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Your Homestead Tell and show others with words and pictures how you built or are building your homestead and how you keep things going day-to-day. One thread per member, please.

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  #21  
Old 09-12-2013, 12:40 AM
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Txanne Female Txanne is offline
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It is beautiful place.
Been through a couple of times.
Vast and open spaces.

And Lady--I am glad you got to get away--you needed down time.
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  #22  
Old 09-12-2013, 11:01 AM
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Great looking place. Maybe I can visit someday.
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  #23  
Old 09-12-2013, 08:03 PM
OzarksLady Female OzarksLady is offline
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Thanks for the photos Hummer. Glad you got a kitchen pass from the homestead.
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  #24  
Old 10-26-2013, 02:26 PM
humbug Female humbug is offline
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I haven't posted on this in awhile. I have been busy getting the harvest in and taken care of. i had a good harvest of squash and pumpkins. Those will be welcomed over the cold winter months. I have a fair amount of potatoes and onions stashed away to hold me through winter too.
Now an update on my pheasant project this year. The pheasant were definitely a learning experience. They were not too bad to brood. They do learn to fly a lot earlier than chickens. So I had to cover the brooder box with wire before they were big enough to come out of the brooder. I built a pheasant pen using welded wire panels covered with chicken wire. I then covered it with bird netting. The bird netting was not strong enough to contain the pheasant when they got bigger and I lost a couple learning this lesson. Then they started killing each other. I did not realize that they are so cannibalistic. I butchered them all yesterday after finding two more dead ones yesterday morning. I caught them in the pen and put them in a dog crate/kennel to transport them to where I was butchering them. They were not that hard to butcher, but I skinned them. I was down to the last crate of them and looked over and the last seven somehow got the crate door open...and flew off..I must have not gotten the door latched good. I have a little over $400.00 in feed and the cost of the 35 birds. 3 birds died during brooding, 2 escaped through the bird netting, 7 were killed through cannibalism, 7 set themselves free during butchering leaving me with 16 butchered birds...that works out to about $25.00 a bird. That doesn't include the price of the pen. Even had I not lost any birds the cost would have been about $11.50 a bird. So I have decided that I will not be raising anymore pheasant unless I can find a cheaper source of feed. Commercial feed is just too expensive.
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  #25  
Old 11-01-2013, 01:31 AM
BIGGKIDD Male BIGGKIDD is offline
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Its a shame to have to give up on something you wanted to do. Also wise to know your limits. I hope you can find another feed source if this is something you wish to continue. What is your break even point for per bird cost? Are there other food source options, wild foods you could harvest and feed? IDK anything about birds.

Good Luck
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  #26  
Old 11-01-2013, 02:30 AM
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If........ If you have room in/near your garden for about 20 rows of dent corn..... About 50 x 100', at 30" rows.... But with hand/small plot planting you can do 16" rows successfully. That should not be too much to handle without machinery, as in hand harvest..... That should give you a couple hundred pounds of shelled corn to feed as is or crack it as needed for small chicks...

This combined with a like size of area of oats for instance... Just cut with a scythe bundle by hand and use as is for a combination of something for the birds to pick at and bedding..... Several small square bales of grass hay for them to pick through.... All the feed doesn't need to fit in a "feeder".....

You kind of have to fence birds in like you were trying to fence bears out....

Good luck....
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  #27  
Old 11-04-2013, 09:48 PM
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I am feeling the same way about our guineas. Sure, they ate a lot of bugs this summer, but winter is coming and they are just going to be eating feed and producing nothing. We are about to put the two males in the freezer. That will be some pretty expensive meat. We will keep the remaining female as a pet. But the whole experience was costly and exasperating. Live an learn.
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  #28  
Old 11-12-2013, 12:36 PM
humbug Female humbug is offline
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I have been working inside my house lately. The toilet in the spare bathroom was leaking, just a small seepage. I couldn't figure out where it was coming from so I assumed it was the wax ring. I unbolted the toilet from the floor, scraped off the old wax and replaced it with a new ring. The floor underneath was damaged and will have to be cut out and replaced. That bathroom is on the remodel list for this year so I put the toilet back in with the new wax ring. I turned on the water and still leaking...in fact really leaking between the tank and bowl. There is a gasket there so I figure it needs to be replaced. The toilet tank is attached to the bowl by two bolts. Should be easy to remove..right? The bolts were rusted to the nuts. So on to the internet to find a way to remove them. I tried putting WD40 on them. It didn't work. The advice online was to cut the bolts with a hacksaw blade. My toilet has two square rubber spacers on each side of the tank that would not allow a hacksaw into the space where the bolts were. I called my local handyman, his name is handy Andy. Funny..huh? He told me to take a dremel and grind or cut them off. So I borrowed a dremel from my son. I tried cutting them off with a diamond disk. It broke the disk. I was finally able to grind them off with the grinding bit. I think that a dremel is a very handy tool and has its place on the homestead.
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  #29  
Old 11-13-2013, 10:51 AM
BIGGKIDD Male BIGGKIDD is offline
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Yes indeed dremel tools are very handy. I have worn three out in the last 20 or so years. I need to get another. Glad you found the problem.
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  #30  
Old 11-23-2013, 01:00 AM
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Toilets are a constant source of aggravation. Good tip on the Dremel.
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  #31  
Old 02-22-2014, 07:11 PM
humbug Female humbug is offline
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Been busy all winter long so have not spent much time online. I ended up purchasing 4 cords of wood that is not split. I have been busy splitting that a little a time and getting it put in the stack. I have been working inside redoing my kitchen. I have been learning how to tape and texture walls. It has been a real challenge to get it to look nice. I have decided to raise some meat chickens as well as turkeys this year to butcher. I did the math and buying the feed at the feed store is going to make the price of the birds very expensive. So after doing lot of research I have decided to plant pasture grass in the part of the garden that has my fruit trees in it. I will then fence it off and free range my birds. I was also able to purchase tricale screenings from the local seed plant. The price was really good on the screenings and tricale is a good feed for chickens and turkeys. I got the birds ordered. I ordered 20 mixed heavy breed turkey and the 50 frypan special chickens from Cackle. They will be arriving around March 24. I hope that this is a more economical project than my pheasant last year. If anyone has any ideas on reducing feed cost let me know. I am willing to explore all possibilities.
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  #32  
Old 02-22-2014, 08:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by humbug View Post
Been busy all winter long so have not spent much time online. I ended up purchasing 4 cords of wood that is not split. I have been busy splitting that a little a time and getting it put in the stack. I have been working inside redoing my kitchen. I have been learning how to tape and texture walls. It has been a real challenge to get it to look nice. I have decided to raise some meat chickens as well as turkeys this year to butcher. I did the math and buying the feed at the feed store is going to make the price of the birds very expensive. So after doing lot of research I have decided to plant pasture grass in the part of the garden that has my fruit trees in it. I will then fence it off and free range my birds. I was also able to purchase tricale screenings from the local seed plant. The price was really good on the screenings and tricale is a good feed for chickens and turkeys. I got the birds ordered. I ordered 20 mixed heavy breed turkey and the 50 frypan special chickens from Cackle. They will be arriving around March 24. I hope that this is a more economical project than my pheasant last year. If anyone has any ideas on reducing feed cost let me know. I am willing to explore all possibilities.

