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My Homestead becoming a reality..

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by Boyd, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. Boyd

    Boyd Recipient of The Biff Twang

    Mar 14, 2009
    MI
    This is a subject I've thought long and hard on for the past decade. I've tried many methods and types of meat production.. Rabbits, Chickens, Coturnix Quail, and soon to try goats n pot bellied pigs.

    Life being as it is I find myself in a new career in a new town with a little more land than I had before. I am outside of a large city, but the way I have set things up, even the rabbit hutches don't stand out and unless you walk within 50' of them you won't know they are there...

    Quail are great, but with no power and no solar capabilities as of yet they aren't sustainable enough for me as I have to incubate all eggs.. Rabbits and Chickens I love.. Rabbits for meat, fur and their ability to turn anything they eat into the best fertilizer around. Chickens.. They'll eat anything that won't get out of their way.. Plus the gals lay eggs....

    See? I like the duplicity my critters bring me.... But new town, starting over..

    Rabbits..... Here is my start over pics

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    Now this is what most of my land looks like as of a week ago..

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    After yesterday....

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    Now the question is.. How do we maximize the use here? I left mature trees n all evergreen trees in the clearing we made. I want to use this for pasture for forage for rabbit tractors, goats, PBP's etc. Looking for ideas.. Planning on Clover, Vetch, Alfalfa, Timothy Hay and some Winter Wheat. Perhaps some Barley.. I've had enough rabbits to go through 100lbs of pellets a week, and I cut back by winter.. But by next spring/summer I plan on filling that field with critters. Any input would be appreciated!
     
  2. Cindiloohoo

    Cindiloohoo Quiet as a Church Mouse

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    Dec 19, 2009
    Southwest TN
    It looks GREAT Boyd!!! I'd get some tractors built for the bunnies for sure. Mine eat grass until the grass dies out. They hate going back to pellets!

    Build a high fence for goats.....or get really short goats [​IMG]
     
  3. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Those baby rabbits sure are precious. What about Muscovy ducks for meat? They are really good foragers and great mothers. They'll raise 2-3 clutches of ducklings during the warmer months and have a great survival rate. I haven't eaten any but I hear it's good stuff. I was thinking of growing out some ducklings to have processed. There is a really good book about homesteading in a small amount of space. It's called the Backyard Homestead. You could have my copy if you're interested. Unless you've moved really recently, we're close to eachother.
     
  4. Boyd

    Boyd Recipient of The Biff Twang

    Mar 14, 2009
    MI
    Quote:Grand Blanc, about 20 mins from my old house [​IMG]
     
  5. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    [​IMG] You lucky bugger! Well, you're welcome to the book. We are in fact close. Perhaps you'll need some ducklings in the spring... [​IMG]
     
  6. Matthew3590

    Matthew3590 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2011
    Middle, TN
    Always glad to see someones dream become reality. [​IMG]
     
  7. Baymule

    Baymule Chillin' With My Peeps

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    226
    Jul 1, 2010
    Northeast Texas
    Boyd, congrats on the new job and new place. How much land? and are you renting or buying? I like your pasture grasses plan and having goats and chickens. The rabbits look awesome, I like the set up, you built some nice hutches. Have you considered sheep?hair sheep? Lamb is soooo yummy!

    duckweed is up to 35% protein and can be used for up to 1/3 feed ration and could help out on the feed bill. perhaps you could raise it in a tank?

    http://www.mobot.org/jwcross/duckweed/growing-duckweed.htm

    Will
    predators be a problem? Is the place fenced?

    Your land clearing efforts are looking good [​IMG]
     
  8. Boyd

    Boyd Recipient of The Biff Twang

    Mar 14, 2009
    MI
    Quote:I've looked into duckweed for aquaponics and biodiesel but never considered harvesting for pellets.. Hm.. My dad is purchasing a portable pellet mill in the spring. If you are ever on facebook, look us up.. Boyd Craven Jr. And Boyd III, The urban rabbit project [​IMG]

    I don't know much about sheep. Goats I'm quasi-familiar with, and milking am a total newbie.. But I love me some goat milk and cheese when I can find it. Used to live right off a pig farm (big operation) so I know I don't want to deal with full sized hogs, but PBP's are a consideration!!

    As far as the land goes, we have 5 acres free and clear. No house payment, just the monthly tax bill that is almost as much as one [​IMG]

    Other than that, I am taking notes, and both my father and I are working on books about urban homesteading and self reliance. I guess my days as a boyscout are starting to pay off eh?
     
  9. Boyd

    Boyd Recipient of The Biff Twang

    Mar 14, 2009
    MI
    Quote:You know, Saddina told me I should look into Muscovy's, but haven't had a chance to yet!! They would be the perfect addition!!!

    No fencing as of yet, that is too much to handle pre-christmas paychecks, but come next spring we are looking to enclose with field fence and electric on the perimeter. Lotsa raccoon's out here, and neighbor's dogs.. But am thinking a GP for a dog for the mini pasture. What he don't kill and eat is something I would need to take care of anyways.. the 2 legged kind that is.
     
  10. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Muscovies are a great choice. They are perching ducks so they can get up out of the way better than other ducks if they need too. The females can fly well and eventhough the drakes are too heavy to fly, mine had no problem jumping and flapping up on top of a 50gallon storage bin that is 2ft tall. Caprice Acres (bycer) is where I got my females and she free ranges hers 24/7. Mine are free range but I lock them up at night. I keep the girls' wings clipped so they can't get in the trees or on the house since all my birds are stealth. Muscovies were the perfect choice for me, they are really quiet (the males hiss and huff and the girls only make quiet honking noises when distressed) and they were shown to be more effective than any other traditional fly abatement. They are also native to the mosquito coast so they are most excellent at eating mosquitoes.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2011

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