Beginning Farmers – Practical Tools for Successful Family Farming
UVM Farmer Training Program Information Session from the University of Vermont – August, 2021
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When getting into livestock farming there are a great number of things to consider before you bounce into production. There are different types of livestock you can keep, which are chickens, rabbits, cattle, ducks, lamb, goats, pigs or mounts, and are all cared for in a different way.
To become successful in livestock farming you need to know your options, goals and resources. Understanding what you want to accomplish will help you in shaping up your farm so that it can be successful.
And so why do you want to get into livestock farming? It’s very essential that you identify and evaluate what your goals are.
Do you want to raise livestock because you want to supply your family with healthy food? You may just want to raise livestock to manage forage? Or perhaps you want to produce your own livestock products and sell them for extra money? Either way placing goals is no doubt important before you pursue your dream.
After you have made your decision on what type of animals you want to raise, consider the land in which you are going to farm the livestock. Consider the size of your land, the laws regarding farming livestock and property zoning. If your land is not very big you may consider raising birds but if you have large land you can keep, cattle, lamb and other large livestock.
You should also determine the sort of operation you desire. If you want to manage cows determine if you wish to raise cattle for meat or cattle for milk or if you wish to raise laying chickens and meat chickens. For milk production you can choose between goat milk, sheep milk or cow milk. You can just raise all of them.
The type of breed is also important so make certain you get knowledge of the several types of livestock. For example if you wish to raise beef production cows that graze on pasture the cattle that strives well on pasture is the Belted Galloway. This goes for the other animals, certain breeds will produce better than other breeds.
– Your Resources
Ask yourself if you have enough resources to start out your project? Will you have enough finances to invest in livestock farming? Do you have the equipment and facilities? Setting up livestock requires that you have enough resources and are prepared to make investments of some money.