Results for tag "geese"

snowmaggedon, again!

We’re having the most crazy spring here. It is May 2nd, and we woke up to over a FOOT of SNOW!!!!!!!! 

 

Just a week ago, we decided we to delay the start date of our CSA. Because the soil is too wet to work, we are seriously a month behind with all the field work required to begin growing in the garden. We had sugar snap peas sprouting in the garden on April 2nd last year, and this year we STILL can’t even WALK in the garden without sinking up to our calves! Once this nonsense is over, we’re be ready to go….we have many thousands of plants started indoors, ready and waiting to be moved outside.

Learning to grow food in this changing climate is going to be a struggle for gardener and farmer alike. The growing season in the Northern Midwest is short enough already, and now with the highly variable weather extremes on either end of the season, we need to choose breeds and varieties which are resilient and can handle these fluctuations.

Luckily we have the most hardy heritage ducks!   ducks going out in the May 2nd snowstorm!   Our Khaki Campbells  are laying their decadent eggs in the early morning and enjoying going outside every day, even in a snowstorm! We’re excited to have just added the Wedge Co-op in Minneapolis as one of the stores selling our delicious duck eggs! We love Co-ops! And boy, do we love our duck eggs….

2 over-easy peppered duck eggs on top of creamy grits cooked in chicken broth, with sauteed mushrooms, onions and pinto beans. YUMMMM.

Fried Duck eggs with goat cheddar and sauerkraut on toast- Our new favorite combo. The trick for a perfect fried duck egg is using medium heat, and for not too long. Duck eggs have more protein and require gentle cooking, but reward you with a luscious texture and a divine, rich flavor!

The geese were moved out of the hoophouse last week, in anticipation of spring. We really thought that would be the very last of the snow for the year!

We just got the first three goslings from their eggs, hatched by a friend. Here’s a little video clip: the new goslings We hope to have quite a few more goslings from our goose experience, but hatching these eggs in an incubator is proving to be very very difficult. The next angle is to allow the mother geese to set up their own nests and incubate their own eggs. We’ll see how that works out. So far they’ve made elaborate nests out of hay and pine needles, but after this snowstorm….we’re not sure how it will go.

Gaggles of Geese

On Valentine’s Day Eve, we brought 2 gaggles of geese home, from Botan Anderson’s Mystic Prairie flock. We’d been thinking of adding a goose breeding flock to our farm for some time, but it just hadn’t happened yet. The breeds are Pilgrim and Toulouse, and we couldn’t be more excited! For the first week, the geese have been getting adjusted to us & their new home, which is the hoophouse until the pastures are clear of snow. They are gearing up for the spring breeding season now that they’ve settled in. Geese only lay a small number of eggs in the spring, so we were lucky to bring them home right before this began. There is not much information available about raising geese in larger numbers than a couple pairs or so, so we’re learning as we go. Thankfully, observation is a very powerful learning tool. Animals give plenty of clues about their state of being, if you just pay attention.

We’re passionate about raising animals on pasture, giving them a natural and good life outdoors with fresh air, sun and a diverse diet. The most amazing thing about geese is, like rabbits, they can eat and grow almost 100% on grass. We’re care about grass-based meat because it is the most ecologically sound choice for our planet. When animals eat grass, they not only utilize something we cannot eat, they harvest it themselves and enjoy this natural behavior in the process, and while grazing, they help build the soil by preserving and stimulating the turf. If more farms preserved grasslands by raising animals on pasture, we wouldn’t be losing so much topsoil from our fertile farmlands.

A goose will usually lay between 20-50 eggs over the course of 2-3 months. Our plan is to incubate the first eggs, and then let the mothers build up their nests and hopefully hatch out goslings. We are excited to be one of the few local farms raising real pastured goose. Grocery-store goose is usually raised indoors in dark barns, stimulating fast growth, but depriving these intelligent & noble birds of a natural, healthy life.

As we continue on our farming journey here at LTD, we’re realizing that one of our major missions is to “be the change we wish to see in the world.” We do not want animals to be subjected to factory farm conditions ever, anywhere. While we cannot stop it, we can provide an alternative – we can raise animals how they ought to be raised and we can know we are doing our part in fighting the good fight. Our customers truly complete the cycle by purchasing our products. Thank you for your support of our farm!