Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Ban children from farm chores?

Fortunately this was killed before it saw life,  but the very fact that it was even proposed is concerning.  This act would have banned children honest work on farms,  even their own family farm!

It is totally ludicrous to prevent children from working.  What our next generation needs is a good work ethic,  desire to support themselves , and an appreciation for God's creation.  Making all that illegal would be a horrible legacy to pass on to our children. 

This gives serious doubt to the sanity of those in charge of our nation.

Portable brooder for ducks

With the ducks arriving today,  we need a place to put them.  The barn brooder is full of baby turkeys so where do you put 150 ducklings?  We chose to convert one portable pen to a portable brooder.

2 sheets of plywood on a 4x4 runner  with a couple 2x4 support runners and we have a solid wood floor. Add a heating system and there's a completely safe portable brooder. 

I had plenty of help placing nails and screws so it took a little longer than expected,  but finished in just a few hours.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Power outage, but we are prepared

We are in the first major power outage of 2012. Fortunately,  no one is suffering.  Thanks to the great deal last year on a new diesel generator,  we are able to power everything necessary.  The baby turkeys are snug under their low wattage brooder heaters safe and warm.

These heaters,  from brisnea, are great.  They pull so little electricity that it is easy to provide backup power.  I am convinced that they are better for the birds too.


We didn't loose a single baby turkey this time,  which is amazing since power was not restored until about 4 am. We actually had a fun time with the kids teaching them about oil lamps and exploring the life of those who created America.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Presentation at Table Rock Kiwanis

Little Sprouts had the honor of presenting at the weekly meeting of the Table Rock Kiwanis yesterday.
for those not familiar with the Kiwanis, I encourage you to learn about this group. They are a nice group of individuals coming together to support the community in a variety of ways.  We appreciate their efforts.

The presentation went well, with a good amount of questions and answer at the end, even involving the older children. Its always great when the children have an opportunity to share about your life and our farm at events like these. These are the moments that cement the value of what we are doing in their young minds and hearts.

If you have a group that would like to learn about sustainable farming at a family scale, please dont hesitate to ask. We are available to spread the word about what, how, and why we are doing this.

Here is a nice thank you we received from the group (reprinted with permission of course):


Thanks so much for sharing with us at Table Rock Kiwanis.  I had so many people thank me for inviting you to the meeting.  It was obvious that the message you brought was something everyone wanted to hear.

Thank all of your lovely family for joining us.  They are delightful and it is obvious that you are all bringing great joy to the world!


Linda McClellan

First turkeys of the season hatch!

Right on time, the first turkeys of the 2012 season popped out of their shells yesterday! It;s always amazing how nature works... all 24 turkeys hatched out within hours of each other after 28 days incubating. The consistency is truly amazing.

There will be a steady stream of hatchings now for the next month, ranging everywhere from 1 to 60 every other day (60 in one day will be quite interesting indeed!)

A surprise was the appearance of a yellow turkey poult in the bunch. Thats right, pure yellow. Narragansett poults are always white, grey, black with a yellow underside but this little fellow is pure yellow all over. We thought he was a chicken at first, but no all the eggs hatched from are turkey eggs. IT will be fun to see what he turns into as he matures.

Feel free to stop by and visit the little birds anytime. It is quite a sight to see!

Fertilized Heritage Turkey eggs for sale

We are pleased to announce that we have enough fertilized turkey eggs now to offer them for sale nationwide.  Raise your own thanksgiving and christmas Birds!

These eggs are the Narragansett breed, the largest, best tasting, and most self sufficient birds we have seen. This is the only breed we raise now.

So far the eggs are about 90% fertile and about 80% hatch rate. They can be incubated easily at home with simple inexpensive equipment. We can provide assistance with hatching or raising.

PRice is $4 per egg, with quantity discounts available.

Dont delay! These birds need about 6 months to reach maturity for processing.

(they also make great pets!)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Fertilized Heritage Turkey Eggs Available Now

Would you like to raise your own turkeys this year?  You can enjoy the entire experience including hatching with fertilized heritage turkey eggs from Little Sprouts! We now have fertilized eggs available for immediate sale.

These eggs are from pure bred Narragansett turkeys, our second generation on farm.  These turkeys are the best tasting and largest of the heritage breeds. They are also very calm yet capable of raising young and protecting themselves from predators.  It is our breed of choice.

The eggs have been running about 90% fertile in our own incubator. The eggs we have available are within 1 week of laying and can be shipped anywhere.

Cost is $5 per egg, with volume discounts available.

Dont miss out! Now is the time to hatch for thanksgiving and christmas!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Visit to Amish camel dairy

What an experience this visit was!  Our family has a new appreciation for the Amish lifestyle. 

More details to come on the camel dairy and what we learned.  It was a very valuable trip.  We will be able to make a decision as to bringing these animals to southern Oregon soon.

Stay tuned!

Her is a quick picture of the newest baby camel at their farm,  genus a white camel!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Second incubator installed and filled

Our second incubator arrived today.  This gives us room to incubate 200 turkeys or 400 chickens per month.  The first set of 100 turkeys are in and about half cooked.  The second set went in today.  If all goes well,  we are looking forward to a good thanksgiving season.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

4000+ blog hit last month

The Little Sprouts Blog has passed another milestone. Last month (March) we passed 4000 visits.  The final number came to 4048 to be exact.

It is both amazing and humbling to see so many people interested in what we are doing. Visitors to out website come in from all over the world, and an amazing amount are also local. Often  it is people just starting out down the same path we followed to get here today.  The number of new farms starting up is quite encouraging!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sunday- still a day of rest.

As I watch the sunrise on a Sunday, it seems a good time to share one of our farm rules that we have found invaluable.
Sunday is a special day at Little Sprouts, because it is the only day not filled with projects.Yes as a family and a farm we honor the Sabbath as a day of rest. We don't do business on Sunday, don't work on projects, and use the time as a sacred day.
Our rule is we only do chores that are necessary (everyone must eat ), and only do work necessary to save a life (life threatening situations do happen often ). We will entertain visitors on occasion, since we view the farm as our God given mission, and our visitors as friends. But that is the limit.
We have found great benefit in following this rule.  It keeps our family grounded despite the season and workload,  it stresses the higher purpose of life by keeping things in perspective, it allow our tried bodies to heal and our souls to seek balance,  and it allows us to have non work oriented family time for Bible study and spiritual reflection.  All of this has built a steady foundation for our family and the farm. 
If you are starting a farm of your own,  or thinking about it,  I strongly encourage you to honor the Sabbath. You will find it much more beneficial than an eyes day of work and projects. God really did know what he was doing by resting the seventh day. 

Sussex start laying!

We found the first Sussex eggs last night!  7 little brown eggs as pretty as can be.  The surprise is that they are laying about a month early and with no extra light!  The birds arrived first week of October,  which makes them only 5 months old.  I'll count this as a testament to both heritage breeds and nutrition dense feed with free ranging.
This means two things.. ..
1: we now  have an extra set of eggs available for those on the waiting list. The eggs will be small for the first month or two.  but incredibly nutritious.  This flock should produce about 40 to 60 dozen per delivery.
2: I have a new emergency project!  We have not finished the nesting  boxes. The eggs were found on the ground,  so of course we won't sell them until we get proper nesting boxes built.
Never a dull moment around here!