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Our farm’s print-on-demand merchandise is the perfect way to show your support for sustainable and locally-grown agriculture. Our designs are inspired by the beauty and bounty of our farm, showcasing our commitment to growing fresh and wholesome produce for our community. Each item is printed to order, ensuring that you receive a unique and high-quality product. From comfortable t-shirts to practical tote bags, there’s something for everyone. Plus, all the proceeds from each sale go directly back into our farm, helping us to continue our mission of promoting sustainable agriculture. So whether you’re shopping for yourself or looking for a unique gift, our print-on-demand merchandise is the perfect choice.
Here is a detailed explanation of the steps to rebuild our flock of ducks and chickens, including buying a livestock guardian dog, hatching eggs, incubating eggs, and reinforcing the coop:
- Finding and buying a livestock guardian dog (LGD): I initiated the rebuilding of our flock by searching for and purchasing an LGD. This specific breed of dog can effectively protect livestock from predators like bobcats through specialized training. Despite the time investment required for training a puppy, I preferred to find a dog that needed to be rehomed. My search led me to an adult dog trained by breeders, and I reached an agreement with the owner for a payment plan. I traveled to Creston, picked up the dog, and brought her home.
- Finding and buying ducks and chickens: Having adult birds will give us a huge head start on eggs. From egg to producing eggs it can take six months or more. Once I had an LGD in place, I started looking for new ducks and chickens to add to my flock. Through social media, I found four duck hens and a drake that I arranged to pick up at the same time as Winter. Kyla from Black Goat feed store heard about our situation and has offered to sell me all her gold-laced Brahma chickens, as she was looking to downsize. By taking this action, we will increase our chicken flock three times and be able to sell chicken eggs as well!
- Hatching the eggs from our fallen ducks: We put the last weeks worth of egg collection into the incubator in hopes of rebuilding our flock. We put 52 duck eggs in the incubator and in the last couple of days baby ducks hatched! We hatched out 28 ducklings for our fallen birds. It’s not often you get life from death.
- Hatching eggs: Before Kyla offered to sell me her chickens I found a farm that sold hatching chicken eggs. I ordered two different breeds of chickens, received them, and they are in the incubator now. We are now waiting for them to hatch 🙂
- Brooding: Once the ducklings & chicks hatch, a brooder is needed to provide warmth and shelter for the babies until they’re old enough to be moved to the coop. We use a couple 30 gl fish tanks, with heat lamps. However, with the success of the ducklings hatching and the hopes of the chicks hatching we will need another brooder, feeder, waterer, and heat lamp.
- Re-enforcing the coop: Our next big project is to upgrade the coop to prevent another predator attack. It’s important to re-enforce the coop with ground to roof fencing. To do this we will need to tear out the existing coop structure and create an open concept within the fully fenced-off building. With only five ducks in there right now is the perfect time to complete this project before we move in more birds. We will need heavy-duty fencing to cover all the openings.
By following these steps, we will be able to rebuild our flock and ensure their safety from predators. It is important to prioritize the safety and well-being of our livestock to ensure the success of the farm.