I would like to take this opportunity to thank my customers and wish them a very happy and healthy holiday season. My family and I feel blessed to have met so many wonderful people this year. We feel grateful to be in an area that appreciates the quality of local home grown food and we are excited about what the upcoming year may hold for us.
Around the Farm
Cold always brings a challenge for farmers. When the temps drop to single digits extra care must be taken. All of the animals get extra feed and bedding. We must check the livestock more often to make sure there are no problems. Ice on the waterers must be broken to ensure everybody gets adequate water. Steps need to be taken to ensure a tractor will always start when needed. Pipes need to be kept thawed out in the milking parlor. Little problems can easily turn into big problems when it is very cold outside. We work hard to avoid these problems.
It's absolutely amazing the job that a good sow can do. My last blog post told of an extremely disappointing farrowing. This week I have good news to tell about. I had another sow farrow and she has done an amazing job. She farrowed 3 days ago and she has managed to keep every single one of her piglets alive through single digit cold weather. She spent all day Saturday building this huge nest. I gave her lots of extra hay so she was happy with her nest. That night she proceeded to have 11 piglets. When I checked on her in the morning she had all of her piglets nestled between her belly and a big berm of hay. Normally when you approach a sow in her pen she will get up and come and see what you are doing. The sow knew that she had to keep her piglets warm so she didn't get up this time to see what I was up to. Later in the day when the temps had risen a bit she then got up to eat. After she had got up Mark saw her gently nudge her newborn piglets into a pile and cover them up with hay. She only gets up to eat and then she snuggles back down with her piglets to keep them warm. I'm so happy with the job she is doing!