Adding Mini Cows to our Homestead

While I’ve been away taking a break from life.

I’ve acquired two of the sweetest mini cows.

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Ferdinand & Clarabelle.

They arrived home on November 8th.  I used an Essential Oil concoction with Lavender Essential Oil to make their ride a little less overwhelming.  They were after all both being removed from their Mama’s for the first time.  I will say they were pretty calm and relaxed considering.

To be honest for the months leading up to their arrival there was a phase where I begged and pleaded with my husband to reconsider the arrival of these mini cows.

Fast forward almost a month later and I couldn’t be more in love.  In a few years when they breed we will be able to get our own fresh daily milk.  I am excited at the idea of providing ourselves with a little more sustainability.

After a lot of research we decided on the Mini Belted Galloway  breed known for their hardiness since we happen to live in the arctic some days.  They are feed efficient, and naturally polled.  For the inexperienced that just means in simple terms the bull does not have horns naturally.

I’ll be honest the bull is in fact the sweetest.  He’s like an enormous dog with a hoarse raspy moooooo that loves apples and carrots.

Both greet me each day with such enthusiasm and the sweetest cow faces.

Clarabelle is a little more reserved, but being an introvert myself I don’t fault her one bit.  In time she will come around.

Part of our homesteading journey was to get animals that would give back to us in some way.  Provide us with a service.  For now they eat hay (and not that much I might add) and they help eat the green waste around our homestead.

I love that they aren’t full size.  It makes handling them, feeding them, and space requirements much easier to handle.  Considering I barely know a thing about cow ownership it’s going pretty flawless.  Even with a mild escape a few weeks back.

I would most definitely recommend adding mini cows to your homestead if you are considering it.

There is something so sweet and gentle about a mini cow.

 

Should I raise meat birds on my homestead?

If you happen to be a vegetarian you could skip out on this article.

If you spend a lot of money at the grocery store weekly and are sick of the prices of meat as well as the quality you might want to continue reading.

Part of our homesteading journey included possibly raising meat birds.  Me, being the biggest animal lover couldn’t really stomach the idea.

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That is until King Mabel went rogue and transformed into an aggressive Rooster.

Anyways.  As our trial meat bird.  King Mabel’s life came to an end and he was processed for dinner.

So let’s get into it.

Pros

  • You know what quality of meat you are getting.  In our case we have had King Mabel for 10 months and we fed him a high quality chicken feed. (He was handfed up until a few weeks ago when he got testy)

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  • Free Range
  • Quite tasty was the consensus from the family.
  • It gave us a perspective on how much we as American’s consume.  That was a huge eye opener.
  • Taught the children a valuable lesson regarding consumption, and being grateful for the food on the table.  (They were not present for King Mabel’s death)
  • Ease of plucking and preparing the chicken.
  • Gives the hen’s a break they were starting to look a little ragged.
  • No loud crowing at 3:30AM.

Cons

  • Death.  I have always had a love hate relationship with meat.  The animal lover in me can’t really stomach too much.  So I’ll be honest I cried.
  • Finding a quick way to kill the chicken.  Like I said this has been a learning experience.

So our consensus was that it was worth it as you can see the pros definitely outweigh the cons to raising meat birds on your homestead.  It really put the amount of food we consume into perspective.  I know I can speak for myself when I say that I will consume much less meat now knowing and seeing the process from start to finish.

I’d say if you are seeking a simpler way to living.  Consider the pros and cons before raising your own meat birds.

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