Hello and welcome to another Metro East Farms update. October was kind of rough we lost a very good dog that we rescued many years ago. he passed away mid-October; he will be sorely missed. We have had a few changes we have added 5 Pekin ducks (Hens) and a Saanen dairy goat that we think may be pregnant. She was bottle fed and was raised in the former owner’s home until weaned and she is very affectionate to humans. She is 2 years old, this makes 3 dairy goats on the farm Willow a Alpine, Dolly Pardon a Nubian and Rosa Blanco a Saanen the name is “White Rose in Spanish.
We have received another $100.00 which will be spent on metal water bowls for the rabbits. We are making a DYI water warmer to keep it from freezing the hopes re to add a thermostat to kick on the entire system on when the temp reaches 34F outside temperature. We will be putting plastic over the fronts of the rabbit hutches to keep out the weather as much as possible.
As some may know we rescued 3 Great Pyrenees livestock dogs. They are strong mountain dogs standing up to 33 inches at the shoulder and can get to 120+ pounds for a male and 80-100 pounds for a female 100 pounds. These guardians are very calm, but they can quickly spring aggressively into action and move with grace and speed to meet a threat to your livestock. A full-grown dog can easily kill a Coyote, Fox, Raccoons, Opossums and anything that wanders into the fenced in boundaries even other dogs and cats.
These dogs protect all your livestock including fowl and poultry, you just must raise them and acclimate them to the idea that they are to be protected not eaten. They have lush weatherproof coat is all white, or white with markings of beautiful shades of gray, tan, reddish-brown, or badger. I hear that the tan black markings are harder to find but only one of this litter is pure white and yes they are full blooded Great Pyrenees.
All the 8 does are pregnant I am pretty good and figuring out if a doe is going to be twins or a single birth, this year it looks like 6 sets of twins and two singles, after weaning I defiantly be milking 3 for sure, however I have milked the others but only got a quart and a half per goat per day. The 3 dairy breeds should double or triple the amount per goat per day. I enjoy milking but when they give a small amount it’s just not the effort unless you really need it.
Hello Friends, today we are going to talk about Poultry, specifically today we will talk about winterizing your hen house and helping your chickens to be comfortable during the winter months.
Chickens are resilient in pretty much all seasons however, Winter can be stressful and with the cold and shorter days they may slow down on laying or stopping all together, the other issue is eggs freezing before you harvest them. Here we harvest eggs each morning and evening when we lock the birds up for the night.
Chickens and other poultry lay best when the days are longer, and the temperature is tolerable because they lay the most eggs when they believe they can hatch babies it’s like fooling their clocks. We have timers on our lights that kick on at 5 Pm Central time to 11:00 Pm this gives them over 14 hours of light. It doesn’t matter if it’s sunlight, it just had to be light.
When the sun begins to set the timers kick on the lights and ALL the poultry and water fowl will head for the Poultry House and begin roosting so that when we come out they are already roosting and all we do is shut the doors to keep them protected from predators even though we have 3 Great Pyrenees ‘that roam the goat pasture which surrounds the chicken pen and house. (Great Pyrenees’ are livestock protection dogs by their breed. We keep the lights on timers in the summer, but the times change to 6 Pm to 9 Pm CST because they will go to roost without having to chase down poultry.
As said before chickens are hardy BUT they can get frostbite and fall prey to sickness. We take a couple heat lamps lamps (Make sure they have a safety cage on them see picture) and a small heater (Chicken house is 18 Ft Long 6 Ft deep and 7 ½ feet high) this is enough heat to bring the temperatures up high enough to keep the eggs from freezing and give the chickens a way to get at least some comfort. It’s not that they will die but that they are comfortable just think about your comfort and you will understand.
Eggs freezing and busting is another concern and with the heat lamps and heaters (Safety tipping switch suggested, Heat lamps safer) it will bring the temperatures just high enough to prevent freezing and bursting. But they are other things that need to be done. Here at Metro East Farms the first determination was extreme heat and cold, so the poultry house was orientated so that the door faces East this is because the United States the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. In the summer the sun comes up in the east rising and going across the southern horizon and finally setting in the west.
It is much cooler in the morning and as it goes across the southern horizon it gets warmer and eventually hotter before setting in the west. 95% of our storms in the spring and summer come from the south west towards the East and North East driving rain into buildings not oriented thoughtfully. WINTER is another story the sun still rises and sets the same way however most Fall and Winter comes from the North and North West again driving weather such as obscene cold temperatures, sleet and snow into building not oriented with thought.
