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Goose Egg

Colonel's Blog, Earthdate 16 Feb 2023...

Hey Y'all!

Happy Thursday from Air2Ground Farms! We had some pretty strong thunderstorms overnight as a cold front passed through the area. Our morning temp of 52 degrees will drop throughout the day until it hits freezing around sunset and continues to drop to the low 20s by tomorrow morning. What a contrast from the 71 degree sunny weather yesterday afternoon. We were able to make it to the lake yesterday and spent 2 hours relaxing. The top pic is Shelley and I just riding around a bit. The second pic is Shelley and the boat as we put it in the water at the ramp. The third pic is Shelley practicing her reeling skills--we didn't take the time to really try to catch fish, just going through the motions in order to relax. We were away from the farm for a total of 3 1/2 hours and this morning we laughed that we were gone for less than 4 hours yesterday and we are now 3 weeks behind in our farm projects! The time together relaxing and doing something we enjoy was well worth it. Teeter, the guard goose, gifted us with two eggs over the last two days! She laid them inside the chickshaw on the floor and we missed the first one but found both yesterday evening. The bottom pic is a large chicken egg in front of the goose egg. We all mention a goose egg when we describe a bump on someone's nugget, but how many of us have ever seen just how big a goose egg is? Shelley made a trip to town yesterday to deliver milk and eggs while I wrote the blog. All of the animals were good this morning, a much better start to the day than yesterday. The expectant cow is off by herself in the woods this morning, so we believe she will calf very soon. Her last calf and that calf's buddy were standing about 10 yards away watching what was going on. It reminded us of family in the waiting room! As soon as I publish this, we will go gather the cow herd into the pens to separate the now motherless calf so we can bring her to the house to hang out with the milk cows. We will likely castrate the little bull calf while they are in the pens turning him into a steer that will eventually be beef in someone's freezer. If that all goes well, we will make some yogurt and cheese this afternoon.

I really appreciate the comments on the blog yesterday! It is really difficult to know how and what to cull when you are just starting out. That said, we are learning to see the signs, especially with the sheep, that things aren't quite right. As we try to implement "Do better, suck less" with culling the sheep, our decision is what to do with them. We understand the importance of, and need for, the livestock sale barn, but we don't really want to go in that direction. The beef cows and sheep are either producing babies that will be meat for someone's freezer or are on their way to someone's freezer. So our decision is what to do with the cull animal that isn't thriving in our context. Our gut tells us to process that animal on-farm for our own freezer. That decision entails a lot of additional work that requires advanced planning. I mentioned yesterday that there were a few ewes that aren't looking great. We have 2-3 that are old and haven't recovered their body condition after lambing last year. We know that even if they have lambs this year, there is no way they can produce enough milk for the lambs to thrive and we will end up with low birth weight bottle lambs. So, we currently have the perfect opportunity to practice culling...just not today...

We are currently editing our next video about our milking routine. Shelley's YouTube Short today is: Piglets Suppertime in their Training Pen. Check it out and subscribe; we are up to 78 subscribers!! If you like our videos or shorts, share them on your social media pages.

Local Farm Report for 15 Feb 2023:


22 Chicken eggs

6 Duck eggs

2 Goose eggs

5 Gallons of milk


4 Dozen chicken eggs

1 Dozen duck eggs

3 Gallons of milk

Farm losses:

1 old, open, and ornery ewe

1 old, really cool, beef cow (actually she was an old dairy cow, holstein/jersey cross, that we used as a nurse cow for any new moms that weren't making enough milk)

Cheers! Rich & Shelley

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