Settling into Winter on the Farm

November 8, 2022

The cattle have been brought back close to the yard and are content to eat hay (dried grass) now that any grass still out in the pasture is covered up by snow.  We feed them close to the bush so they can seek the shelter of the trees during snowy or windy conditions.

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The pigs did a good job of cleaning up the leftover produce in the garden this fall, and they've been moved to a fresh area for the winter.  They enjoy snuggling together in their shelter, where they have access to either sleep in or eat their hay bale!

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The "eggmobiles" have been moved back into the yard for the colder months and the laying hens enjoy the warmth and shelter on colder days but enjoy pecking and exploring outside on warmer winter days, especially in the sunshine!

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Every day, the laying hens get a couple trays of fresh greens called "fodder" (sprouted barley), which I'm growing in the house this winter.  It takes 7 days for the sprouts to grow to the point that I feed them to the chickens.  The birds love greens, and this is their favorite winter-time treat!  The highly-nutritious fodder helps keep them healthy during the cold months when there is not grass for them to eat, and also keep the egg yolks a darker yellow.

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Our four livestock guardian dogs (LGD's) continue to patrol the yard and keep us and our animals safe from predators in winter.  We often hear coyotes howling all around us at night, but our dogs keep them a safe distance away.  With their thick winter coats, they have great times chasing each other around in the snow!  Below are our two younger LGD's, Coco and Charlie.

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Roxane Penner

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