So good to see our Lady homesteader back.
So glad your checking in and updating us. Missed you!!!!
I had a neighbor that had a contract to pick up scraps from one cafe.
He had the biggest eggs and fryers I have ever seen.

He had a huge pot he cooked the scraps--just for his peace of mind-though.
Also got the way past day old breads.
Also maybe check veggie farmers for their bad/out of date produce.

Free-range fryers will be so healthy and less feed.

The last time I did a taped/bedded a room I had more on me and in my hair than I did on the walls. :
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  #33  
Old 02-23-2014, 10:16 PM
BIGGKIDD Male BIGGKIDD is offline
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Good to hear from ya! I hear you about the cost of feed. It's got me worried too. We are going to try chickens again this year.

Keep up the good work.
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  #34  
Old 03-26-2014, 08:32 PM
humbug Female humbug is offline
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Spring is a busy time around here. We have been lucky? and having an unusually warm March. We really need moisture as we are in a drought. I hope we pick up some more rain or snow. I got my garden worked up and planted a cover crop of oats and rye. I have been keeping it wet down but it is not up yet.I will till it under when it gets up about 6 inches. I planted 100 strawberry plants. I planted 75 last year, but the deer tore many of them out of the ground when they were eating them. I made some changes to the fence so am hoping I will be able to keep the deer out. My baby chicks arrived...
" "
Baby broiler chicks
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Last edited by humbug; 03-26-2014 at 08:33 PM. Reason: file too big
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  #35  
Old 03-26-2014, 08:35 PM
humbug Female humbug is offline
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And here are the baby turkeys
" "
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  #36  
Old 03-27-2014, 01:49 AM
BIGGKIDD Male BIGGKIDD is offline
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Nice bird's we just moved ours out to the coop last weekend. Oh what a relief. Wish I could send you some of our rain & snow. It's never been so wet in VA that I can remember. I don't think we have gone more than 4 days without rain in 15 months. It's waterlogged here!

Enjoy your chicks.
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  #37  
Old 01-29-2015, 02:30 PM
humbug Female humbug is offline
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Hi everyone. Sorry I have been missing in action for awhile. It has been really busy here. I haven't quit homesteading, just have been busy trying to get everything done.
The turkey project was both a success and a failure. We ordered broad breasted white turkeys last spring. By the time we butchered them we had about a 50% loss. I really feel that the broad breasted white turkeys are born looking for a place to die. We also purchased Narragansett and Royal Palm turkeys. We purchased from a local breeder. We ended up with a couple of standard bronze turkeys. I have to say these heritage turkeys are the way to go. They are hardy and we have only lost one. We kept both males and females of all three breeds to produce this years turkeys. We got our first egg from them a couple of days ago. We plan to incubate the eggs. Here is a picture of a couple of our gobblers.

" "
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  #38  
Old 01-29-2015, 02:36 PM
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The garden this last year was pretty good. It was a bumper tomato and corn year. It seemed like I canned and canned and canned. We also had a great squash year. We are still eating butternut and acorn squash from storage. We did have a disappointing potato year. The local potato farm had a low production year also, so I figure it must have been something in the weather. This is the newest addition to the homestead...what a great helper...

" "
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  #39  
Old 01-29-2015, 02:54 PM
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We bought a couple of butcher lambs this fall and have those in the freezer. We have been able eat from our freezer, and pantry most of the winter this year. It has been really great. We bought rooster chicks from cackle this year. They were one of the best investments we made. We had almost no loss and filled our freezer with wonderful broilers this fall. We also spent many pleasant hours fishing and put quite a few fish in the freezer. Here is my partner with his first Montana fish...

" "
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  #40  
Old 01-29-2015, 10:56 PM
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NICE tractor... Those little Yanmars are a real work saver... Especially with a loader... My John Deere is made by Yanmar, and about a size bigger than that one...

Nice fish.... When I worked in western Montana, bulk tied flies were .10 each.... I left about $5 or more worth of them hanging in the trees and brush.... Never did catch a fish.... My fly rod laid in the back window of my old Plymouth Duster until the sun made it brittle...

Glad your back...
Enjoy...
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