Monday, October 8, 2012

Day 9 - Alternative Feed Sources for Cattle

31 Days of Homestead Living!

Hi!  I'm so glad to be able to tell you that the cows all stayed in their pastures today!   No calls of cows out.  What a blessing.  I did get a phone call that Husband was stuck somewhere and his truck wouldn't start.  But other than that, it was a great day.

I thought I would talk about some alternative ways we have fed our cattle and other livestock in the past. 

We used to go to the day-old bread stores and buy what was called “feed bread”. I would fill my car completely full, and you would not be able to see out. It was like $.50 a tray, all kinds of breads, rolls, cakes, etc. It was suppose to be only feed quality for animals, but I did pull stuff out to feed my family. We did this a lot for the rabbits, ducks, and pigs. Any animal just about will eat bread. But after a while, a large farmer started paying in advance and picking up all the bread, in large trucks. Us little people don’t get it much any more. I don’t even go try.

Another thing we have done. Here where we live, some of the farms have “Pumpkin Patches” where the kids can come and pick pumpkins, for a price. The local one buys rabbits from us for their petting zoo. We have paid them in November after they close, to go in the fields and pick pumpkins, like $5 a pick-up truck load. Last year, they said they would have given them to us, but I asked the day after they tilled them under! I’m not going to be shy this yea.  I'm going to make a point to ask sooner!

A friend we share a pasture with, goes to the cotton gin and busy the cotton “trash”. Seeds, hulls, etc. The cows LOVE it, and eat as much as you will give them. We mix this with their feed.  It is good to put weight on the cows.

We also feed them the left overs from the garden, and the corn stalks, etc.

We order our feed now, and it gets delivered in a truck.  We have to have a feed wagon to have it loaded into.  Some people get feed mix with candy in it.  It is cheap and puts weight on the cows.  Ordering feed this way is an investment, but it is cheaper than buying it by the bag at the local feed store.

We also sometimes buy "year old" hay.  We haven't had a problem having our own hay the last few years.  But some years we run short.  So we do buy hay, and don't mind buying last year's if it is in good condition and the price is right.

Thanks for stopping by!  Honey

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