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Lost Skills: Butchering

2022/12/19 Danielle 0

This is going to be a controversial post for some people, so please consider yourselves warned: I will be talking about killing animals, including the mention of blood and guts and slaughter. There are no images. It is my strongly held opinion that there is nothing wrong, per se, with humans eating meat – provided it is done ethically. Which is to say, the animals involved live good lives, and were killed in as stress-free and painless a manner as is possible. What this means, practically speaking, is that you need to either raise and kill, and butcher your own […]

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rotational high density grazing – small scale

2016/11/21 Danielle 0

I’ve ruminated at length about the pros and cons of goats (adorable miniature milk goats, and there are even Nigerian Dwarf goats in Australia now!) and sheep (ah the possibilities of non-tree-eating ruminants). I’ve talked about getting a house cow (still in the long term plan) and considered the cost versus difficulty versus milk quality and quantity of various breeds of all these animals. I’ve considered alpacas (beautiful silky suri fleece to spin) but decided that in the short term they’re too expensive for the returns they offer, and not friendly enough to get one just as a pet.   […]

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updates for the end of Oct 2016

2016/10/24 Danielle 0

I’m in the thick of my last assignment for the semester (for those not yet aware, I’m studying for my Masters of Sustainable Agriculture at Charles Stuart University). It’s a big one, and it’s due in a few days, so that’s where most of my writing effort is going at the moment.   That being the case, this post is going ot be short & sweet, just a few quick updates: The goslings are growing astonishingly quickly – they’re already three times as big as they were, and they’re giants compared to the chicks they’re in with. Also, they’ve learned […]

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Pilgrim (or Settlers) Geese

2016/10/13 Danielle 0

Geese aren’t everyone’s idea of a great back-yard animal. I’ve heard all the stories – they’re noisy, vicious, aggressive, messy, horrible hellbeasts. But I have a confession to make: I’ve always kinda wanted to have geese. Since well before I saw the film Fly Away Home (about a little girl who rescues a nest full of orphaned Canada geese, and raises them, teaching them to fly and eventually leading them on an ¬†epic microlight journey as she teaches them a safe migration route for their annual migration), I thought geese were adorable. I didn’t have any latent desire to have […]

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the hatching begins: 5 quail and counting

2016/09/28 Danielle 1

The first little peep hatched yesterday, and more hatched overnight. So far there are five tiny, baby quail chicks in the brooder. So fluffy!   Japanese quail, Coturnix japonica (not Coturnix coturnix – that’s the common quail from which the domesticated Japanese quail is derived), are a small, round bird kept for eggs, meat, and sometimes for their voices. I’m unsure about that last, since they’re not especially tuneful; they’re not a noisy bird, though, and I imagine their quiet chattering and the occasional trilling crow of the males could be a pleasant background noise.   Because quail are relatively […]