Laughing Duck Ranch - July/Mid Summer Update
Greetings from the farm! We've been planning to put together a regular farm newsletter for quite some time now, and so here we are, finally getting down to it. Although we try to post news on Instagram here and there, it doesn't always get done as often as we'd like, and a few sentences really isn't much of an update, now is it?!
So, here we are in the "dog days of summer". Apparently this is some sort of Greco-Roman figure of speech, but it always reminds me of Jessie, our Great Pyr, sleeping the heat of the day away in the middle of July. While she sleeps lazy afternoons away, we are busy moving chickens and cattle, gathering saskatoons to preserve for winter, hoping the extra water in the fields won't damage our cover crops too much, and trying to get some haying done!
The pastured chickens have been in their "chicken tractors" for about a week now, moving to fresh grass daily as they make their way across the field. The first thunderstorm had Judah (with some help) out at midnight making sure his birds were protected from the elements, and transferring the wettest ones back into the barn for one more night. Thankfully the crisis was largely averted, and all is well.
The laying flocks are in peak egg laying production with the long daylight hours, and there is a fresh new hatch of chicks and ducklings growing up to increase our flock numbers. We are looking forward to be able to provide eggs to more customers in the fall!
Although we had to make the difficult decision to significantly downsize our cattle herd at the end of last summer due to drought (not enough hay for the winter), the cattle are looking just beautiful right now, and moving them to fresh grass each day continues to be one of our favorite daily chores. It is so satisfying to watch them check out a new area, and begin munching away. We have been very happy with our alternative fly control methods, two traps that are designed to catch horseflies and the "other" flies, respectively. We move the traps with the cattle as they make their way around the farm, and they are kept quite comfortable.
On a more personal note, we want you to know that you are welcome at the farm. We do not do farm tours, and most of our days are very full, but we believe that transparency, and real relationships are the way to building a healthier food future for all of us. If you desire to come to the farm to meet us face to face, and see where your food comes from, we'd love to see you out here! Feel free to contact us to set up a time to come by. And of course, on farm pick up is always available by appointment.
We plan on making a delivery trip in to the Winnipeg area on Saturday, July 18. Please contact us for an update on what is currently available.
For those of you interested in pre ordering quarters and halves of beef, and/or whole chickens for the fall, please get in touch with us to be on our contact list, if you have not done so already.
And finally, thank you to all our valued customers. We are so thankful for each and every one of you. In our culture of convenience, it takes a conscious effort to be willing to do the work of learning about where your food comes from, investing in a freezer (or two!), buying directly from a farm, and figuring out delivery/pick up logistics that are out of your regular routine. We are grateful that you are on this journey with us, and it is an honor to produce your food.
We hope you are having a wonderful summer, and we look forward to connecting with you soon!
Laughing Duck Ranch