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Monday, November 15, 2010

Turkey Tuesday - Winter on the Farm

Another blogger asked me recently if winter was a little less busy for us on the farm.

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In short, no.

Because our birds are in buildings, turkey growing goes on as usual no matter how cold it gets.  There are a few differences, though.

#1.  It’s easier to keep them warm than keep them cool.  However…

#2.  It costs more because we use more propane to heat the buildings.  We actually have to heat the brooder (baby bird house) year round to keep it warm enough, but it obviously costs more to heat a barn when it’s 10 degrees out than when it’s 70!

#3.  Hubby’s chore clothes come into the kitchen.  In the summer, he changes in the unheated entryway of our house, and that’s also where he keeps his chore clothes.  But in the winter, he refuses to change out there, so the clothes leave a longer trail of sawdust bedding.P1070205

#4.  The clothes are bigger.  Coveralls…two or three pairs hanging around all the time.  These things take up a lot of room, and are not really easy to wash.

#5.  Sometimes we (Bart) has to put heat tape on the pipes that carry feed from the bins into the buildings.  Otherwise, it freezes up, and that’s a bad thing.

#6.  The sun goes down earlier, which means we actually see more of Bart in the evenings.

#7.  The biggest difference:  instead of mowing, we’re moving snow.  Last year was brutal.  We have about a 1/4 mile long lane that has to be cleared to the brooder house, plus huge driveways/lots around the other 4 buildings.  These HAVE to be kept clear for feed trucks, propane trucks, and semis to get through.  And it takes a LONG time.  There were also a few days last year that hubby dug out the road to the highway so that I could get to work, and he dug out the neighbors more than once.  The near-record snowfall totals last winter made our first snowy season on the farm kind of rough.

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(A snow pile at one of our finisher sites.  Behind the snow, you can see the brooder in the distance, and our house to the right.)

 

So, no winter vacations for us!

13 comments:

  1. Lots of work! We were one of those neighbors that had to have someone with a tractor dig us out several times last winter. I'm hoping we don't get so much snow this year.

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  2. Geez... it is never ending! Thank you for what you do. It is a lot of work with very little appreciation.

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  3. That last photo is a so beautiful and the middle one just melts my heart. It is a busy life, but a precious one, eh?

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  4. Ah, farm life. I've seen my parents' propane bill and it wasn't pretty. We crossed a house off the list when we were looking to buy because it had propane. I bet you're hoping for less snow this year!

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  5. Ugh, last winter really was brutal. While I love the snow here, I don't really like having to shovel it. I'm hoping since we had such a nice fall this year, that this winter will be nice to us, too! I guess we'll see. :)

    ~Chelsea

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  6. I've always thought it would be so fun to live on a farm, but I see that I glamorize it. We moved away from all of the cold weather, and I don't think I could ever move back :)

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  7. i know farm life is hard but it looks so charming!

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  8. I hear farmers are the most hard working people you will ever meet! So much to do to run a farm. I'm hoping we don't get as much snow this year!!

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  9. Good post!
    Most people don't think about what goes into getting their food to the grocery store!

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  10. Great post. This is exactly how it is on our pig farm. No time for rest when there is livestock on the farm no matter the time of year.

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  11. So interesting to learn a bit about raising turkeys. I'd love to have a farm of some kind but in small ways, I don't know if I could do it.
    How have you been?

    Hugs,
    Jami

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  12. I've never lived where it snows, so I love reading about people's winter adventures in the snow--this is great :)

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  13. Wow!! I bet you guys are always ready for Spring!! It is beautiful though and oh how I would love to live on a farm one day. Probably will never happen but a girl can dream. :)

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