Saturday, March 24, 2012

We are still here...

Wow... it has been forever and then some since I posted! We had a rough winter(snowless as it was) here on the farm, but things seem to be looking up this spring.

Here are some basic updates... I will try to add more later.

Pigs - We are currently out of pork and will be until our next litters are born. Both of our Hereford sows seem to be within 30 days of pigging, which will give us pork finished around Oct. We have to gilts being bred right now, hoping for late July, early August piglets. We are developing our own feed for the hogs from grains that can be grown right here on the farm... Our pork will be SOY-FREE, recieve non-GMO corn, and be completely vegetarian besides milk (this means our feed won't contain any animal, fish, blood, or bone protein commonly found in hog food. And of course it will be hormone and antiobiotic free. We are also planting some small pastures of clover, alfalfa, and grasses along with annuals such as peas, oats, and millet to rotate the hogs on. Once the cows are in milk, pigs will receive whey from cheesemaking as well as any extra milk, and alfalfa hay to supplement their diets.

Cows - We still have Daisy, our original Jersey cow as well as a purebred Jersey heifer, two Normande/Jersey crossbred heifers, and a young Jersey bull. We attempted AI'ing Daisy after her 2011 calf was born, and did not see her return to heat for about 3 months. When we took her to the vet this winter, we found that she was not in calf... so she is currently in with the beef bulls, trying for and Jan-Feb 2013 calf. Our three heifer Roana, Belle, and Gizelle will also be bred for spring 2013 as well. Unfortunatly we won't hvae any milk this summer, but with baby #5 of our own due in June, the timing actually worked out well for our family. During this time we are working on our Grade-A dairy parlor and cheese room, which will be built from an 'up-cycled' refridgerated semi trailer.

I will try to update a 'little more often' with what is going on here and the progress we are making.