More animals

Do you keep livestock? Having any problems? Want to talk about it, whether it be sheep, goats, chickens, pigs, bees or llamas, here is your place to discuss.
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More animals

Post: #1995 leedarkwood
Sat Apr 16, 2005 5:36 am

Having got our three shetland ewes and a tup last month, got a real bargain yesterday, four angora goats for £20 each from a breeder giving up! They are adorable!

Lee

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Post: #2102 Chickenlady
Mon Apr 18, 2005 5:09 pm

You are so lucky! I don't have room for any livestock apart from a few chickens. If I did I would really like to keep sheep - I love them! They make me all maternal though, so I don't think I would be able to eat them, they would just have to be wool producers.

Are you using your livestock for meat, milk, wool, or all of these?

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Post: #2103 Andy Hamilton
Mon Apr 18, 2005 5:12 pm

I heard today that some new laws have been passed limiting the amount of livestock that you can keep. Whats all that about?
First we sow the seeds, nature grows the seeds then we eat the seeds. Neil Pye
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Post: #2118 leedarkwood
Mon Apr 18, 2005 7:45 pm

Where did you see that, Andy?

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Post: #2122 leedarkwood
Mon Apr 18, 2005 8:20 pm

Our first lamb was born here on Sunday morning. He is very cute, adorable like all young animals. But by the time he is six months old, having had a good life, he will have to go into the freezer, or we won't be able to have room for next years lambs! We keep animals in order to make the best use of our seven acres of Yorkshire hillside, and to free us from buying meat that we don't know where it comes from or what it has been fed! Yesterday I made a flying leap across the hen house, as I finally saw which chicken has been breaking and eating the eggs, caught her 'yellow beaked'! Put her in a pen overnight, and this morning we had to 'do the deed' and the chicken meat is now in the stock pot as I type. There is simply no other way of dealing with that problem! (I have tried mustard filled eggs etc, works short term). We want a prosperous and productive holding, that gives a good life for both us and the animals, but what ever animal you take on, be it dog, cow, hen, horse etc, on the day you take responsibility for that animal, you must also take on the eventual responsibility for one day deciding about that animal's death. Meat animals are as loved as any we have, but we know that their time with us is shorter. Unless you are a vegan, our diet requires that animals die for our food, calves are needed for cows to give milk, and of the eight or ten calves born to each milking cow, only one is needed to replace her! Half of the eggs hatched to get laying hens will be male. We think that it is better to take control of this yourself, which means making tough decisions and actions. It is foolish to keep your farm animals as pets, and rely on factory farms for your family's food! One moment that hen was being carefully handled and stroked, five second's later she was dead. We could just keep the angoras for their fleece, but with only a little more feeding, we will get two kids each from them every year. That is a lot of naturally raised, healthy food, for us and our friends, and to barter for other goods and services, freeing us further from the 'system'. Anyone want to come for dinner?

Lee

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Post: #3412 ina
Fri May 27, 2005 9:43 pm

Hi Lee

It's been a while since you wrote that last message, but if you are still with us, maybe you could give me a tip.

I have a couple of cashmere goats, have combed the fibre, but don't quite know how to process it myself. I know some producers of cashmere, but I don't just want to throw my lot in with their's - I'd like to have some kind of garment of my very own goats one of these days (or years...)! Somebody suggested I could make one glove one year, the other one next. But it actually looks quite a lot what I got off them in just this one go.

Do you do anything with the angora? Or do you just let it moult naturally and keep the goats mainly for meat?

Cheers
Ina

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Post: #3440 Andy Hamilton
Sat May 28, 2005 12:15 pm

leedarkwood wrote:Where did you see that, Andy?


