Dorper breeds were developed in the 1930s and ‘40s, and were officially recognized in South Africa in 1946. The fast-growing, well-muscled Dorpers are a cross between Horned Dorset rams and Blackhead Persian ewes. Dorper Sheep are typically docile and require minimal labor to manage. [Read more…]
Mike Cole of Glastenbury Farm hasn’t always raised turkeys. They are a fairly new addition to his family’s Canajoharie dairy farm.
“We’ve been raising turkeys for 3 years,” Cole said. “It just seemed like there was a market there for them and now people want to buy local so they know who they are getting their food from.”
Cole buys the turkeys locally as hatchlings and raises them up to market as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches. [Read more…]
Raising turkeys can be a satisfying educational activity as well as a source of economical, high-quality meat for your family and friends. By raising a small flock of turkeys, you can produce the freshest turkey possible while involving the whole family in working with and learning about live animals.
Turkeys can easily be started by hatching eggs or by raising young poults. They can be grown and home processed without the use of expensive processing equipment, or they may be sold to live markets (auctions).
Adult males have a naked, heavily carunculated (bumpy) head that normally is bright red but that turns to white overlaid with bright blue when the birds are excited. Other distinguishing features of the common turkey are a long red fleshy ornament (called a snood) that grows from the forehead over the bill; a fleshy wattle growing from the throat; a tuft of coarse, black, hairy feathers (known as a beard) projecting from the breast; and more or less prominent leg spurs. [Read more…]
Planning for next season, particularly if you plan to expand your capacity, is a multi-dimensional process. Are you going to grow more crops and become more diverse? Will you expand by growing more of the same crops, increasing your production capacity? Or perhaps you’ll expand by extending the growing season. No matter how you opt to grow, preparing for the growing pains can make the process successful.
Opportunities for scaling up small farms to serve a growing wholesale institutional demand for locally-sourced foods are knocking at the door. But farmers who choose to answer the call are advised to become GAP (Good Agricultural Pratices) certified, will need to implement washing and packing efficiencies, learn to manage labor, and have adequate storage facilities.
“People want what we are doing. Do not be afraid to scale up your farm,” farmer Tom Murtha, of Blooming Glen Farm in Perkasie, PA, said. [Read more…]