The BEST orientation for chicken houses, rabbit hutches, dog houses and even barns are best if the entrances and fronts of rabbit hutches face the East because it gets light, no hot sun directly into the buildings and or weather and trees will help providing some shade in the summer and fall and winter no leaves it will benefit from the sun hitting the buildings.
The other thing to consider is insulation this can be done cheaply fiberglass insulation rolls are cheap, Generic paneling or super thin paneling is cheap and it’s able to keep the temperatures more consistent. One other thing is air circulation, DON’T cover your ventilation openings instead only cover ¾ of the ventilation area. We have a hole at both the top and bottom we cover the bottom opening screen completely except for a 1-inch gap at the top of the bottom opening and then we cover the top opening screen ¾ to allow the ammonia and such to escape
I hope this has helped you. I know some people will disagree there always is someone that thinks they are a professional or a know it all, but this is how we do it and it works and that is what is important. BUT don’t feed your chickens inside the poultry house many reasons but I’ll let you google that. You can place water inside to keep thawed but be aware you’re probably going to have to clean the container more. Here we use a floating Anti-Ice device that keeps the temperatures high enough to prevent freezing. We use a 15-gallon galvanized tub and 2 kiddie swimming pools for the ducks HOWEVER we don’t fill the kiddie pools when freezing is in a 24-hour window because ducks require water to moisten food so they can swallow.
I hope this helps, please consider joining our mailing list here on Metro East farms so you receive the newsletters and post in your EMail.
It’s obvious that any post that was a non-Democrat vote was struck swiftly by Facebook and for 1 post that was posted back in February and one post in March that was both Pro-Trump and against the Liberal and socialist agenda. I am banned for 30 days with 15 left. I have received phone calls and emails that they were trying to contact me via Facebook, and I am unable to respond to anyone.
When someone can’t exorcise their 1st, amendment rights I am not sure I will stay on Facebook and might pull all pages and groups and find another form of media. So If I decide to pull everything off Facebook I will Give notification 30 days before we do.
We train and socialize small farm animals such as chickens, ducks, turkeys, rabbits, goats, puppies and dogs to nursing homes to visit with the residents. We often take these animals inside the facility and the residents are allowed to hold, cuddle, pet and feed them while we are there for the event at no charge to the seniors or the facility.
We also are available to take these same animals to the mentally and physically disabled as well as autistic children’s birthday parties. Within a 50-mile radius of New Douglas, IL at no charge to the clients in Illinois. (Missouri may include a fuel fee)
We survive on donations and income received from animals, products or crafts made by Metro East Farms to go right back into the estimated $5,000.00 yearly budget. These sales make up about 60% of the operations with a estimated 40% from contributions by either cash, supplies such as new or used wood, fencing, feed and other items that can be utilized by the organization.
The pandemic has hit us hard where regular donations came in as a steady flow since then has trickled to a alarming level due to loss of jobs and uncertainty of their income situation has had people to keep reserves in case needed which is understandable which is why we are pleading for new sponsors, supporters or one time donators.
We are pleading for donations at this time to cover that last $550.00 needed for straw used as bedding and the remaining towards feed that will be bought before seasonal prices rise. We store the feed bought so that we don’t give winter prices for grains and other feeds.
Donators of $10.00 or more will receive a letter of appreciation on our letterhead and signed by the president of the organization. Your name will be placed on the donators list on our website under donator/supporters and any donation of $20.00 per year we will assign you an animal you get to choose what species such as Chickens, Ducks, Turkeys, Rabbits, Goats or our Great Pyrenees livestock guard dogs. You will get a list of available animals you can choose from. We show you a list of available animals for sponsorships and when you choose that animal we tag or leg band the animal with a serial number and you also will be able to give that animal a name (No nasty names rated G only) at that $20.00 per year donation level we send you photos of your animals quarterly which will NOT be posted anywhere by us. Those are YOUR photos and you own the rights to them therefore if you found a legal way to sell or let someone use a photo for monitory gain on a photo we send you in your quarterly update the copyright is yours entirely because we gave up ownership of what we sent you.
If you are local to the local area of New Douglas, IL area and would like to volunteer your time to help out on the farm or at events we can offer you the same options and still be considered a donator/supporter/volunteer/sponsor
Please consider donating to our cause, Call or email us if you want to buy feed, supplies and such and send it if you don’t want to send cash. Then you for the time of reading this letter.