Someone from Sky tv was talking to me about a program they are making, she had been talking to John Gardener from the self sufficiency site, he had told her.
First we sow the seeds, nature grows the seeds then we eat the seeds. Neil Pye
My best selling Homebrew book Booze for Free
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Post: #3478 Chickenlady
Sun May 29, 2005 3:45 pm

You're right, of course, Lee, about eating your animals if you are working towards proper self sufficiency. I suppose I would do it if I had to. It's just so alien to our culture now, isn't it? My in-laws both tell me their families kept a few animals as kids, and they just accepted they would find the odd one on their dinner plates. As adults they reared their own sheep, and as a kid my husband helped deliver the lambs, then enjoyed them a few months later in a stew.

As a child, it took me until my teens to make the association that the meat on my plate had once been a living creature (it arrived in plastic from Sainsburys), at which point I became vegetarian and stayed that way for 16 years! Now I do eat some meat, but only the ethically produced stuff.

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For ina

Post: #3493 leedarkwood
Mon May 30, 2005 7:35 am

If you only have a little fibre, I suggest you mix it with some other fibre, like some good wool, I could maybe send you some? Weigh a garment and then weigh your fibre, that will give you some idea about how much you have. See if there is a spinning guild near you, they should be able to help you work out the best way to get it spun, maybe you could swop some for spun thread? I washed my mohair (product of an angora goat) in my twin tub, without using the agitator, and now need to pick it over to 'open the fleece' by hand before running it through my combing machine (technology is wonderful sometimes....) and then I will learn to spin it. It is a slightly different technique to wool. I hope to produce a chunky wool that I can use on the knitting machine I got on the freecycle site (very recommmeded by the way).

Lee

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Post: #3495 ina
Mon May 30, 2005 8:07 am

Thanks, Lee - I think I once saw something about a spinning guild, so I shall enquire. I've got access to all sorts of wool, I'm surrounded by sheep; a friend of mine even keeps a breeding flock of merinos.

Do you wrap the mohair in something before you wash it? Otherwise I can imagine the machine might get rather "hairy"? And do you just use water, or add something soapy?

(Sorry about all these questions... But seeing that the fibre is quite precious, I don't want to spoil it!)

Cheers
Ina

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Post: #3497 leedarkwood
Mon May 30, 2005 8:13 am

mohair has to be washed hot, check before you tackle your cashmere, I washed mine in ecover and a little of that new stain remover stuff! You could make bags of net curtain, I didn't bother.
Lee

ina
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Post: #3505 ina
Mon May 30, 2005 11:48 am

Thanks for all that advice, Lee - I shall ask around and let you knwo how I get on. Maybe next year it's time for a "fashion show" of homespun luxury jumpers... :lol:

Cheers
Ina

ina
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Post: #3538 ina
Tue May 31, 2005 10:16 pm


I heard today that some new laws have been passed limiting the amount of livestock that you can keep. Whats all that about?


It's a long time you wrote that - I've been trying to find out more about this but no success. Can you give me more detail about who told you, and in what context?

I could only imagine that there's a limit to the number of animals you are allowed to keep before you have to be officially registered as livestock producer. That would make a lot of sense - I'm thinking of diseases like FMD and traceability (is that how you spell it - it looks a bit funny :oops: ). Have always wanted to find out for myself, so if there are new regulations I'd better do something about it!

Ina[/quote]

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Post: #3539 ina
Tue May 31, 2005 10:18 pm

Sorry, had some trouble with the quote on that last one. The quote was from Andy, of course; and I have no idea why it said "quote" again after my name...

Ina

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Post: #3555 Andy Hamilton
Wed Jun 01, 2005 2:03 pm

Yep, it was from pat gardnier as in the top google search for self sufficiency http://pages.britishlibrary.net/patgardiner/

I heard it second hand as I was tlaking to a report from sky TV who was looking to make a similar version to the real good life. have not heard it from else where.
First we sow the seeds, nature grows the seeds then we eat the seeds. Neil Pye
My best selling Homebrew book Booze for Free
and...... Twitter
The Other Andy Hamilton - Drinks & Foraging


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