It does not normally get this cold in South Carolina for this long. We usually have more trouble in the summer keeping animals cool. The biggest challenge was watering the animals which meant carrying water to everyone several times a day. The baby chicks stay inside in their heated brooders. The larger birds, outside, beside their regular shelters get fresh bedding, wind breaks and water pans. I added a few pictures to the gallery.
We started out turkey poults in swimming pools this year and did real well with that. We have found baby turkeys to be real fragile and the pools dida good job of cutting down on drafts and giving them no corners to pile up in. This only lasts a week or two as they pretty quickly start jumping out of the pools. Then we move them to outside shelters for a month until they are ready to be turned loose. They do roam on the farm. Getting everywhere and on everything. Much to my chagrin they like to chew on the wires on my trailers.
The birds are mostly Broad Breasted Bronze with a few Broad Breasted Whites. We bag them with the necks, hearts and livers for those of you who like to make your own gravy. Mmmm. they range from 10-20 lbs now but we may have some bigger ones as we get closer to Thanksgiving.
We have been messing around with Muscovy Ducks over the last couple years, and when we found out our processor could pluck them well, we decided to start offering them on the site. The hens are $35 and weigh 4-5 lbs. The drakes weigh 8-10 lbs and cost $50. With future batches we will be offering breasts and legs separately.
We have started our baby turkeys. We are having real good luck this year raising them in wading pools. It works for about 2 weeks before they get big enough to fly/hop out. Turkeys behave very different from chickens, and it is a pleasure having their curious selves around. They do like to explore -- but it gets them into trouble. I got to the processing plant a week ago and found a turkey poult had gotten out of its pen, wandered 200 feet to the trailer and hopped about for the ride. Silly bird.
Had a little snow today. We have had a crazy warm winter. Great weather for raising animals in. The snow today made everything look pretty the way it does. We spent the last month building an addition to the freezer for packing our orders. We get to move out of the shipping container!
As we've moved to a new farm, we figured it was time for a new website! I'll be working to keep updates on here to share what is going on around the farm and what new projects are underway.
Our pigs are doing well, and we've got a new litter on the farm. They're great at clearing the underbrush as we clear some land in preparation for some new pasture.