Farming Thread

john_Jea

Robin
Other Christian
A basic video about livestock. He breaks livestock down into different categories, those which are easy to raise, medium, and hard mode.

Easy: Chickens, Ducks, Rabbits, Fish, Worms
Medium: Pigs, Min Jersey Cows, Turkeys/Quail
Hard: Sheep, Goats, Beef, Dairy, Horses, Alpacas

I'd be interested to hear any experiences people have had with these different livestock



I don't have in depth knowledge of most of these but I will say that that horses can be both be way easier than Cows and sheep or way harder depending on what you are going to do with them.

If you plan on training a horse for riding that takes way more time and skill than raising animals for food, however if you plan on raising horses for meat ( which most of the world apparently doesn't do) or breed them to sell, that is way easier than sheep, cows and I would argue goats since they are harder to keep in a fence.

Horses bite grass with their teeth while cows rip grasses up by wrapping there tongue around them, making horses more efficient grazers that can start grazing earlier in the growing cycle as the can bite closer to the root.
If the horses are free to run around you just have to feed them in the top of winter and then walk around them every now and then so they don't become wild.

Horses are also not that daring and its unlikely that a horse will attack you.

I would also like to add that most difficulties that come with the animals on that list won't scale up with numbers, it will be more time consuming but not harder, if anything you will become more efficient and develope better systems for said chores.
 

Pointy Elbows

Kingfisher
Orthodox
I think it really boils down to the price of petroleum, which I believe affects the price of DEF (i.e. adblue, bluedef, etc.) and fertilizer. As NickK stated, this could be part of the NWO to take control of everything. Small agriculture is an easy target to takeout, via price manipulation, supply-chain disruptions, petrol disruptions, etc. I think the goal maybe to force small operators to sell out to Big AG, due to economic pressure.

You can think of small ag as being the canary-in-coal-mine. Economics is real, and we have to face it. What happens to us, can happen in other mom-and-pop industries.

This may be a little black-pilled, but here is some reality. If you are thinking you can purchase a piece of land, then become a self-sufficient ag producer, there is a 99% chance you will fail. Economics is real. If you could get a loan, to purchase land, equipment, stock or seeds, the margins are so low on what you produce, you will not be able to pay the loan, much less support yourself and your family.

Now, here is some red-pill observations. Like I said, I am the end-of-the-line, in a multi-generational business. More than a century of capital accumulation. Everything is bought and paid for. I can walk away from the ag business, but keep our capital. That can sustain me and my family and friends, for a long time. The really good news is there are a lot of people in the same position (especially in Texas). The thought of building a economic alternative to the current system is conceivable to me. Just go back to the way things were done, prior to WWII. That includes bringing production back to this country.
planomustang, how do you estimate you can sustain your family for a long time? Do you have a ratio of acres:livestock pair you benchmark from? As you are in north central Texas, do you have enough rainfall to keep a sustenance garden, with enough acreage left for livestock? Do you irrigate? I'm curious what is your method to come to this conclusion.

I'm no Aggie, but I've been around it and interested in it my entire life. I may be able to get into a very small acreage farm for such purpose. Say, 5-12 acres with good irrigation, at least for a hay crop. Would that be enough to feed a family with a large garden, keep decent livestock (I don't care if it is chickens or cows), and cover property taxes (have to keep those guys away)?

Do you grow pecans or other nut trees? What are your thoughts on that? It seems like a decent way to passively use land, but it precludes other uses. Or does it?

Specifically, I'm interested in sustenance farming. I have no illusions of making it in a commercial operation.
 

Pointy Elbows

Kingfisher
Orthodox
A bit off topic but I had a question for people who know better. My father has two old Ford tractors, one from the 50’s and one from the 80’s, both run great and have all the toys. He would like me to sell them as he has downsized his farming and doesn’t need two commercial tractors anymore. I’m having trouble finding comps and he keeps telling me to put them up for these outrageous prices saying that the old analog tractors are in huge demand fetching big prices.

Any truth in that?
I've attended two auctions in the last month with a 20+ ag tractors on the block. Auctioneers claim some of these old ag-tractors are going all the way to the Middle East. Who knows if that is all true, but I priced these tractors before auction against various websites and they sold at surprisingly high prices. We bid on 5 tractors and didn't get one.
,
To answer your question: yes, from my limited experience. I think these guys are shooting for simple, rugged machines, with long-lasting repair part supply lines. That was what I was shooting for, and I got outbid on each one by a far shot. Maybe your old man is on to something.
 

planomustang

Pigeon
Agnostic
planomustang, how do you estimate you can sustain your family for a long time? Do you have a ratio of acres:livestock pair you benchmark from? As you are in north central Texas, do you have enough rainfall to keep a sustenance garden, with enough acreage left for livestock? Do you irrigate? I'm curious what is your method to come to this conclusion.

I'm no Aggie, but I've been around it and interested in it my entire life. I may be able to get into a very small acreage farm for such purpose. Say, 5-12 acres with good irrigation, at least for a hay crop. Would that be enough to feed a family with a large garden, keep decent livestock (I don't care if it is chickens or cows), and cover property taxes (have to keep those guys away)?

