on the farm. Meal will be dutch. January 25th, 2010 @ 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM Dukes Restaurant 1075 N. Main St Walnut Cove, NC 27052 Contact Amy Thomas at (336) 593-8179
Friday, January 22, 2010
If you like goats, check out All Things Goat which was created by Naimhe Jeanne (Nee-Vah Jeen) and Martha Ann, carnivores both who believe in the humane treatment of goats whether they are pets or raised for milk, meat or fiber. Through news, profiles, recipes and editorials, All Things Goat illustrates how our caprine friends improve the quality of life for many worldwide.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Today proved to a messy, rainy day with temperatures in the 30's. Quite a change from the 50's and 60's that we enjoyed the first of the week. No outside work today! This morning it was time to give CDT and pneumonia vaccinations to the new kids. I gave 24 kids two vaccinations each and disbudded a few too. I also did some deworming on 4 adult goats, trimmed one set of hooves and put collars with tattoo numbers on them on some of the latest kids. It was nice and cozy inside the barn out of the weather. A good day to get this job done. Just as I predicted, "Chunky Monkey", one of my Nigerian does and Ebony, another Nigerian, decided to kid this evening in the cold, rainy weather. Ebony delivered quints on her own. One of the little does was stillborn leaving me with 3 bucks and 1 doe kid. A couple of them look like their dad, Dude. Ebony is a small black doe and you would have never suspected that she had 5 kids inside of her. As I'm blogging, "Chunky Monkey" is in labor. She's pawing at the ground, "talking" and trying her best to get to Ebony's kids. She thinks they are hers. Hopefully, it will not be much longer and she'll have her own.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
A farmer was milking her goat.
She was just starting to get a good rhythm going when a bug flew
into the milking parlor and started circling her head.
Suddenly, the bug flew into the goat's ear.
The farmer didn't think much about it,
until the bug squirted out into her bucket.
It went in one ear and out the udder.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Today was beautiful and we took full advantage of the sunshine by working outdoors. We're still cutting and splitting wood. So far, we have cut and split 70 logs and we still have a lot to do. We'll do another 20 logs Tuesday and Wednesday while the weather is nice. The goats sure enjoyed the sunshine today. Everyone was lying in the sun taking full advantage of it too. There is a lot of mud and wet ground from the rain that we had on Saturday night in our bottom but they find higher, dryer ground to lounge around on. Still waiting on some Nigerian Dwarf goats to kid. Of course, they wouldn't kid today while the weather was so nice. I suppose they are waiting for the rain to come in on Thursday of this week. That's the way goats are. They will hold their babies in until the weather is terrible. I've got triplet Nigerian Dwarf doe bottle babies that are growing and doing well. Their mom, Annie, has an udder problem so they nurse from one side of her udder while I supplement them twice a day with a bottle. I believe she could raise all three on one side but I just feel better helping her out some. Had some Flemish Giant rabbits picked up today along with one Nigerian Dwarf kid. It seems as though everyone was out and about in this nice weather. Oh, I almost forgot. I bred rabbits today to have Easter bunnies. I already have requests for certain colors of lionhead and mini-rex bunnies. Tomorrow will be more rabbit breeding. I'll have all of my pet rabbits bred by tomorrow and will have to continue breeding the Tennessee Redback rabbits for about one week. I have approximately 23 Tennessee Redback does so it takes time for the two bucks to make their rounds.
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Does pruning puzzle you? NC Cooperative Extension invites the public to a demonstration of how to prune apple and peach trees, muscadine grape vines, and blueberry bushes.
The event is scheduled for Saturday, January 23, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Hill’s Orchard and Vineyard (3452 Marvin Hill Place, Trinity).
Dr. Mike Parker of North Carolina State University and NC Cooperative Extension Agent Mary Helen Ferguson will give the demonstrations. Snacks will be provided.
