Sunday, January 3, 2010

It's a Challenge..........

Raising any type of livestock in Illinois in winter can be challenging. This winter is no exception. With high temperatures in the single digits, keeping everything warm and cozy is a never ending battle.

I'm very blessed though. I've got a few things that I wouldn't want raise critters without!

First and foremost..............a nice warm barn!

This barn was a blessing to me and I'm very very thankful for it every single day! It isn't finished yet. We still have to trim it out and get it stained. Hopefully that will happen this summer. It is 24x32 and has a 12' lean to across the back. It also has two 12x12 stalls and one 12x8 stall. They are perfect maternity wards, and yet still big enough to bring the horse in if we need to. This summer I plan on converting one of the 12x12 stalls into 2 kidding stalls. That will give me three permanent kidding stalls. The 12x8 stall is already a permanent kidding stall.

Secondly..........heated water buckets!
Oh my how wonderfully fabulous these little things are. They are a bit pricey, but well worth the cost. Back when I had two horses, I just used a stock tank with a heater in it, but it is too tall for the goats to drink out of. Now that I have only the one horse, I just use two heated buckets and refill them twice a day. That way all my critters are assured fresh clean water!

Third..............a fluffy kitty to keep the mice, moles, and voles down!
This is our cat Willow, and she is a wonderful kitty! She's about 6 years old and a wonderful mouser. I feed her a handful of food once a day and she stays sleek and fit on that in addition to the steady diet of rodents that she catches. My barn is pest free thanks to her!

And last.............a herd of fluffy goats with a horse tossed in for good measure!
Please excuse the quality of this photo. I'm not sure what was going on with my camera! Could it have been that the temperature was hovering around 8*? I guess we'll never know! Anyway, this is the family all out for supper together. The three girls are bred right now and Luke is still young so since I'm not milking I've been letting them stay together all the time. Once the kids start arriving in March, Luke will have to go back to solitary confinement, but for now he and our wether Icing Ears are enjoying being part of the herd.
Thanks for reading about what makes my winter chores easier!
Till next time.................GOD BLESS FROM GOODWIFE FARM!

No comments:

Post a Comment