Do you grow pecans or other nut trees? What are your thoughts on that? It seems like a decent way to passively use land, but it precludes other uses. Or does it?

Specifically, I'm interested in sustenance farming. I have no illusions of making it in a commercial operation.
Pointy,
You ask a lot of good questions, but I don't have the time to provide a reasoned/thoughtful answer at this time. I will get back to your questions, in a week or so. Be patient.

Let me explain, my current circumstances. I live 84 miles from the family ranch. During the spring and summer, I spend about 50% of my time, split between the two places. During the winter and early spring, we have to feed cows. Hay and corn cubes. My 84 yo father is now blind, and he cannot do this anymore, so I have to be at the ranch at least four days a week, just to maintain the feeding schedule. I do other work, but feeding cows is the driver for how I plan my days.

I am headed out tomorrow, just to feed, water, and move hay. I pre-stage hay, so that my father can let cows get to hay, by just opening gates. I will spend tomorrow, just buying time over the next week. I will still do work on my barndo, and I am close to having a really comfy living quarters, that is not hard to heat, even in the teens.

The "strategies" part of your question is what I have to think about. My strategy is based on the same strategy that my great-grandfather had. He raised his children, and his children's children, through the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, on 660 acres of land. I know how he did it, and I know why my grandfather would not let me shoot squirrels. They did not have electricity or running water.

Randy
 

Pointy Elbows

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Pointy,
You ask a lot of good questions, but I don't have the time to provide a reasoned/thoughtful answer at this time. I will get back to your questions, in a week or so. Be patient.

Let me explain, my current circumstances. I live 84 miles from the family ranch. During the spring and summer, I spend about 50% of my time, split between the two places. During the winter and early spring, we have to feed cows. Hay and corn cubes. My 84 yo father is now blind, and he cannot do this anymore, so I have to be at the ranch at least four days a week, just to maintain the feeding schedule. I do other work, but feeding cows is the driver for how I plan my days.

I am headed out tomorrow, just to feed, water, and move hay. I pre-stage hay, so that my father can let cows get to hay, by just opening gates. I will spend tomorrow, just buying time over the next week. I will still do work on my barndo, and I am close to having a really comfy living quarters, that is not hard to heat, even in the teens.

The "strategies" part of your question is what I have to think about. My strategy is based on the same strategy that my great-grandfather had. He raised his children, and his children's children, through the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, on 660 acres of land. I know how he did it, and I know why my grandfather would not let me shoot squirrels. They did not have electricity or running water.

Randy
No hurries, brother. Sounds like you've got plenty on your plate!
 

planomustang

Pigeon
Agnostic
A bit off topic but I had a question for people who know better. My father has two old Ford tractors, one from the 50’s and one from the 80’s, both run great and have all the toys. He would like me to sell them as he has downsized his farming and doesn’t need two commercial tractors anymore. I’m having trouble finding comps and he keeps telling me to put them up for these outrageous prices saying that the old analog tractors are in huge demand fetching big prices.

Any truth in that?
If you can, sell the 80's model, at inflated price, or keep it as a hedge against inflation. It will be worth twice the price in 4 years, given the current state of affairs. Knowing the model would be good to know, in terms of pricing and demand.

The older ford tractor could bring some decent money, even if it is from the 50's. Without knowing the model, I am not much help.
 

FrancisK

Pelican
Catholic
Gold Member
If you can, sell the 80's model, at inflated price, or keep it as a hedge against inflation. It will be worth twice the price in 4 years, given the current state of affairs. Knowing the model would be good to know, in terms of pricing and demand.

The older ford tractor could bring some decent money, even if it is from the 50's. Without knowing the model, I am not much help.


It’s a 87 Ford 2110 with 200 hours on it, the one from the 50’s I have no idea and I think my father is keeping it regardless that thing is an unstoppable tank that never has an issue that can be fixed with a $5 easily found part or just rigged up with some scrap.
 

planomustang

Pigeon
Agnostic
It’s a 87 Ford 2110 with 200 hours on it,
Low hour tractor is good. Unfortunately, it is gas powered, not diesel. 38 hp, is in the lower end of tractor power. This would be a good utility tractor, for running small brush-hogs or rear-end tillers. Nothing for actual hard work. PM me. If this is close, I could make you an offer.

Sounds like your father and mine are built from the same plan. Keeps 60 year old tractors, regardless if they work or not. I have a 1963 JD Model A and a 1963 JD Model 730, I want to get rid of. Both of them drove, to where they died.
 

planomustang

Pigeon
Agnostic
The cost of fertilizer may upend the ag business this year. We typically pay $380 to $420 a ton, for hay field fertilizer. Right now, it is a little over $800 a ton, and our supplier expects prices to be over $1200 a ton, this summer.

Typically, we put out 250 pounds, per acre. So a ton will cover 8 acres. We have 100 acres of dedicated hay pastures, that usually produce about 400 round bales. If we were to do our normal fertilizer routine, it would cost about $15K. At 400 bales, we will have $37.50 cost per bale, just in fertilizer. That does not include the cost of fuel, labor, etc.

