Transitions


Dogs at rest…


…and in motion.

Low 26째F, High 38째F, Sunny.

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About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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9 Responses to Transitions

  1. IslandLife Farms says:

    Fine Blog! It’s so great to track the activities on another fellow farm. We’ve been thinking of getting chicks, but are concerned about keeping them safe and warm over the winter. Any tips? Please keep up with the excellent posts and photos!

  2. This photo of the dogs resting on the snow is really beautiful!

  3. Thanks! The biggest trick with the chicks is providing them protection from drafts. We get cold winters (-45째F) and high winds. We have a sheltered area that is low and protected by the hill, trees and house. We then build a hay bale house of some sort each year for the sensitive animals. The snow covers it and it becomes cozy inside.

    For the chicks in particular, we us a sheet of 22″ tall metal flashing to make a ring around the chick area. We built a hood out of foil-bubble-bubble-foil and then their lights go inside that. That gives them protection from the drafts and reflects radiant heat back down to them.

    Another important thing is to not clean out the bedding all winter long. Instead let it build up, just keep adding more and more hay or wood shavings. This creates a warm decomposing bed for them to walk on that is very comfortable. If you had sufficient carbon (hay or wood) then the nitrogen (ammonia) is absorbed (and saved for your garden) so it doesn’t stink. If it stinks, add more carbon.

    Good luck!

    -Walter

  4. Deb says:

    Nice looking dogs! The one in front looks a lot like Togo, my husky.

  5. KSMILKMAID says:

    Hi,
    First time here. What an awesome blog. Love the pix. It is encouraging to see others work with chicks in the winter too. We also got 100 from MM and are hoping they will lay by spring.

  6. Lené Gary says:

    What beautiful dogs you have. :)

  7. patina says:

    the motion photo is stellar, a painting come alive.

  8. Evelyn says:

    -45F??!?!?!!!
    If it ever gets that cold in Missouri… I'm evacuating! I admit it… I'm a cold wuse! After 5 generations in Calif… anyone would be!
    It makes me feel much better about the coming winter w/ the pigs tho. This will be our first winter w/ pigs & we're kinda nervous about keeping them warm. They are young yet, 5+ months, so I'm thinking that they wont' have the fat layer to protect them. Our Farm gets down to around the teensF at night in January. They'll have lots of hay to make nests, a section of the barn if they want it & the woods if they prefer to sleep there. There are plenty of places to get out of the wind, so we're hoping that'll be enough. There are 4 of them, 2 gilts, a barrow & a younger boar. They're getting along well now, so I'm sure they'll huddle for warmth if they get cold.
    Do you think we've done enough? Or should we work on getting a better shelter?
    As I'm sure you can tell, I went thru the posts that seemed to give specific info, now I'm working my way thru from the beginning to pickup what I missed. I'm hoping to work at least a month a day. That's why I'm responding to old posts.

  9. Fortunately the last two winters have been relatively warm, not getting much below -20째F. I was quite happy with that. Sounds like you’re getting things well setup, Evelyn. Moisture may be more of an issue than bitter cold where you are. Do what you can to make sure water doesn’t pool around the pigs, get in their bedding, etc. Add plenty of dry hay, straw, shavings, etc. The one advantage of hay over the other bedding materials is they can also eat it.

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