“Michael Pollan likens consumer choices to pulling single threads out of a garment. We pull a thread from the garment when we refuse to purchase eggs or meat from birds who were raised in confinement, whose beaks were clipped so they could never once taste their natural diet of worms and insects. We pull out a thread when we refuse to bring home a hormone-fattened turkey for Thanksgiving dinner. We pull a thread when we refuse to buy meat or dairy products from cows who were never allowed to chew grass, or breathe fresh air, or feel the warm sun on their backs.
The more threads we pull, the more difficult it is for the industry to stay intact. You demand eggs and meat without hormones, and the industry will have to figure out how it can raise farm animals without them. Let the animals graze outside and it slows production. Eventually the whole thing will have to unravel.
If the factory farm does indeed unravel – and it must – then there is hope that we can, gradually, reverse the environmental damage it has caused. Once the animal feed operations have gone and livestock are once again able to graze, there will be a massive reduction in the agricultural chemicals currently used to grow grain for animals. And eventually, the horrendous contamination caused by animal waste can be cleaned up. None of this will be easy.
The hardest part of returning to a truly healthy environment may be changing the current totally unsustainable heavy-meat-eating culture of increasing numbers of people around the world. But we must try. We must make a start, one by one.”
― Jane Goodall, Harvest for Hope: A Guide to Mindful Eating
Today was a very enjoyable day. We spent a few hours crocheting, and reading. Sabrina learned to crochet in circles, so she can begin learning to make hats, mittens, and many other fun things. Caroline learned to crochet a double stitch.Fun to learn something new and useful.
Before lunch, Caroline reminded me that today was the day we were supposed to call Farmer Sara to get an update on our baby goats. She said they had been born! The first Saanen on their farm was born yesterday, and it will be ours. Sara said that she would send us pictures tomorrow, find out when the vet is coming to do their check-up and give us a pick-up day. Hopefully it will be the next weekend. We will see…She said that there were several Alpine’s born, so Caroline will do her choosing tomorrow. She is hoping for a tan and darker brown colored goat. That is her favorite in the Alpine colors. We are beyond excited to get those pictures.
I did find out last night that a newborn dairy goat weighs between 5 and 7 pounds. So, it is possible that they could weigh more than Lolo at their birth. Lolo weighs about 6 pounds so now we can visualize the size of the box we need for our first week in the kitchen.
Tonight, after going into Marengo to the library, Sabrina, Jemie and I wandered around outside with the chickens. I picked up some tar paper that was on an old dog house that we tore down. It was showing through the snow because it got so warm today.( We are hoping to use the wood from the dog house for the nesting box construction.) While I was working hard trekking the tar paper form here to there, our Gold Lace Polish named Frannie, was making a lot of noise, She almost sounded like a rooster. I was distracted with my tar paper task, but I finally looked up to see what was going on. It was dusk, so it was time for all of the chickens to head into the barn. Frannie had decided that Sabrina needed to be in the barn too. She crowed louder and louder as Sabrina got further from the barn, and she followed her wherever she went. I told Sabrina to let Frannie herd her into the barn, so she did. She walked behind Sabrina the whole way and only stopped making all of her noise when Sabrina was safely inside the barn. Sabrina wasn’t willing to sleep in the barn under Frannie’s guard, so I snuck her out.
Frannie has taken over the rooster roll, thank goodness. It is always good to have someone watching out for everyone. Caroline read that when you do not have a rooster in your flock, this is what happens. A hen takes on the role and will sometimes even crow exactly like a rooster. They may also stop laying eggs.
We are getting a few more chickens this summer, and I am thinking one rooster might be a good idea. We want to find a Porcelain rooster to watch the flock. We had a Porcelain named Ferreed that we loved so much and was such a good rooster. He did not chase the girls and he made sure that everyone was in the coop at dusk. He was awfully pretty too.
Two eggs in the barn today. Buttercup is doing great. Her foot looks like nothing ever happened.