any farmers on here?

Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: Mark (PA) On: Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:24 pm

Grew up in farming... Yes it gets in your blood!

I always felt childhood on a farm was the best. not always fun or easy but overall I wouldn't have traded it for anything.

We farmed til I was 14. Then the Farm was rented out to other larger scale crop folks. We raised Hereford and Charolais cattle. Also had a few pigs and turkeys.

When we stopped farming I was heartbroken. I promised myself I would farm again someday if I could etc.

So about 7 years ago I was able to buy an older farmette and started out small again! You don't NEED alot of money to start in farming if you are willing to work. and I do mean WORK at it!

I started with a Farmall Super A and New Holland 66 baler (given to me for free). Cut hay with a sickle bar. Picked up a bar rake for $100 at auction. Again. I worked my A$$ off for a few years. making around 2000 bales of hay and selling it.

each year I try to do a little better and buy newer equipment (and it makes life easier!)

Now I only round bale with a Krone Kr160. Have a 95 New Holland TC35DA and IH350 Utility. Have a Mower Condition now (from 1978!) Still have the same $100 rake!

I also have invested in Purebred shorthorns and am lucky enough to have some excellent bloodlines in these cows I now have. Hopefully I will continue to breed them out and be able to sell the steers off in the future. All this to the help of a very well known shorthorn breeder near me.

So yea. it takes friends and hard work but if its in your heart... You'll want to do it!

It Also is a great asset to have a family behind you whenever needed and a good "off the farm" job for cash flow...

Thats my story so far!

Here is a picture of my daughter with 2 of my shorthorns that was taken last October

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Mark (PA)
 
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:28 pm

Nice Mark. Outstanding pasture shot :D
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: mason coal burner On: Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:45 pm

Sounds like a great life . I think a lot of farmers make the mistake of going into to much debt and or go to big .
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:50 pm

mcb, that's not farmin, that's grandiosity. Workin the land is always a risk. A whole lot of elements involved. A lot of it is about nothing more then hard work, livin within your means & a lot of faith. ;)
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: the snowman On: Fri Oct 26, 2012 10:34 pm

I was raised on a 200 acre farm as a boy and in my mid teens co-purchased a farm with a friend of mine. We owned 900 acres all tillable. We milked 120 cows and had over 300 head of young stock. We had a full time hired man so the farm supported three families as well as our own wants and desires. We would always be complaining about the ag market and how it either sucked or it was doing right by us.

We didn't just put all of our eggs in one basket. We had the dairy but also generated a lot of funds through other avenues, all were farm related. In my thirties I made the decision to walk away from farming. It was not that I didn't love the hard work or had a lack of cash flow or knowing I owned the land as far as you could see, I wanted a change and thought the grass was greener on the other side of the fence.

My partner bought my half of the farm and I took a different life path or paths. Two career changes later, I still miss the farm life. Within the next five or six years my wife and I will purchase a small farm around a hundred acres or so and I will grow some crops and raise a small herd of young stock. No more milking cows in my future. We always had a hen house full of chickens. It seemed like everything wanted to eat our chickens. Funny how sometimes life seems to come full circle. This is just my brief experience with farming for whatever it is worth.

The snowman.
the snowman
 
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 5:27 am

Speaking of eating things---I got woke up with the horses running in the upper pasture & the dogs goin nuts--I let the dogs out & grabbed my critter "22", bathrobe & all with spotting light--there were a half dozen coy-dogs down by the creek--the 2 grown dogs ran them back up into the woods along with a couple nicely placed shots on my part--have to wait till light to see if I got the one I think I got--meanwhile, my yellow lab puppy stuck to me like velcro watching the 2 adult dogs take care of the business at hand--I guess you had to be here, but the puppy was hilairious. She strutted back to the house with the other 2 like she had proudly dealt with the situation. toothy All are back in the house safe & sound. Time for a nice 3 scoop cup of coffee and some dog treats :)
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: oros35 On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:12 am

freetown fred wrote:You're young & healthy and already whining about the money part of it.
Plenty of land for sale up this way reasonable--$500.00 to $1000.00 an acre.

Not really whining about the money, just the fact that I don't have the land to use. Someday I'll figure out how to get some more land, then I can enjoy going broke maintaining it! Gotta spend your money somewhere, could be booze and whores but I'd prefer to spend it on diesel and tractors.

There is a 180 acre farm down the road from me, sold for 1.3mil a few years ago, they took the gas rights, logged it, and tore down all the buildings, and it's back on the market for $630K. I'd love to have that piece of property, no way I could afford that.
Another lot of 94 acres they are asking $399K, no worthwile buildings. It's hard to get a loan for property alone, And I don't have 20% available for a downpayment that most banks require right now.

With the gas leases around here, an acre is worth $3-6K alone for the gas rights, and $3-10K or more for the land. And everyone is holding on to their land to see what is going to happen with the gas industry.