Metro East Farms
83 Mettlerville Lane
New Douglas, IL 62074
Today I am taking a day off of chores other than the typical feeding and daily head counts or dogs, Goats, Ducks, Rabbits and Turkeys and I normally do that 3 – 4 times a day and nightly lock up of the birds (Poultry).
While we have had some donations come in such as $200.00 for hay and a few other donations as listed on the September 2020 report. Has helped but more is needed such as some of our normal donors couldn’t donate because of financial changes due to the worldwide COVID-19 Pandemic. We have still yet to cover the rest of straw used in bedding and the rest of the feed needed until early or mid-spring 2021.
We estimate a remaining operation balance would be about $350.00 and we will be fine until we can start up events again at the nursing homes and hopefully our regular donors would have a better financial situation to once again help support us.
We appreciate anything even if it’s a dollar or new/used supplies or certain feeds we use including hay or straw for bedding.
If you have any questions feel free to E-Mail me at email@example.com or donate via PayPal with major credit debit cards securely through PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org we are a registered business through them. You may also send donations or items to.
Metro East Farms
83 Mettlerville Lane
New Douglas, IL 62074
Good Afternoon! Allot of things have been finished this last month a volunteer crew came up last weekend to put up the new fence to give the goats another ½+ acres and increases their grazing area allowing us to cut back on grains until after the first frost when Grain and hay will take the place of the grazing pasture.
I hate to sound like a broken record, but we have cut as much as can and operating on the bare minimum. We had one nursing home event in January then COVID-19 shut everything down and people lost their jobs and donations from our regular donators plummeted. Even with us not doing events because of the pandemic we still must take care of the animals, WE NEED YOUR HELP
Straw – $75.00 This will last us for 12 months by buying in bulk.
Feed is a little different situation because of the types of feed needed.
350lbs – Whole Corn $6.04 per #50 Bag 400lbs – Cracked Corn $7.19 per #50 Bag 250lbs – Egg Laying Pellets $8.99 per #50 Bag 250lbs – Hen Scratch $7.99 per #50 Bag 300lbs – All Flock Poultry Feed $11.21 per #50 Bag 250lbs – Chick Starter $11.97 per #50 Bag 250lbs – Rabbit Pellets $10.99 per #50 Bag 500lbs – Goat Sweet Feed $9.49, $12.99 per #50 Bag
50lbs – Sodium Bicarb #50 $21.99 per #50 Bag
The feed and straw are a priority and needs before the end of the year. You can purchase these products at our feed store via their website then they will notify us to pick it up or PayPal us we are a verified business and accept major credit cards and debit cards or visit us and you can use our Point of Sale reader.
Larry Beyer of Granite City IL put together a voulenteer work crew to do a fence project that Metro East Farms has been trying to get done since the spring of 2020. Most of the steel T-Post driven into the ground May or June by Patrick Vandaveer of Lebanon IL. On Saturay September 26th Larry Beyer of Granite City IL put together a 4 man all voulenteer work crew Jeremy Beyer from Collinsville IL, Logan Williams from Edwardsville IL, Brett Sardigal from Alton IL, Josh Hancock from East Alton IL.
Once we got started it went pretty quick and turned out pretty well. It is people like this that helps get things done benifitting the animals by giving them so much more pasture to graze in.
Yesterday we received a $200.00 cash donation handed to us by a Highland, IL man who wishes to be anonymous. The donation was to be towards the hay leaving a balance of $50.00 this hay will last us until this time next year. Without that donation it was going to get rough to keep far enough ahead to take any type of breather.We still need roughly $200.00 for square bales of straw used as bedding for the Goats, Rabbits, Ducks, Chickens and Turkeys. We will also need an additional $250.00 for Rabbit pellets, Goat Sweet Feed, Egg Laying pellets for Chickens, Ducks and Turkeys and Cracked corn which we mix in the Poultry and Goat feed to stretch the more expensive feed by as much as 25% – 50%. We can take 50 lbs. of sweet feed and turn it into 75– 80 lbs. of mixed feed saving as much as $14.00 and in chicken feed 50 lbs. Egg Laying Pellets and 50 lbs. cracked corn making 100 lbs. of mixed feed saving almost $20.00 per 100 lbs.So right now we need another $450.00 To complete the next 12 months. With the COVID-19 this has been the toughest year for donations we have ever had. I am 100% sure we can get everything we need if we have a little help… Thank You!
All Donations and Sponsorship go to Medications, Veterinary, Feed, hay, Bedding, Fencing, Building materials & Transporting animals to and from Nursing Centers.