Moving on ... With the hay pasture still in place and not enough free land to go around (Yeah, I know there isn't any free land I was just dreaming that part) I have decided on a few things. First the only bred cow I will be keeping is B-Day! I have had her since she was days old and I can rider her. No, those photos you see aren't photo shopped. She really is a rideable cow. (Is rideable really spelled like that?) I will also be cutting down the number of roping calves I keep each year. I have two larger roping steers that will be going to a new home sometime Next week. They keep jumping the fence and are costing me in fencing supplies more then they are worth. So It just makes sense to sell them and then go practice team roping at my Uncle's house. So that will cut me down to one cow and 6 roping calves. Smaller calves will help us produce more hay as they will eat less grass from the hay pasture and we can sell any extra hay we have and bring in a small paycheck to help pay for feed for the sheep and cattle through the winter.
The cattle plans are set and that is what we are going to do. Not only that but If I keep any more cattle then that and I make a profit from buying and selling them the Government says that it is no longer a hobby and I will have to pay farm taxes. Without owning land, being able to file head of house hold or claim any dependents I would have to pay really high rates and since I am only 15 and there are laws that prevent me from having to many hours of work to bring in the money needed to pay those high taxes I am kind of creating a bill that my parents would end up paying. (And we all wonder why the Government is in such a mess?? LOL)
So I will own one cow and 6 roping calves. As for the Alpaca ... I will be leaving it as a total of 5. Charlie, our Geld, will stay and so will Juneau as he is our stud. Hope and Wendy will both stay as our breeding females. I am unsure right now as to what I will do with Jorden. He is registered and from great blood lines but again I can't keep them all so right now I am thinking of selling him. As for the Goats ... I am having no luck breeding them. It has been two years with not one baby on the ground. I thought that if I got some babies this year everything would be fine and I would keep growing that flock too. The truth is that if that flock doesn't grow through breeding I will not be purchasing anymore. For one reason there are no breeders within reasonable distance from us to purchase from and the second is that it will mess up the tax plan Mom and Dad had set up for the farm this year. (Yes, there is that nasty tax thing again. LOL)
That leaves the sheep ... Oh my lovely sheep. First, there is Carrie, Fudgie and Turtle. I plan to keep them and harvest their fleece each year but I have no plan to breed them at this point in the game. For the Cotswold, We have four that will be bred to Chief each year and One cross that will be bred to a different ram in a few years. I will also be keeping my 4 original shetland ewes to breed to Elliot and I will be keeping all this years girls to breed in a few years to a different ram. My goal is to have a total of 10 Shetland Ewes and 10 Cotswold or Cotswold crosses ewes and a Ram for each flock. Mom has convinced me that my nitch might be in the soft fleece we are learning to breed by cross breeding. I have googled and googled and can't find any one else that is breeding this cross breed and with Charlie running around here none of us can keep our hands off his fleece. It really is that soft but we will see when we get the products back from the mill what we really think.
With that said only one of the crossbred lambs was a ewe. So I have been trying to work out a deal to make sure that the Quads and Triplets Have a good life on a fiber farm after they leave here but that has fallen through and now I am thinking Mom is right when she says we will have to sell the boys as show lambs. I also know that my new plan means that Pickles and Pascal will also be moving on. No it isn't fair but it is the best working plan I can come up with ... So what do you think?