Please call 336-318-6000 to pre-register so that we can inform you if plans change due to weather. For accommodations for persons with disabilities or limited English proficiency, contact Mary Helen Ferguson at 336-318-6000 (phone), 336-318-6011 (FAX), firstname.lastname@example.org, or in person, no later than five business days before the event.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
The North Carolina Forage and Grassland Council has scheduled its Mid Winter Conference series for later in January. The meeting dates are January 19, 2010 in Nashville, N.C., January 20, 2010 in Monroe, N.C., and January 21, 2010 in Fletcher, N.C. At the conferences local pasture managers will discuss their operations and experiences. In addition, the keynote speaker will be Dr. Fred Provenza. Dr. Provenza is based at Utah State University. He is an international expert on animal behavior and forage choices. He is a world authority on understanding the behavior of grazing livestock; how they interact with their environment and the implications for management. This will be a great learning opportunity no matter what livestock you are interested in. You can attend the conference closest to you. To make sure you have a meal, please preregister with the NC Forage and Grasslands Council at 2228 N. Main St., Fuguay Varina, N.C. 27526. Phone: (919)-552-9111 Fax: (919)-552-9216 Email: email@example.com
Friday, January 15, 2010
NC Choices presents the 1st annual Carolina Meat Conference sponsored by Weaver Street Market and Cabarrus County Bringing together independent meat producers, processors, buyers and allied professionals for a weekend of workshops, trainings, panel discussions and networking to strengthen marketing and processing opportunities for the region’s rapidly growing local meat industry. March 25‐27, 2011 at the Cabarrus Arena and Event Center in Concord, North Carolina • Explore how production and processing practices impact meat quality and marketability including beef, pork, poultry, lamb and goat. • Engage in hands‐on training to improve carcass utilization, learn artisanal butchery techniques, and develop value‐added products. • Learn about innovative marketing alliances that are expanding the supply of local meat, and • Discuss emerging trends and issues, including regulatory compliance, food safety, mobile slaughter, pasture management, animal welfare, marketing claims, production standards, third party certification and ethics. • Panel Discussions, Presentations, and Demonstrations with representatives from NC Meat and Poultry Inspection Division, USDA, and NC Cooperative Extension, as well as some of North Carolina's best meat producers, processors, butchers, chefs and food entrepreneurs. in addition to: HANDS‐ON TRAININGS Value‐Added Cuts and Efficiency Fabrication for Commercial Meat Processors (beef and pork) Dr. Gregg Rentfrow, University of Kentucky, Food & Meat Science and presented by Weaver Street Market: Artisanal Butchery for Professional Chefs and Home Cooks (separate sessions) Tia Harrison, Co‐Founder ‐The Butcher’s Guild, Owner ‐ Avedanos Meat Market and Executive Chef ‐ Sociale, San Francisco, CA Marissa Guggiana, Co‐Founder –The Butcher’s Guild, President ‐Sonoma Direct Sustainable Meats and Author of Primal Cuts: Cooking with America’s Best Butchers KEYNOTE Scaling the Supply of Quality, Locally Produced Meats Mike Lorentz, Lorentz Meats, Cannon Falls, MN ‐ Learn how this mid‐scale meat processing company has successfully grown to meet the demand for niche meat, providing custom slaughter & processing for both national niche brands and individual farmers. Interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at this event? http://www.carolinameatconference.com/ Full Conference Schedule and Attendee Registration available January 15th, 2011 NC Choices (http://www.ncchoices.com/) is a Center for Environmental Farming Systems' initiative that promotes sustainable food systems through the advancement of local, pasture‐based animal production, processing and marketing.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
The North Carolina Meat Goat Association will be holding a Spring Sale Prospect Show on January 16, 2010 at 11:00 AM in the Johnson County Livestock Arena in Smithfield, NC. Workshops will also be held at 10:00 AM in the arena. Fifty (50) light-weight wethers and does will be offered from consignors all over North Carolina for sale.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
We've had a couple of nice days - - still cold, but sunny. We are cutting and splitting wood this week. Trying to get a handle on all the logs that we have down that need to be cleaned up before Spring time. The last of my Boer goats were picked up today. I had a herd dispersal this weekend and was lucky enough to sell all of them five individuals in 4 days. Thanks to everyone who purchased my breeding stock and to all who have purchased meat goats from us in the past. After the Boer's all left, we rearranged the dairy goats in all our pastures. One group of Nigerian Dwarf goats is not too sure what to think about Scout and Spook, our Great Pyrenees livestock guardian dogs. They previously guarded the Boers. The Nigerians have always been guarded by llamas so this is new to them. They are not too happy about being in a new pasture but they will adjust in a few days. Now, everyone has lots of space and I think they will enjoy it more when Spring comes. All the new Nigerian Dwarf babies had their pictures made and they on our website! I'm still waiting on a few stragglers to kid. "Chunky Monkey" is still holding on. Now she sits like a dog in her pen on her haunches instead of the usual lay down.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
A limited selection of our soap will be carried at Monitor Roller Mill in Walnut Cove beginning Monday. They can be reached at 336.591.4126 for hours and availability. The next time you are in Walnut Cove, visit Monitor Roller Mill and purchase your animal feed and goat's milk soap in the same location. Monitor Roller Mill is the only feed store in our area that carries Purina LabDiet 5025 Guinea Pig food in 50 pound bags which we use to feed our cavies. LabDiet is a great feed and is very economical in large quantities.
Saturday, January 9, 2010
I found an interesting site regarding growing small farms by Chatham County's North Carolina Cooperative Extension. Take time to look at this site, covering many aspects of farming including producion, marketing and local farm profiles including Celebrity Dairy. Also included are Buy Local Guides and Farmer's Markets for this area. There is plenty to read and learn in Web Resources regarding Small-Scale Livestock.
