Turkey

We eat turkey but we don’t raise turkeys to eat…………..yet.  We’ve thought about it, considered it, turned the idea over and over but haven’t taken the plunge.

Molly:  Turkeys have a reputation of being mean and I don’t like keeping mean animals around that may or may not jump on you.

Mike:  My cousin Joel who raises a few hundred each year in Maine likes them.  He says they are pretty funny and not aggressive, more curious.

Molly: Yeah but they eat a lot!

Mike: True………..Kind of expensive

We did get an opportunity to kill a couple of turkeys this year.  Mommy Shea was talking  to a friend at church who had been raising two turkeys but then had to move to town.  They didn’t have time to process the turkeys which were still at their old house.  Mommy Shea had it all set up.  She’d get us to go down to Albuquerque, pick up the turkeys, drive them back to our house, kill and process them, drive them back down and deliver one to her and one to her friend.  Gotta give Mommy Shea points for coming up with a creative way to get a free turkey. We ducked her generous offer.  It sounded like of a lot of driving and work.  Anyhow the turkey’s free to us no matter where she’s getting it since we’re going down there for Thanksgiving.  (yup, still freeloading in our forties!)

It did get us thinking about the next animal(s) we might want to add to our mini-farm.  Right now Mike is goat sitting for our friends.  They have two miniature goats and one is pregnant.  The friend has offered the kid to us after it’s born.  Making soft goat cheese isn’t that difficult and we just love to eat it.

Molly:  My only problem is the daily chore of milking the goat.  She has to  get milked every day.  The chickens are easy.  In the warmer months I spend every day in their yard but when it gets cold I might do a run by and a ‘hey chickens, how-are-ya-doing-gotta-go it’s dang cold out’.  I can skip a day in other words.

Mike:  Milking the goats is not a big chore and takes about 15 minutes but I hear you.  I’ve been doing it for a week now and it’s already getting old.  So turkeys or goats?

Molly:  I don’t know!  What are some other choices?

Mike:  Cow?

Molly:  Nope.

Mike:  Pig?

Molly:  A big N-O-P-E.

Mike:  Hmm…

Molly:  Peacock!  I’ve always wanted a  peacock!

Pistols peacock drawing

Mike:  Peacocks are expensive and you have to get several peafowl because they are very difficult to sex at birth.  We’d end up with a bunch of females and no males and they are Nois-Ey.

Molly:  Noisy like a warning!  They could be our ‘watch peacocks’.

Mike:  Yeah….watch peacocks, I’m not buying it.   They like to roost in the trees and wander.  Can you say coyote bait?   Are you going to train them to stay in the yard?  I don’t want to build a 30′ tall cage for them.  But what about guinea hens?

Molly:  Wanderers and noisy.  I think the coyotes would have them for dinner in about a minute.

Mike: They are so cool looking though and great bug eaters.

Mike: I guess we’ll wait on any more animals for the time being.

Molly: Yeah I guess…..(Psst… If anyone has a suggestion of what animal we should get next post it on our facebook wall……..Mike never goes there)

 

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Instructables is a site where people from all over the world share their projects and how to make them.  You can find everything from homebuilt cars to techie stuff to great cooking.  It’s like the wikipedia of projects but with more pictures.  There is truly something for everyone there.  The pro membership allows you to view the site with no ads and see all the steps of a project in a single page as well as a few other conveniences.  Once you start going to Instructables a few times we know it will find its way into a cozy spot on your bookmarks bar.  

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13 Comments

  1. Posted November 23, 2011 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    We raised two turkeys this year.  They have been so much fun.  They haven’t displayed any meaness – in fact,  they were so dependent on us and intergrated with us to the point that we had to build them a huge pen with a roof so they wouldn’t roost on our deck at night (and leave tons of you know what on the floor).  They even have a hen living with them and they’ve never hurt her either. Because of their friendly personalities and our bonding there is no way we could eat them. 

    • Posted November 24, 2011 at 7:23 am | Permalink

      I do remember the post you did when you got them.  They looked so cute as babies!

  2. Posted November 23, 2011 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    Some good friends raise turkeys for the table, as well as ducks and bantam chickens.  This year they’ve added guinea fowl for pest control.  I’ve heard no comment about the turkeys being mean.
    By the way, BEAUTIFUL drawing by little Pistol.

  3. Posted November 23, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

    If you want an animal for meat, what about rabbits? They can be raised in hanging pens pretty easily and will reproduce pretty quickly. Friends that lived in a rural area raised rabbits in their barn in hanging cages, as well as ducks for meat and eggs, dairy goats, and a few turkeys. I think their main issues with rabbits were keeping them cool in hot summers and keeping their water fluid in deep winter. They found good work-arounds for those issues, though.

  4. Sandyl
    Posted November 24, 2011 at 4:03 am | Permalink

    My friend lens farm liked to collect exotic fowl. They had all kinds of crazy stuff there. He even had an albino peacock. Peacocks are noisy but they are cool.

    • Posted November 24, 2011 at 7:22 am | Permalink

      The guy across the river from my parents has an albino peacock.  They are so beautiful!

  5. Natalie
    Posted November 24, 2011 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    Can I just say that Pistol’s drawing absolutely ROCKS! I love peacocks! It would make a cool t-shirt design.

    • Posted November 24, 2011 at 7:21 am | Permalink

       She’s got two great art teachers.  One teaches the foundation (drawing, painting, sculpture) while the other teaches social justice type of projects (murals, recycled art, etc…)

  6. JAR
    Posted November 24, 2011 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Mmmm…are you looking for ‘friends’ or ‘food’? I didn’t know Pistol was such an artist.

  7. Posted November 25, 2011 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    I’ve raised chickens, goats, turkeys, geese, ducks, more goats, more chickens, rabbits, donkeys, llamas, sheep, more goats, more chickens, guineas, milk cows (very briefly). But no peacocks because I am NOT payinug $100 a head for coyote bait. Turkeys are dumb and more likely to get eaten by predators. So turkeys are a good option if you have good fencing , but then you have to feed them (they can free range quite a bit and eat grass/bugs/grasshoppers/ticks …). You’ll notice that chickens and goats are the two animals that keep coming back for me… it’s because they fare the best and give me the most bang for my buck. But yeah, milking goats every day is a pain…. so that’s why you give yourself a break (yesterday was my last milking until February when the pregnant does all kid again). And I like chicken meat better than turkey anyway.

  8. Posted November 25, 2011 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    And turkeys are not mean, in my experience. Geese, on the other hand…

    • Posted November 27, 2011 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      My prejudice comes from one story…yes, I based all my knowledge on a story my old vet told me.  He was giving a donkey some type of exam.  I guess the donkey’s BFF was a turkey.  During the exam the turkey attacked the vet!

One Trackback

  1. By Tiny the Goat - mikeandmollyshouse.com on December 5, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    […] been debating the next addition to our mini farm.  When our friend, ‘Goat Girl’, said she needed someone to milk her goat while she was […]

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