That land price is tempting, but it would be a long drive to find a Nuke plant to work at!
oros35
 
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 9:44 am

UPDATE---I got a blood trail, no carcass. Piss on em, he'll bleed out somewhere up in the woods,hopefully, then his family can eat him. Talk about disfunctional :roll: Makes my brood look half way normal.
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: coalnewbie On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:12 am

how do you think you'd fit in with the rest of us inconsequentials


Yeah, Fred, these city boys imagine Ford 8Ns cutting grass and disappearing into the sunset with a misty setting. All looks very romantic. These bucolic scenes are not the real world, they are simply the photographers visceral reaction to the elemental violence of actual nature. Whoa, look at those big werds that CN is soo smart, perhaps even as smart as Sam --- well no one is that smart. Sigh, all it means is I looked up the word bucolic and how to use it in a sentence and these it was. Sure to impress everyone - I'm thinking of becoming a liberal.
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 1:20 pm

Hell Simon, I thought that was a plague, but crap, that was bubonic--so friggin close :clap: toothy
freetown fred
 
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 4:49 pm

I grew up on a farm that my grandfather bought in the 1940's. I'm not sure how many cows he started with, but he milked them by hand and did all the field work with horses. Dad just retired this year, 1800 animals and 1000 acres. Based on my experience on the farm when it was small, and when it was considerably larger...my recommendation is that anyone getting into farming needs to stay small enough so that no one cares what they're doing, or get big enough to employ enough people and pay enough taxes to have some "clout" in the local area.

I'm not sure what the cut-off is now, but a few years ago once you hit 200 milking cows or 300 "animals" (that includes heifers) on site, you were considered a "CAFO"...which means concentrated animal feeding operation. Once you have been blessed with label, guys in little pickups start making regular visits and looking at things like roof water runoff, where the drain in your shop goes, fuel tank containment systems, leachate from silage piles, and the big thing is tell tell you where and when you can spread manure.
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: NoSmoke On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 6:40 pm

In my opinion, dairy farmers have a right to complain.

To put it in terms that people on here can understand, and I am not talking down to anyone here, just explaining how completely unfair the dairy industry market is, I will put it this way...

It would be like the coal dealer driving to the mine, picking up railroad cars of coal, bringing it back to his place, mixing gravel in with the coal, finding markets for nut, pea, rice and stove coal with the gravel mixed in, selling every pound of it off, then calling up the mine and telling them what they think the price is now worth; 2 weeks after the coal has left the mine and is completely used up by consumers. Then the coal mine would have to figure out what the next price per ton would be in two weeks when the dealer decides what the coal they are mining today, will be worth in two weeks based on the whim of the dealer. That is exactly what happens to dairy farmers!

The creameries come to our farms, pick up all our milk, take it back to their creameries and water down heavily with water. (They also add sugar to it for "taste", but that is another topic). Then they sell it to the American Public, then tell the farmers two weeks after it has been taken from their farms, sold and consumed and tell them what they think the value of that milk is worth. Somehow we are expected to make adjustments on how we produce it so that we stay in business.

Now what other industry works with a marketing system like that?

Every dollar per 100 weight that is under $18 cwt, we lose about $40,000 per month. Currently the price is $16 cwt so we are losing $80,000 per month so that we can work 18 hour days, 7 days per week, 365 days per year. That is the workers/owners. The farm itself, with 1200 cows, never stops milking. Whether it is right now, or 2:30 AM on Christmas morning, we are milking cows. But with losses like these (80 grand a month) how can a farm even begin to budget for an issue like that when we have no idea if the price in two weeks will be $18 pew cwt or $14 cwt since it is based on the whim of the creameries?

In my town of 700 people we have 10 dairy farms...last month three went bankrupt. That is unheard of. It is also why dairy farmers are committing suicide instead of watching their farms be foreclosed. It is a sad state of affairs on American Dairy Farms right now and until we stem the flow of milk being imported from Canada, and reconfigure how the pricing of milk is accomplished, it is not going to get any better.
NoSmoke
 
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:50 pm

Kinda interesting how Canada is getting $30.00 a hundred. The govt. is way involved up there. I used to have a couple friends around Union, Me. many yrs ago, they were dairy & point being, things haven't changed much--my neighbor just left & we were talking about your post, he milks 40 jerseys & the only thing he had to say about your 1200, was--damn, I can go home & sleep well tonight knowing that your buddy is getting screwed 30 times worse then me. Back to it my friend--ya either love it or hate it. :( Like you stated somewhere--farmers tend to do a bit of everything to keep the old homesteads running.
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 9:30 pm

Hey Nosmoke, how do you guys produce hot water for the milking parlor?
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Re: any farmers on here?

PostBy: mason coal burner On: Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:10 pm

No smoke that is why I would want to get into selling raw milk . Screw the creamery and the government a-holes . Just sell direct to the consumer . Farms that sell raw milk are getting from 5-10 $ per gallon . Farmer up the road from me gets 5$/ gallon . He milk about 40 head a day they sell other things like homemade icecream , beef , pork , chicken , eggs , etc. I love everything they sell . There milk sells out every day . If people knew what the creameries really did to the milk everyone would drink it raw . Check out ( mark mcfee ) on YouTube . He owns a big dairy farm out in California that sells only raw milk products . He talks about the suicide rates among dairy farmers . Very sad . That's what happens with government controls . They need to get out of bed with the government .
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