Right now, decent coastal bermuda hay goes for $50-$60 per bale. Next year, I would not be surprised to see hay well over $100 per bale, due to increased costs and reduced production. This is just the tip of the iceberg, for the far reaching affects.
 

NoMoreTO

Hummingbird
Catholic
The cost of fertilizer may upend the ag business this year. We typically pay $380 to $420 a ton, for hay field fertilizer. Right now, it is a little over $800 a ton, and our supplier expects prices to be over $1200 a ton, this summer.

Typically, we put out 250 pounds, per acre. So a ton will cover 8 acres. We have 100 acres of dedicated hay pastures, that usually produce about 400 round bales. If we were to do our normal fertilizer routine, it would cost about $15K. At 400 bales, we will have $37.50 cost per bale, just in fertilizer. That does not include the cost of fuel, labor, etc.

Right now, decent coastal bermuda hay goes for $50-$60 per bale. Next year, I would not be surprised to see hay well over $100 per bale, due to increased costs and reduced production. This is just the tip of the iceberg, for the far reaching affects.

I sell hay and have a little too much inventory at the moment. Hoping to sell alot over these next 2 months.

One thing I have noticed is 2 of the guys I know who do hay have recently lost acreage to row crops such as Corn/Soybeans which are paying much better. My neighbour basically rents his land out for more money then I am making selling hay at the moment. It's a little discouraging, but over time the hay market should equalize as hay fields move to more profitable crops.

Of course guys with their own animals and gear will continue to make hay, but they might not be trying to sell as much.
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Ostrich
Orthodox
A basic video about livestock. He breaks livestock down into different categories, those which are easy to raise, medium, and hard mode.

Easy: Chickens, Ducks, Rabbits, Fish, Worms
Medium: Pigs, Min Jersey Cows, Turkeys/Quail
Hard: Sheep, Goats, Beef, Dairy, Horses, Alpacas

I'd be interested to hear any experiences people have had with these different livestock



I am surprised by this. I thought that goats would be way easier.
 

NoMoreTO

Hummingbird
Catholic
Sold 75 Round Bales today. The weather was good for it, no snow or rain or wind, just above freezing. All in all a good day and happy to keep things moving.

I still have a fair bit of inventory, and while I want to recover my costs I do wonder if these bales will be worth more next year. Diesel is up, Land Rent is up and guys are losing their hay fields to corn/beans, everything else is up. I Sold at $0.08/lb CAD. A good price for the buyer in my opinion for decent alfalfa hay, from 1st, 2nd, 3rd cut.

There was alot of rain in my area this summer so there's lots of hay out there yet. Hopefully prices bounce but it's a job shipping it all so I have to chip away at it when I can. I'm only selling on saturdays because I work Monday to Friday. As I'm new to the game, it's important to build a customer base too.
 
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john_Jea

Robin
Other Christian
Which is an easier animal to raise — a mini Jersey or an Alpine goat?

I live in Canada, if that helps at all. Winters get pretty bad.

Goats are easier than cows, especially if you are a beginner. The nutritional needs of milking cows are more unforgiving than of goats, you can feed goats pretty much any thing to keep them alive but should probably have them in better feed if you plan on milking them. With that said goats are bastards animals, no fence will hold them.

I would start out with the goats if you have no experience with keeping livestock, or even sheep as you wont have the problem of them escaping. A plus for goats is that they can rid your land of shrubs. I have heard that it takes around five years to start to like the things.
 

Cavalier

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Goats are easier than cows, especially if you are a beginner. The nutritional needs of milking cows are more unforgiving than of goats, you can feed goats pretty much any thing to keep them alive but should probably have them in better feed if you plan on milking them. With that said goats are bastards animals, no fence will hold them.

I would start out with the goats if you have no experience with keeping livestock, or even sheep as you wont have the problem of them escaping. A plus for goats is that they can rid your land of shrubs. I have heard that it takes around five years to start to like the things.
I liked goats from the very start.
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Ostrich
Orthodox
Goats are easier than cows, especially if you are a beginner. The nutritional needs of milking cows are more unforgiving than of goats, you can feed goats pretty much any thing to keep them alive but should probably have them in better feed if you plan on milking them. With that said goats are bastards animals, no fence will hold them.

I would start out with the goats if you have no experience with keeping livestock, or even sheep as you wont have the problem of them escaping. A plus for goats is that they can rid your land of shrubs. I have heard that it takes around five years to start to like the things.

Thank you. I was wondering this because I had heard that goats can be escape artists, and that they also face unique medical problems. They might also eat poisonous berries and what not.

My plan is to start with chickens and then goats.
 

Cavalier

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Thank you. I was wondering this because I had heard that goats can be escape artists, and that they also face unique medical problems. They might also eat poisonous berries and what not.

My plan is to start with chickens and then goats.
Chickens are the easiest. Raising lamb for personal consumption is a good start. Just buy weaned lambs in the spring and raise them on pasture until the fall.
 
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