Thursday, October 03, 2013

Where to start Planning ( #Homesteading #Planning #SelfSufficient #Goats #Chickens )

Lately it seems as though I don't even know where to start. I spent part of the morning chasing a baby goat around the yard. Evidently he was having fun.

The issues -- some are friendly, some are overly friendly and others, they just want to be left alone. We want them for milk, of course. But then the thoughts been brought up about what to do with male babies. Do I even get enough off of selling them for it to be beneficial? Or is it more beneficial to raise them and slaughter them for the freezer.

Admittedly, I've never liked the idea of killing animals. But I'd by crazy to not realize that's how they get to your supermarket refrigerators and freezers. There is no magical wiggle of the nose and poof they appear. This way, I also know what they're eating and the conditions they're being raised under. Would it be better for me to feed a few extra goat mouths each season and stock the freezers?

I also realize I need sturdier fencing as they have a way of destroying almost everything they come into contact with (at least I have a couple that do).

The plan? As of right now I've decided I need the following areas:
Stud fencing/shelter
Female fencing/shelter
nursery fencing/shelter
breeding fencing/shelter
Jr fencing/shelter area females
Jr fencing/shelter area males
Milking area

I've figured I'll be spending a small fortune by the time I get this set up...but I'm hoping it will end in a decent profit and not so much money spend on purchasing milk (I've heard you can do almost anything with goat milk that you can with cow milk.)

I did end up with the rooster I hadn't wanted this past season. But, I'm looking at it as a good thing. I need to work on new fencing and coop designs since we have critters in the air that swoop down and steal unsuspecting baby critters. I had this wonderful (or so I thought as a person new to this) during summer. One by one I watched as wild critters picked off most of my stock. Any plan I tried seemed to fail. So, it's time for the complete fence rebuilding and a new outlook on livestock protection.

But how many chickens are too many? That's where it gets tough.

The plan? As of right now I've decided I need the following areas:
Egg layer fencing/coop
Egg layer breeding fencing/coop
meat chicken breeder/coop

meat chicken/coop

I do think the chicken areas will be the easiest to manage to set up, other than building the new coops. The plan is also to have the set ups with heat lighting so that they'll produce all through the colder weather months as well. I'm soon to stop buying eggs from the store (I hope).


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