Friday, January 8, 2010
We've put them in box trucks, mini vans, horse trailers, stock trailers and in cages in the back of pickup trucks, but this is a new idea for llama deliveries. If only I still had my Ford Explorer with the luggage rack on top.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
This morning it is still cold with the temperature being 17 degrees at 7:30 AM. There is a heavy frost and all the water troughs are frozen over and this afternoon the weather people are calling for a light dusting of snow. We've still got snow from three weeks ago and we've discovered a new toy for sledding - - a golf car top *** fast! Cain and Abel, my first ADGA registered Nubian kids, were picked up yesterday afternoon to go to their new home in South Carolina to be trained as pack animals. They had their hooves trimmed, were tattooed and dewormed before pickup. I'll miss them. They were very sweet and friendly bucklings. I'll be milking Cain and Abel's mom, Jackie, beginning today. Since the weather is so cold, I'm going to milk her inside of the barn instead of in my "open air" milk room. Too cold out there for her and me both! No new arrivals from the Nigerian Dwarf goats since Sunday. Still have a few left to kid. Raphaela looks as though she is going to explode. Her nickname is "Chunky Monkey" if that gives you any indication of what she looks like normally. She loves to eat! I also made a new Buffalo Gal's goat's milk soap last night - - This, That and the Other. It is an extra-powerful hand scrubbing soap that is a combination of all my other soaps plus added pumice for cleansing. It will be great to keep beside a laundry or kitchen sink. Look for it to be available in February! Speaking of soap, I now have Valentine's Day gift sets available at Cricket's Nest Craft Shop, Mostly Local and Germanton Antiques & Consignments along with the farm. They contain soap in a red metal bucket or white ceramic bag with hearts along with a Valentine's Day card. Also, there are individual soaps in white, pink and red organza favor bags along with a Valentines Day card. Look for these new items.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Dude's Nigerian Dwarf kids are arriving and we have lots of colors! We had eleven (11) born Sunday and have a few more does to kid. We also have some of CarsonCity's kids arriving too. With temperatures in the teen's every morning and the highs in the low 30's, it has been quite an experience and it is keeping us busy. We have heat lamps running in the barn keeping the day old kids warm. After a couple of days in their individual pens with the heat lamps, they are transferred to a "community pen" with their moms. This is where they get to show their independence. I already have a couple of kids who escape through the 4X4 inch wire to go spend time with the Nubians and even venture outside with the llama. When it is time to nurse, they venture back into the barn and back to their moms. I've lost count (not really - - I have some color coated neck bands (blue for bucks/red for does)to put on each kid labelled with their tattoo number to keep them separated), but we have approximately twenty (20) new kids running around! Picture day will be coming soon when it warms up and you can take a look at the new arrivals on our website.
A meeting will be held on January 7 at 7 PM at the Forsyth County Agriculture Building on Fairchild Drive to discuss Managing Your (Poultry) Flock For Winter Months. Everyone is invited. Preregistration is required. To RSVP, contact Annette at 336.703.2850.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Monday, January 4, 2010
Do you want to learn more about livestock (beef cattle, swine, meat goats, and sheep)? Attend the “Judging in January” event at NC State University January 24 & 25th, hosted by the North Carolina Jr. Polled Hereford Association. Read the agenda. View Registration form. For more information call April Bowman or Amy Thomas 703-2850 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sunday, January 3, 2010
In 2010, the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Century Farm Program will celebrate its 40th year — a milestone, but one significantly shorter than the program’s focus. The Century Farm Program started in 1970 at the N.C. State Fair with a push to find and honor farms that had been in continuous family ownership for 100 years or more. Accomplishing this is no easy task, and it may be even harder today with the amount of development pressure in certain parts of the state. When the program started, newspaper articles statewide spread the word that there would be a celebration at the State Fair in Raleigh and these farm families would be invited. A luncheon was hosted, starting a tradition of periodically honoring Century Farm families at the State Fair. That initial effort found more than 800 farms. Today there are roughly 1,600 in the program — an indication that is still going strong. To qualify for Century Farm status, farm owners must be able to show 100 years of continuous family ownership. That can come from courthouse records, deeds, or through family history. Farms receive a blue and yellow sign suitable for outdoor display, a directory of Century Farm members and a certificate signed by the Governor, Agriculture Commissioner and State Fair manager. Applications to apply for Century Farm status can be found here. The page also includes frequently asked questions, a short history of the Century Farm Program and a list of Century Farms by county. In Forsyth County, the following farms have achieved the Century Farm status: •Ruth Smith Abell •James H. Baker Jr. •Faye Artenius Pfaff Burns •Mrs. Ned M. Conrad •Richard Maxwell Conrad •Robert Carroll Conrad •Gladys C. Doub •Berry P. Holden •Lena Virginia Hunter •Linda M. Keeter •Adrian M. Kreeger •Jeffrey and Elizabeth McHone •Mrs. W. G. Moore •Benny Laster Perry •Susan Hunter Petree •Curtis Lentz Shore, Thomas Winburn Shore, Hugh Terry Shore, Bennie Ray Shore •Gaither Wayne Woosley Congratulations!