Some weekends are more eventful!

We had a slightly unanticipated busy weekend here at Balanced Earth Farm!  

With less than 24 hours notice, we received word that our amazing (74 y.o) sheep shearer would be arriving on Saturday.  We feel so luck to have such an amazing person shear for us, we drop everything to make it happen and we help our other local sheep friends get their sheep ready to!  Shearing day is definitely a community.  

Before…getting difficult to see!

After – Whoa – look at all the green grass I get to eat! 

Then….early this Morning our always stead and stellar sow Panama delivered 4 live piglets!  All double wattled. KuneKune babies are the cutest!

Born where Panama chose in a shed with straw.  All nursing and doing well.  All without us intervening!  This is why we love this breed. 

From Top to Bottom: 1) Ginger and Black Boar 2) Ginger gilt with with cream belly 3) Ginger and Black gilt 4) Cream Gilt

Fuzzy Calf!

We are so excited at our lead cow Bossy delivering another happy calf all on her own (and in her own time)!  I swear she waits until she knows we are not around to deliver, but she always delivers well is a great mom!  

So sometime yesterday Bossy delivered a little red heifer calf, that so far we are calling the lil’ lil’ heifer – which may get shortened to Lily!  She had quite the rainy first night, but was tucked away in some heavy brush and seems no worse for the wear tonight!

Camo Cow! Bossy always does a good job finding a protected place to have her calfs.  

A big rain storm can’t even get in the way of her awesome fuzziness!

Her sire – Arturo and her sister (born 4/1/16) Heffa. 

Chicken Feed

Today was a busy day here as we received a 2500 pound order of chicken feed for our laying hens and meat birds.  We work hard to find good, small producers of high quality feed.  We seek to feed Non-GMO food to supplement the grazing our birds do.  We also want to work with like-minded farmers who value the work they do.  The circle of sustainable farming can be achieved even when sourcing outside feed.  

We were very happy to find and work with a small feed mill out of Colville Washington: Red Bridge Farm.  Brad and his family are sourcing and milling high quality grains and creating a feed source that is healthy for the animals and as an extension those of us who may consume the products from these animals.  

If you are looking for a feed source in the Pacific Northwest, I would encourage you to take a look at Red Bridge: www.theredbridgefarm.com.  

 

Our chickens approved immediately!

The Second coming of beef!

SOLD OUT – Thank you again to our wonderful customers who support our small operation!  We really could not do this without the local support!

 

Did you miss out on Fall Beef? Well we are going to have another animal ready soon and we only have 1/2 share left! Let me know if you are interested!! This is 100% pasture fed organically raised beef. If you are going to eat meat, why not support sustainably raised products!  Our animals are born outside, live their lives in pasture and mixed forest and managed with intensive grazing practices which is better for the land AND the animal.  In the off season they are fed organic hay.

Scottish Highland meat is super lean, high omega content, and the taste is similar to beefalo (buffalo cross).   

Our cattle are NOT big cattle, therefore 1/2 a share is great for a larger family or share with some friends!

Bottle lambs happen

We’ve had a mixed lambing season with seven live lambs and two that didn’t make it.  The count is 4 ewes and 3 rams.  As happens sometime, we had an experienced ewe reject one of her twins.  We tried to see if we could convince another ewe to take him on (called grafting), but without success.  And so…we introduce Norbert: 

We will bottle feed him until we are able to wean him and move him back into the flock.  He’s a feisty little guy with quite the voice!

The dogs seem to be taking it all in stride: 

Poco is very protective of Norbert and will often not allow Pharaah near them. 

Norbert does enjoy cuddling up with Pharaah the ‘herding’ dog!

Winter Farm Visit!

I love having visitors to the farm!  Usually, people want to come when the weather is nice and the animals are frolicking in the pastures.  Thankfully, I have a few hardy friends who are willing to come when it is cold, snowy, and muddy!  

Oli and his mom Paloma came over to see the new lambs!  We actually have a wether (a castrated male sheep) a little younger than Oli, that shares his name and that this little guy got to bottle feed!  Thanks for the smiles guys!  

Finding Love Machine a new breeding Farm

We are on the hunt for a new farm for our 3 year old, proven, Mahia Love (x Awakino) Boar – Love Machine!  He is really good at his job and takes it very seriously.  He is also kind with his ladies and loves human attention.  He has a great head with classic KuneKune features.  He will add some New Zealand style to your breeding program!  If you know of anyone looking for a great boar we are open to selling him or trading him. 

More Snow – and lambing has begun

What a winter this has been!  We have had consistent storms since December and we have not had much true melt off.  The animals have come through the weather well and who would have thought that we would have started lambing in the snow?!?

On February 5th, 2017 one of our best ewe’s: Betty, delivered a large and vigorous black ewe lamb!  We had to improvise a lambing ‘jug’ (pen), but they are both doing well.  

We have another ewe about ready to join her  – mostly likely with twins!  I guess while Spring might still be 6 weeks away, new life has started here!

 

Winter weather is here with 17″ of SNOW!

I love the first snow of the year!  So quiet and peaceful; everyone slows down (at least for a little while!).  The whole town seems more like the quaint mountain town we are.  Even with the extra work needed on the farm, I still love the snow!  It is a time to allow ourselves to relax a little – at least after chores!

Thankfully for this storm we had some warning and we were able to get the pigs tucked into super insulated shelters!  The cows and sheep seem to mind less, but (as you will see below), we did move the sheep out from the trees and into an area with more traditional shelter.  We ended up with just shy of 17″ in this first storm with more due this week.  I hope you love the snap shots of the farm in winter!  

Hauling water out to the pigs and sheep!

Pig Train coming out of their straw insulated Pig-loo.

Checking out the fresh water, wondering where breakfast is!

Tabor – our little boar from Loreen Milbrath at East Island Farms!  He’s such a poser!!

These large trees also help shelter the pig lot – allowing an easy place for them to feed. 

Pharaah the farm dog having fun in the snow!

Love Machine and Panama are not so sure about all this stuff!

The Cattle enjoying their Organic Cabbage scraps from Oregon Brineworks!  Check this company out if you need amazing fermented foods or the best hot sauce around!

Poco helping lead the sheep to more sheltered pastures!

MORE fun for Pharaah!

Morning light!