I hope to soon place my order for our spring chicks, but as it is right now it looks like we might have to order through Tractor Supply again. We just don't have the funds right now for a foundation flock of Delawares (a very productive duel purpose breed) that I wanted to order. We might have to make due for now with what ever chickens I can get from Tractor Supply and local farmers.
As I mentioned the gilts are growing by the day, but our littlest piglet Dolly came down with a case of diarrhea. She is hanging out in a dog crate in the house entrance while I nurse her back to health. Because she is the smallest of the four I believe she was getting picked on, which stressed her out and resulted in her getting sick. She is doing much better after a couple days away from the others and a bit of medication for scours caused by e-coli. I don't like using medication, but this is a relatively targeted antibiotic not a broad spectrum.
Our goats are definitely pregnant and I expect kids sometime around April or May. I'm hoping to use the goat's milk to subsidize the pigs' feed, so I don't have to buy as much. I'd also like to try my hand at soap making, but we'll see. We are planning on keeping any males we get this year for meat, instead of just selling them off like last year. Flower our one hair sheep also went into heat this week and after spending a day with Duncan I suspect I will have a lamb(s) sometime in June.
I'm still planning out my garden and I have a few request for seed catalogs in the mail. The plan is to try the companion planting method this year and see if I can reduce the amount of insects and wildlife that normally befalls my gardens. I have a whole boat load of gardening and farming books I've been reading. This year I will be prepared to battle off whatever insect, sickness, or wild animal mother nature decides to through at me.
Also I'm planning on starting up a homestead/sustainable farmers' meetup group for the area. I've been wanting to meet with other like minded individuals, but I've yet to find a group for this area. All the people I talk to online are half ways across the country. There are plenty of farmers markets, but everyone I talk to there have been in the business for years and own massive farms. I would like to get to know other people like me who just have a few acres and a dream.