L. Zell

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since Jun 17, 2013
Missouri
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Recent posts by L. Zell

Are blister beetles toxic to poultry? I'm pretty sure they are to horses, but does anyone have any experience with this? I've got a plague in my tomatoes...
6 years ago
I do not have cattle, but do have goats. I have been sprinkling DE on the bedding to help cut down on flies, but I'm not to where I want to be yet on control.
I was at the Elaine Ingham seminar at Greg Judy's farm last week, and learned a TON. One of the things we discussed is that the flies are a symptom of our soil food web being out of balance. Specifically, things are anaerobic. We also went and looked at some of Greg's cattle, and like someone said upthread, he is trying to breed for an oily, slick cow that doesn't attract flies. One cow had a ton, and he said she is one of the first ones on the cull list. He also has hundreds of tree swallow houses. There were tree swallows everywhere, and he said that has also made a big difference.
6 years ago
My experience is almost the opposite of yours. My Nubians have been super calm, sweet, easy to lead, seldom get themselves into trouble, stay inside the electric fence. I'm getting rid of the lamanchas, because they tend to bully the other goats and are the first ones to test the electric fence. I got rid of the first one a couple of weeks ago, when her kid was old enough to be weaned, and the rest of the herd has been much better about staying inside the fence. And she had ear infections. Good riddance.
Jay, I think you misunderstood me--I've worked in "herd health" for 15 years, and have a degree in Animal Science. I am basing my reluctance to feed birds to birds on that. The last presentation I watched my boss give had a cartoon that went something like, "Fred, I don't feel so hot. I think I have X. How do you think that happened? I don't know George, but it might have something to do with eating Tom last month." Feeding cows to cows spreads Mad Cow disease. I just read an article that they think the new pig virus might be spread by feeding pig plasma to baby pigs. Some people are comfortable with that level of risk. Not me.
6 years ago
I didn't mean to imply that horns have anything to do with the smell, just that the only way I have heard of removing the scent glands is by burning when dehorning. I hate horns on goats, and the only way they get to stay at my place now is without them. I understand that there are pros and cons to leaving them on. The only goat I needed to use the horns as a handle, was because he was trying to hook me with said horns.
I admit that I come at my slight phobia by means of work. I work at a diagnostic lab. I will continue to avoid feeding birds to birds. I also get the total heebyjeebies going to the sale barn. YMMV.
6 years ago
In my limited experience, he will smell a lot more this year. If you were going to remove the scent glands on his head, you would've had to do it at a few days old, when they are usually disbudded with a hot iron. I've not done it, so I don't know for sure if that would've helped. They spend a lot of time peeing on their heads and legs, so that is going to smell, too. They also have tarsal glands in their hind legs, those I've not heard you can do anything about. So, long story short, bucks stink. Some more than others.
I would be concerned about parasites/disease feeding birds to birds.
Mice make an excellent chicken feed. Mine fight over trapped mice. A live mouse is hunted down and bashed on the ground until dead, then down the hatch. I'm convinced that the folks who designed the velociraptors in Jurasic Park were modeling them after chickens.
6 years ago
What I do with my goats is to keep an eye on things for the first week or two. If mom seems to have a big udder, I milk her out twice a day from the beginning, and give the kid unrestricted access. After the first week, if the little one is doing good, I lock the kid up (wire dog crates work well, so they can sleep next to each other) at night and milk in the morning. The kid is with mom all day. I continue this until weaning for the buck kids (7-10 weeks) and until I dry up the does in the fall for any keeper doe kids. This is the fourth year I've done this, and I'm really happy with the results.
Tillage radish or a broadfork
6 years ago