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Category Archives for Farming

How to Raise Honeybees: A Beginner’s Guide

Sheep, chickens, horses, pigs … if I could have only one kind of homestead livestock, I’d choose honeybees. You never have to muck out stalls of bee manure. You don’t need to keep their water trough thawed in subfreezing weather. And — thank God — you don’t have to get up in the dark every morning before even a rooster goes off and go out to pull on some bee udders. Members of Apismellifera can clean themselves, fetch their own food and water and store your harvest. They’ll even patch their home’s leaks!

Start you bee hive HERE

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Learn how to build a chicken coop for your backyard. Here’s a beginner’s guide to building a DIYchicken coop!


The housing for your chickens can be as simple or fancy as your imagination and budget permit. The basic criteria will be dictated by the birds.

DIY Chicken Coop Plans and Designs

  1. First, decide on the size. You will need 2 square feet of floor space per chicken, and one nest box for every three hens. Nest boxes should be about a foot square. For larger breeds such as Jersey Giants, allow an additional square foot of floor space per bird. Learn more about the sizes of different chicken breeds to figure out which size chicken coop is right for you.
  2. Sketch the chicken coop on paper, with measurements. (Don’t know where to start? Check the plans for any size of flock here.)
  3. It might also be helpful to mark the ground where the coop will be erected, taking into consideration its location relative to the sun (southern exposure ensures greater warmth and sunlight); any nearby structures (will you attach it to a garage or barn?); and the need for a run, fenced or not (more on that in a moment). Build your coop and run on high ground to avoid battling water and mud problems!

Find out more HERE

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But they’re about to move into their very own goat house. It might not be the fanciest one on the block, but it’s got farmhouse written all over it.

Because, you know, goats care about that sort of thing.

And the best part is that you can build your goat house with free — or at the very least — cheap materials.


Read more HERE

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The Best Duck Breeds for Beginners

Are ducks right for me?

Ducks are a great animal to start with if you are considering adding livestock to your life, but of all the duck breeds which one should you pick? Farm or not, having these adorable waddlers in your backyard is always entertaining!

They are small and easy to handle, tend to be quite hardy, rarely become aggressive, most breeds don’t fly, and they are sociable and engaging to watch.

Duck eggs are delicious, higher in both protein and healthy fats than chicken eggs are (bakers go nuts over them), and some people who are sensitive to chicken eggs can eat duck eggs with no problem (if you are actually allergic to eggs, please consult your medical professional for advice).

Some breeds, especially the hybrids selected for egg production, lay more eggs per year than the best production chickens do, do so for more years, and seem to be far less likely to stop laying when days get short in the winter or hot in the summer (chicken hens can be real prima donnas when stressed).

Duck meat is also delicious, and, if your ducks get plenty of exercise and a good diet, they won’t be as fatty as some commercial duck meat is. For a while, we raised Muscovy ducksand the meat was very similar to a beef roast.

How many Ducks should I Get?


Read more on ducks HERE

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