Now that the rush of summer is gone, we were truly hoping that autumn and winter would be a little easier and calmer. So far, we have been wrong.
Our final batch of chickens for this season was brought to the processor last week. They are now in the freezer awaiting their new homes in the ovens and soup pots of our customers. This batch of chickens finished a little smaller than previous batches. We aren’t sure if it’s due to being later in the year, and the pasture not being quite as nutritious, or something else. That being said, they are just as delicious as the previous birds sent to the processor. We had to acquire an additional freezer to store these birds in. We are hoping to have it emptied out by the end of the year. Or at least have one of the meat freezers emptied out by then.
We have acquired several new animals recently. We have three Jacob sheep that we purchased from Sweetgrass Jacobs back at the end of October. One named Limerick, who is a two horned ram born in April of this year. We also got one two horned female and a four horned female, named Haiku and Tanka respectively. They are all quite skittish, but they are slowly warming up to us.
In addition to the sheep, we’ve acquired five goats. They came from a farm that was downsizing. We have three wethers and two does. The wethers are named Taco, Milkshake and Nugget, and the does are Curry and Fudge. Yes, we named them all after foods that goats can be made into. But we don’t plan on eating these ones any time soon.
Our chickens and ducks have slowed their egg production. We are still getting a dozen or two a day, but that’s a far cry from the overflowing baskets we were getting for most of the summer. It will pick back up in the spring. Everything has a season, and egg season is definitely early summer!
We will be processing our own turkey for Thanksgiving, and we are really looking forward to that. We have two really large males that we will choose between. The second one will be served up at the December holiday dinner. We hope the rest of the turkeys will lay eggs for us to hatch and raise up for next year’s holiday dinners.
All of our tasty products, and some of Nicole’s knitted items will be available at the Marshall Farmers Market at the B.E. Henry building. We hope to see you there! If you can’t make it, feel free to send us a message to make arrangements to get some eggs or chicken. Happy almost-winter!
We’ve been told that spring is coming, but we beg to differ. We’ve had alternating days of wonderful weather, with clear skies and reasonable temperatures, and complete garbage. This morning, I woke up to snow dusting the entire yard. Luna wasn’t super impressed with it when I took her out to do her business and care for the animals.
First thing every morning, we let the flock out of the coop. The chickens, ducks and muscovies spend the night in the coop, and the geese stay outside. They are too large, and just too mean to keep in with the rest of the flock overnight. Plus, we have them as “guard dogs” so we want them to make noise if something is amiss. This is what “Unleashing the Feather Beasts” looked like back in the fall.
In the last month or so, we’ve added several birds to our flock. The first were a pair of male muscovies. We got a white, as well as a lavender. Shortly after, we got a trio of females to go with them. We plan on breeding them to raise babies for both egg and meat production. We also acquired three female Toulouse geese, which seem to have bonded with the trio of American Buff geese we have. The plan for those is also raising babies for meat production. Plus, we’ll enjoy some eggs while we wait for the ladies to go broody.
We have also ordered more layers, as well as our first batch of meat birds. The layers are going to be Easter Eggers, to add a little color to our cartons for the market. The meat birds are Red Rangers as well as Husky Rangers. The Easter Eggers will be added to our laying flock after brooding in the barn for a few weeks. The Rangers will be put into tractors to be moved around our pasture. We have several reasons we’ve chosen Rangers as opposed to the usual Cornish Cross meat birds, which we will go into more detail in a future post. Keep an eye out for that one!
Today, February 23, is National CSA Sign Up Day. We would like to take this opportunity to announce our Egg CSA!
Our eggs have been in high demand since we started selling them. We have several customers to tell us how much they and their children love our eggs. Because of this, we decided to offer a CSA as a thank you to these great people.
First off, what is a CSA? CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. What it means is that the community or consumer prepays for a “farm share” or a set amount of product at the start of the season, and gets great farm produced food throughout the season in return. The consumer wins because their share is worth more than what the products would cost at market, and the farmer wins because they get more money up front to help fund their growing season.
How is our CSA going to work? We will sell CSA punch cards good for twelve dozen eggs, and you will pay for ten dozen. You will choose either chicken eggs, or duck eggs at the beginning, and the cards will be marked accordingly. We are starting with a very limited number of shares, as we would still like to provide eggs to other market shoppers.
Once you purchase your punch card, you will be able to purchase eggs with it whenever you want! They won’t expire, and you can choose to skip a few weeks, or get a few dozen at a time. We do ask that if you need several dozen at once to let us know as soon as possible, so that we can set them aside for you. Eggs can be picked up at the Marshall Area Farmers Market, or if you message our Facebook page, we can make other pickup/drop-off arrangements. We also cannot guarantee that we will have eggs available at the market later in the day. We sell out most weeks, so again, if you need eggs, just let us know ahead of time.
If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to ask! We will respond as quickly as possible. If you would like to sign up, email us and let us know if you’d like the duck share or the chicken share. Thank you for supporting us as we endeavor to grow our farm.