KaPa De'Le Farm

  (Somerset, California)
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February 4, 2013 -- the Turkeys are Coming!

We are having beautiful weather here in Northern CA!  Temps are in the 60's, and even though I know that Old Man Winter will return with a vengence I am enjoying watching the trees budding, listening to the birds singing and now the Turkeys have started laying!  I got my first turkey eggs today!  What a pleasant surprise.  I raised a batch of White Holland Turkeys last year and kept 2 hens and a tom.  This year I'll hatch out as many as I can and will be keeping about 12; the rest will be for sale as poults and/or Thanksgiving/ Christmas Turkeys. 

I am now taking reservations for White Holland Turkey eggs, poults, young Turkeys or even your Thanksgiving/Christmas Turkey.  Email me through the Local Harvest site or comment on this blog. 

Thanks for visiting!


Rain, rain, rain!

December 7, 2012; well "they" told us that the sun was going to shine today; but, it didn't.  It was a foggy, drizzly, cold mess all day.  On our little piece of heaven, over that past 4 days, we've had almost 7 inches of rain.  For some of you, that may not seem like much, but it is very unusual for the California Gold Country.  The young pigs were flooded out of their pen and are very comfy in the barn.  We've discovered a leak or two here and there - nothing a little silicone won't fix once the sun comes out.  

We need the rain, so I am not yet complaining.  I am already looking forward to warm spring days; this season, though is one of rest and rejuvenation.  Although rest is always in short supply, wintertime gives us the strength to make it through all the work we're looking at in the spring!  And we are only 15 days to the Winter Solstice which is the shortest day of the year - and the first day of winter - after that the days get longer, bit by bit and before you know it the goats will be kidding, piglets will be running around and life will be good!


Happy Thanksgiving!

As we wait for our turkey to cook, I wanted to take a moment to thank our family, friends and customers for your support this year! I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

It's the Middle of October! and....

Well, the calendar says it's October 14th, but some of our poultry don't seem to realize that winter is right around the corner!  We have a new mama duck with three cute little ducklings that are about 3 weeks old.  Today, we saw a chicken parading her new babies around what we call "Goat Mountain".  Goat Mountain is so named because of all the rock formations - great for jumping on and climbing - if you are a goat.  :)

This afternoon, Paula went out to check on the critters and heard some peep, peep, peeping.  Upon investigation she found 3 lost baby chicks, where did they come from?  Another chicken must have hatched eggs and "lost" her chicks.  Not really likely, but odder things have happened.  When I got outside, I found another "lost" chick - teeny, tiny - could have only have been a day or so old.  Where was the mama?  The Mama on Goat Mountain still had her chicks and she was very protective and didn't want any interference.  Paula and Sammey were setting up a brooder in the chicken trailer and I was hooking up the electricity - I thought we were done brooding chicks this year - when I found the mama and two more chicks.  The surprise was that Mama was Duck - Duck.  Duck - Duck is a six month old Muscovey Duck.  Evidently Duck - Duck was broody and she wasn't particular about what species of eggs she sat on.  Duck - Duck was raised with our meat chickens because she had gotten trampled as a duckling and needed some recovery time.  So maybe that's why she hatched out 5 itty bitty chicks!   We're leaving the chicks in the brooder - Duck - Duck evidently isn't a very good chicken Mama - leaving the chicks all over the barnyard.  Hopefully, she will improve when she actually hatches out some ducklings.


Fall is in the Air!

I love this time of year!  We need the air conditioner in the afternoon and the heater in the morning!  This year, John and I have built a cold frame and I'm going to see how long I can extend my growing season.  

Our broilers are getting big and should be ready mid-October. I'll have about 10 available for sale, so if you are interested, e-mail or give me a call.

