March 2019

Hello  everyone.  We are glad you stopped by, whether the first time or more.March certainly came in like a lion this year.  That is not all bad!  We need the cold and snow now not in May.  Also the snow provides much needed moisture for our fields and ponds   I’m told it also provides minerals the soil need to be healthy so we have good pastures for our grass fed livestock and poultry.  Anyway God knows best and besides man hasn’t yet figured out a way to change what God ordains weather wise.
The first 100 baby chicks are scheduled to arrive this Wednesday.  I haven’t quite got the brooder house set up but will by then.  For sure heat lights will be essential for awhile this year.
The hens have gone on strike! Was getting 17 to 20 eggs per day, even through the short days and cold.  Now they think they need a break and we are lucky to get 2 eggs per day.  Hope they change their minds pretty soon.  We need the eggs for those of you who get hen fruit from us.
Our lambs are nice and fat.  They will soon be ready for people’s freezers.  Also the two billy goats.  Our baby goat is funny to watch.  He has his head in the feed pan just as quick as the big goats and he thinks he rules the roost most days.  He is so plump and active. His mama is the only one who seems to correct him–the billies do not.
Had to process a couple of ducks who got hurt the other day.  They were both hens and full of eggs which would likely have been laid in a couple of weeks. I hate it when things like that happen but on the farm it does.
The young men of the family are getting my dairy barn finished and none too  soon as the cow will calve the first of April and I am ready for some fresh milk and cream.  She is a first time mom and will have to be taught to behave in the barn for milking.  Always look forward to see what the calf will look like.  Our beef cows will start calving about the same time so hope the weather is a little warmer. 
Like most of the farmers in this area we are concerned about having enough hay.  It takes more in cold weather and also toward the last part of the cows’ pregnancy.  To be sure they are well nourished for calving we are feeding some grain this winter—something we don’t usually do.  Not as certain our hay is as good quality as we generally have.
Have been looking at the catalogs about ordering my turkeys.  Think I will try some different ones this year.  Also looking for some Muscovey ducks.  They are supposed to be hardy and eat lots of flies and other bugs.   And we have plenty of those pests!
Wishing you all a fun St Patrick’s Day, first day of Spring and a holy Lent , if you keep Lent in preparation for Easter. May God watch over you and bless you.   Virginia from Missouri Gems-Toole Farms