Friday, March 14, 2008

new hive on the way

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know I had bees in Idaho. You also know those same bees were sent packing in a swarm when a jerk bear destroyed their hive. I took the hit, and now I'm starting over this May. New bees are on the way May 10th. I have to pick them up from the apiary in Granville NY (an hour south of me) on that Saturday and install them in the hive that same day. I should be getting my laying hens around the same time, so it could be a full out farm installation weekend. If anyone of my friends or family want to visit that weekend and help out, that would be aces. If you get stung (you won’t) I’ll even throw in a free lunch.

In other news, my love of dairy goats has gotten me an invite to visit a vermont goat dairy operation north of me called willow moon farm. I won't be getting any kids anytime soon, but I can see how they are housed, ask questions, learn more about the Nigerian Dwarf and pet a few yellow-eyed horned heads. Besides informal goat training, there will be formal sheep training soon. Sheep 101 is March 29th, and will be a full day at a local farm in Danby. Sheep are becoming more and more of an interest and dream every year. A few days ago a Southdown Sheep farm near me asked if I wanted a pair of lambs of purebred babydoll sheep (miniature sheep). I had to turn them down, but man... I flinched. Anyway, I'll have plenty of pictures and posts ahead from both.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

nigerian dwarf kid (i want one so much)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

preparation

There’s a bale of straw in the wagon, and another two in the garden shed. I bought chick fonts and feeders and this weekend I’ll get their feed and a heat bulb for them. I am trying not to spend more than fifteen dollars a weekend on livestock adventures because it’s easy to get out of hand. With chickens being the yuppie suburb pet of thousands now, there are designer yard coops and overpriced treats and feeds stacking pet store shelves. I’m trying to keep it basic. MY birds get a mixture of 60% organic layer feed, 30% scratch grains, 8% oyster shell and 2% grit. I mix it in buckets and a full bucket lasts over a week. The chicks however, just get their special puppy chow chick feed and some chick sized grit (rocks). I look forward to the summer when I’ll be able to go out to the shed at 6, collect eggs, say hi to the gang and let them out into the woods to patrol.

In other news, I have been trying to learn some traditional Irish music on the fiddle. I have one song down called the scartaglen slide, and am working on a really fast fancy reel called man of the house. What I really want to learn are the old Scottish reels and waltzes. I love a good waltz more than most. It’s a whole new animal for me, and the songs take me days to learn what takes a minute to play, but since Scotch/Irish music is the heart and soul of Old Time music, I feel I should know it. Plus, whipping out man of the house someday in Ireland would be awesome.

I really want to get a Nigerian Dwarf wether but can’t justify it, but if you ever saw a miniature goat kid, you’d understand. Someday, there will be sheep and goats. For now, chickens

Monday, March 10, 2008

seedlings!!!