Friday, March 16, 2007

The Animal List

I'm always curious what sorts of animals are homesteaders' favorites. For those of you with animals, which ones are the ones you'd just not want to do without?

Here's a quickie list of what animals I think I'd love someday. Perhaps it will change, be limited modified, etc.

But for now, here 'tis.

1. Irish Dexter Cattle,
for meat and sale, and possibly one to milk

2. Miniature (Guinea) Jersey,
to milk, and love, and did I mention love?? (Gosh, I love Jerseys)

3. Soay Sheep,
for so very very many reasons, the least of which is because I'm in love with them. Wool for the handspinning market, for sale, weed control, survival of the breed, and meat. I LOVE this breed!

4. Chickens,
layers of brown or colored eggs only. For mainly eggs, but some meat, thus dual purpose birds. And I need their poop for fertilizer once it composts.
1. Ameracaunas
2. Black Australorps
3. Buff Orpingtons
4. Partridge Rocks
5. Silver Laced Wyandottes
6. Golden Laced Wyandottes
7. Speckled Sussex
8. Black Jersey Giants

5. Great Pyrenees or other livestock dog, if needed. But I want a dog or two, regardless. I love them, and I don't feel safe without them.

6. Barn cats
to mooch treats, catch rodents, and be enthroned upon laps.

7. Minature donkey,
to adore, and to be a guard companion to the sheep.

8. Dwarf rabbits,
for adoring and for shuttling their poop to the garden.

9. Ducks,
a heritage breed. For beauty. And making life miserable for snakes. Maybe occasionally meat. Maybe.

10. Geese,
heritage breed, weeding and meat. And making life miserable for snakes.

11. Horse,
gentle one for riding. Preferred breed, Rocky Mountain.

12. Bees,
I love bees and really want them because there need to be more bees, and I'd love the pollenation benefits. And honey!

13. Wildebeest (Who Gnu??)
Just kidding. Just seeing if I put anyone to sleep...



farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

O.K---I would also take a water buffalo. For fresh mozzarella you know.
Sheep are fun to watch---and multiply quickly.
Cows are fun when they let you pet and love on them---less "skittish" than the sheep can be. Good milk!!
Dogs/cats---well everyone has their favorite reasons
Chickens---fresh eggs. Yum. Kill the rooster that crows under your window though (especially when it's six on saturday---he's not even suppose to crow then for heaven's sake)
Ducks---pom pom headed ones are funniest. Good eggs too.
Pigs---almost too smart to be dinner.
Wildebeast??---everything eats them! hahaha

farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

Horse: can't eat it (well unless you live in Europe) and they eat LOTS of grass. I do like to ride though :-)
Bees---They were too heavy---I couldn't lift them by myself once they filled the colony and had honey in there. Use the smallest size frames they make if you will be the sole lifter. I was a bit intimidated by them too..
Geese---NOISY---almost as much as guineas.
So there's my 2 cents worth (maybe not even worth that!)

shannon said...

After a few years on farming, we've found a nice balance here - we keep laying hens of all sorts of heavy breeds along with a few roosters to guard against hawks and a guinea hen to eat up flies in the barn. We milk two large breed dairy goats (had quite a flock of Nigerina Dwarf goats, but it takes just as long to milk a mini, and we weren't thrilled with their yield), keep several beehives of Russians, and two pigs who turn over sod wherever we want to make the newest veggie bed, and of course our two barn cats and two big house dogs :)

Robbyn said...

Monica - what, no yak?? heh heh
What a great list! So when I get some animals, I'll be pestering you for advice. I think cows and horses are my all time favorites so far. There's something about cow eyes and faces...and noses...I know, that's weird...I even like the smell of cows and horses lol
Looks like you're busy with shearing...I didnt know icelandics could be raised in the south, but it looks like theyre versatile. Always loving your blog!

Shannon, welcome! I peeked at your site and you have a wonderful farm going...such an interesting blog site. I'm sorry you lost some bees, and the pigs. I'd never thought of pigs for turning the ground. we don't eat pork and I'd not considered them...there's something to rethink :) I don't know one bee type from another, so there's something else I'd like to research. I'd love to hear your expertise -- I'm learning so much from everyone's expertise.

Thanks, you two :)