Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Eight Weeks of Summer

It has been way to long since I have blogged, pretty close to eight weeks. The long and short of things, is that farming has gone pretty good this year, but we have not sold our home yet, so things are not moving on that front. We have had quite a few lookers, but no buyers yet. With two kids at home this summer, farm progress is mostly limited to nap times and the occasional weekend. That pretty much means, if it is not urgent, it does not get done.

As for the farm, things are going better then they have in years. Our first batch of 180 broilers did quite well. We processed two beef in late June and sales from them have been brisk. Turkeys are doing quite well, despite having a young Red-tailed Hawk that is terrorizing them. We had seven calves born in June and July. The lambs look good going into fall, and our second batch of broilers arrives tomorrow.

Turkeys in the Brooder in Early July

Turkey Helper Feeding Turkeys in the Morning with Dad

Hawk Perched on Pen Terrorizing Turkeys

Brooder Cleaned out for the Fall Round of Chickens

The turkeys had made it through the brooder stage of Development with only a handful of deaths. This is incredibly rare. Things were going great until this hawk starts scaring the birds and forces 13 to die in a pile-up in their pen. Aside from that one incident, the turkeys have done well. 

A Whole Cluster of Young Calves Testing Fences All Across the Farm

Having so many calves is nice, but they have been testing fences and did cause a large breakout of the herd a week ago that forces me to extract the herd from a corn field. The vast majority of calves are male, which is good if you like grass-fed beef in mid 2016. This is the first year where cattle have really helped to pay bills and generate some income around the farm. We have processed two beef, with one more scheduled in the fall and we sold a cow and heifer as breeding stock. 

Cattle Spread Out Across the Hillside

We are closing in on Fall. My daughter goes back to preschool in two days, so it is time again to really pivot to focus on the new farm. I have told people I am moving cattle over there this Winter, so I have a lot to accomplish in a limited amount of time. Janice has been busy with classes work to finish her MBA much of the summer, so I have not accomplished much at the new farm. I think it has been almost six weeks since I started sinking new corner posts in to fence out the house and farm building area, and I have not been back since then.  I have to get the new fence built, replace posts and shore up the existing fence, install power, and install the water system, before I can move the cattle. That is a lot to do in 16 to 18 weeks.  

Starting to Sink Corner Posts at the New Farm

The kids are doing well. Our Daughter is helping more with chores, and our Son is growing more and more comfortable outside. With preschool starting up again, I have no doubt the routine will be good for both of them. She will benefit from the structure, and he will benefit from not having his Sister up in his business all of the time. 

Helping Daddy Herd some Sheep

Hat Boy

Aside from that, I don't have much to report. I hope that we get an offer on this place soon so we can begin to make plans. All of my hay is out at the new farm, and I sold my old tractor back at the old farm, so I have few ways to move hay around there. Fall aways seems like a giant rush of activity that is over before you realize it. Keep your fingers crosses for us as we enter frantic fall.

 Sold the Old Tractor

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