Keeping It Simple This Year… I Hope

To be frank I’m good at biting off more then I can comfortably chew. Putting my self under more pressure then I really should. And the more I reflect on it, the more I think I should par back a little. This is surprising to me, yet at the same time, it feels good just thinking about it.

Two of my Silver Fox does. Something I WILL be focusing on this year.

I’ve spent a lot of time looking over our assets. Trying to squeeze every last bit for it all in my mind. I wish I could find a way to make pigs and a milk cow work. I would love to have that. However, when I pause and look at the way things are now, the number of animals we have, and what it takes to care for them. Adding more doesn’t feel wise, at this point. It’s similar when I reflect on last years garden. I tried to make so much happen that I spread my self too thin, and made poor decisions. Costing my self an entire garden. So….

The Garden

I’m going to concentrate my efforts. I may, or may not add a bit more to my raised bed garden. Another raise bed would be helpful, and not overwhelming. But that is what I’ll be using, my raised bed garden. I’m focusing on herb, flowers, strawberries, and a few others. I am NOT going to try to grow 14 different types of tomatoes, but maybe 3. Just nice and basic. Focusing on my strengths.

The Chickens, Ducks, and Geese

We have two types of Geese right now, brown Chinese/African and Cotton Patch Geese. I need unrelated mates for the CPG, and so this time around will be a mixed flock raised just for meat. I’m on the waiting list for more CPG this year, so hopefully I can get up to 3 more. We only have two female geese, and I’m going to let them hatch their own, and we get what we get.

We have a trio of Muscovy Ducks. They are known to be fly eating machines, and highly prolific. The plan is to let them raise their own, then harvest or sale what they produce.

With our chickens we held back a few meat birds. Including a large red rooster, and a few mild mannered hens. The hens have laid very well. At one point I wanted to cross them with some larger heritage stock, and I could still do that in the future. But first off I want to grow out at least 50 double breasted meat type birds. I’ve got a few hens, and two other roosters I’d like to hatch some more layers from. But that could also be done later in the year. Meat and eggs is what we are raising and keeping chickens for. Maybe some day I’ll do more selective crosses for certain egg colors, but for now hatching meat chicks, and a few replacement hens will be just fine. So I could make due with two coops, and maybe and arena for a select trio. Right now our entire chicken flock is 100% range, and shelter and lay in the same shed where our rabbits are kept. And that is something I’d like to change.

The Rabbits

I’m trying to talk my self into narrowing my focus on my Mini Rex rabbits so that I have more resources for the Silver Fox, and standard Rex. Please not that large Rex and only referred to as ‘standard’ to differentiate them from Mini Rex. The actual name of the larger breed is simply Rex. But like I was saying, I’d like to narrow my focus. I’ve got a few of the Minis that I really really like just a bit more then the others. So many colors are recognized within the breed that you really have to use restraint. And some colors don’t mix well when you are breeding show lines, since some breeders don’t want odd colors popping up. I could brake my herd into two groups, chocolate carriers, and chinchilla. That means parting with my Vienna’s. But it’s worth it to me because I’ve really always wanted Rex, not Mini Rex. I could just sale all of what I have, but the appeal of see what the next generation is like is just too strong to walk away from fully. At least just yet.

Now for some very exciting news. At least for me. My first Silver Fox doe is due this weekend. And I will be bringing home another doe, who is a tort carrier. This means I’ll be working with the very rare, and not yet recognized (by the ARBA) Alaskan Red Fox Rabbit. Simply put it’s a tort Silver Fox. All of the Silver Fox varieties could use diligent supporters of the breed. People who cull hard, and stay true to these rabbits as meat and pelt producers. And that is what we will be doing here.

A 1 week old Mini Rex litter
3 week old Mini Rex
A favorite Ivy, touching noses with our farm dog Charlotte

Thanks for being here!

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