It's time to go out and enjoy the day.  :)\


Population Explosion


These Muscovy ducklings are enjoying some watermelon rind.  Anything to keep them out of my garden.  They've found some little holes and they are sneaking in and have pretty much destroyed by bell peppers, they eat the zucchini flowers and they even nibble on the jalapenos!  So far, they haven't had much interest in the tomatoes.  :)


The Cornish Cross below are amazing little creatures.  They grow from hatch to freezer in just 8 weeks.  These little ones are learning all about foraging while they are still in the brooder trailer.  Hopefully today, they will get out in their portable pen so they can scratch around, eat bugs and basically enjoy their life as chickens.  :)


Our Guineas have also hatched a clutch of keets - 22 we think.  The little critters are so tiny and FAST - they are hard to count.  Everything I've read on Guineas says they are notoriously bad parents, so far, ours have done an excellent job keeping their babies alive.  All 5 adults keep watch over the little ones, they seem to believe that it "takes a village" to raise a keet.  :)



The Summer Heat Has Returned

Well, Summer has returned with a vengence!  It was hot today and is supposed to be hotter than HE double hockey sticks for the next 3 days.  Our forecast is 107 and I may melt.  No matter what the weather is; the critters need to be cared for and I've added a Jersey Cross calf and two itty bitty pigs into the mix.  I was going to try to buy two calves, but now that I'm bottle feeding two, I'm sure glad I only got one.  :)

My Local Harvest page is really picking up and the word is getting out about what food can be obtained locally.

If you are in California, and you are looking at the Local Harvest Website, you probably already know about Proposition 37 - the California Right to Know - Label GMOs.  It is amazing to me that in this day and age, that the US (and California) require such strict labeling on all products, but the balk at the idea of Labeling GMOs.  50 countries, including 3rd world countries require GMOs to be labeled, but our legal system is so polluted by big business influence
that I don't know what to think of our elected officials.  Please check out the Callifornia Right to Know website at http://www.carighttoknow.org/ 

That's all for now.


A Beautiful Summer Day

Today is July 29th, I'm watching the antics of the 4 month old Boer goat kids, an occasional duck fly-by and a nice breeze blowing outside.  The temperature is approaching 90 and it's still cool in the house.  Quite unusual for this time of year.  I'm sure summer isn't done with us, the forecast is triple digits in the next week, so I'm gonna enjoy this weather now.

My husband, sister, daughter and I moved here in August 2003 with about 10 goats.  But I had a dream, even though I had a full-time job, I wanted a working, sustainable farm.  I wanted to raise our own meat and as much produce as I could.  I've achieved part of my dream - we are off the meat grid - our farm raised beef, pork, chicken and turkey are in the freezers.  This year, we'll add goat meat to that list.  

The garden is a work in progress, this year is much better because I finally got smart and have fenced the chickens out.  Chickens and gardens do not go hand in hand.  :)

The population at KaPa De' Le' Farm has grown, too.  We have 35+ goats - Alpine, Nigerian Dwarf, Boer and the lone La Mancha and her Al-Mancha kid. I have a Berkshire Hog (Jude) and have my fingers crossed that my first litter arrives as planned at the end of August.  I have a young Hampshire gilt, Stripes, that I hope to breed next spring. Then, of course, there are the butcher hogs:  the "boys" will be leaving us on Wednesday and Copperopolis should be ready by October.  This has been a good year for pork - I am sold out.

We have two new additions this month, Rustle, a 2 week old Jersey cross bull calf and Lucky a 3 month old Angus - Short Horn cross.  I'm looking to add one or two more bottle calves to the mix in the next month.

I've gotten a little out of control with poultry -- they (for the most part) are so little and easy to care for.  :)  There are many breeds of chickens, Muscovy Ducks and Midget White and White Holland Turkeys.  Oh and don't forget the guineas!  I've finally got the Guinea flock down to six and they are free range, making it much quieter around here.

Well, it's time to wrap up my first blog.  I hope you enjoyed learning a little about KaPa De' Le' Farm.  Stay tuned for more......

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