Monday, October 31, 2011

Snow Days

This snow and freeze has already melted, as that is the way it goes in Colorado. But here are a few snaps of the weather our turkeys chose to endure outside. The turkeys choose to sleep in our aspen tree, and still made it through the 17 degree night up there.

The world is covered in ice, but the sun is coming up, so that won't last long.

 All of our fences were wearing a coat that morning, they must have been cold, too.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Early Snow

I don't sleep well on nights like last night. Although I got an extra hour of sleep since the power went out and my alarm didn't go off.

We busted our butts yesterday getting ready for the storm. Larry disharged the sprinkler system and pumped out the irrigation system - to ensure no pipe cracks all away around. We patched up some holes in the greenhouse in hopes of protecting my newly sprouted lettuce. The tomatoes were all in decline already, so I picked what I could, in the hopes some would still ripen in a window sill. I cut down all the basil, because I'd hate to see it wilted and ruined. Looks like we are having pesto for dinner tonight!

I also picked all the rest of the turnips outside, so they wouldn't get ruined. They had stopped growing, but were hanging out nicely in the soil. I fed all the greens to the sheep as an extra treat.

We scooped up all the egg layers and made sure they went to sleep inside their truck house, instead of under it or in bushes. We searched for any errant birds and made sure they went to the turkey shed or the barn. EXCEPT the big turkeys that sleep in the trees. We got down the ones we could reach, but most sleep high in an aspen tree, and we couldn't reach them!

The young birds and meat birds still had their tent on the ground. I really wanted to stick a heat lamp in there, and admit I didn't have the nerve to check on them this morning. Larry claims that they would be OK, as the tent stays pretty warm with all of them in there, and being that the ground was dry as they went in, they would stay dry and warm in there without a heat lamp. I think tonight they will need one, or they will all need to be moved to the shed or to the truck. This is a pretty intense storm for October, and I know it's only temporary.

I drove to work completely stressed out about this. I know the sheep are OK in the barn, and everyone that is inside a structure will be OK today. I worry about the ducks and hope they came into their house. They were still on the pond the last I looked last night. I worry about the big turkeys in the trees. Tonight I plant to try and catch them before they start roosting and get them into the shed. The more birds in there, the warmer it will be for everyone.  I hope we found everyone - anyone left sleeping outside on the ground last night probably would not make it, so I hope we didn't miss anyone!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Turkey Time

I know I know, it's not even Halloween yet!  I'm still working on my costume and my nugget's costume and I haven't even started decorating yet, but no fret I'll get there.

But it is time to start thinking about turkeys! Those little goof balls are now roosting in our aspen tree, and on our pergola. Our back porch is no longer a safe place to hang out. Good thing the cool weather is keeping us inside anyhow. But never fear, the pergola will be empty by the end of November, as we are hoping turkeys will all end up in your tummies!  We'll keep a efw and try breeding again. And I am very partial to the ones I hatched myself this year and kind of want to keep them, too!  But there are plenty to go around.

We weren't very successful with the double-breasted breeds this year, so our birds are mostly going to be 20 pounds or less. The likely weet spots are 9-12 pounds (heritage breed hens) and 15-18 pounds (heritage breed toms). So if that suits your needs, go ahead and reserve one using this form.

If we don't have space left, I will return your check to you and let you know. But right now, we only have a few reservations (and I owe an email to 2 of you letting you know that I did add you to my spreadsheet!)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Colorado's Right to Farm Statute (Colo. Rev. Stat §§ 35-3.5-101 to 35-3.5-103)

§ 35-3.5-101. Legislative declaration

It is the declared policy of the state of Colorado to conserve, protect, and encourage the development and improvement of its agricultural land for the production of food and other agricultural products. The general assembly recognizes that, when nonagricultural land uses extend into agricultural areas, agricultural operations often become the subject of nuisance suits. As a result, a number of agricultural operations are forced to cease operations, and many others are discouraged from making investments in farm improvements. It is the purpose of this article to reduce the loss to the state of Colorado of its agricultural resources by limiting the circumstances under which agricultural operations may be deemed to be a nuisance. It is further recognized that units of local government may adopt ordinances or pass resolutions that provide additional protection for agricultural operations consistent with the interests of the affected agricultural community, without diminishing the rights of any real property interests.

§ 35-3.5-102. Agricultural operation deemed not nuisance--state agricultural commission--attorney fees--exceptions

(1)(a) Except as provided in this section, an agricultural operation shall not be found to be a public or private nuisance if the agricultural operation alleged to be a nuisance employs methods or practices that are commonly or reasonably associated with agricultural production.
    (b) An agricultural operation that employs methods or practices that are commonly or reasonably associated with agricultural production shall not be found to be a public or private nuisance as a result of any of the following activities or conditions:
          (I) Change in ownership;
          (II) Nonpermanent cessation or interruption of farming;
          (III) Participation in any government sponsored agricultural program;
          (IV) Employment of new technology; or
          (V) Change in the type of agricultural product produced.
(2)(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section to the contrary, an agricultural operation shall not be found to be a public or private nuisance if such agricultural operation:
          (I) Was established prior to the commencement of the use of the area surrounding such agricultural operation for nonagricultural activities;
          (II) Employs methods or practices that are commonly or reasonably associated with agricultural production; and
          (III) Is not operating negligently.
   (b) Employment of methods or practices that are commonly or reasonably associated with agricultural production shall create a rebuttable presumption that an agricultural operation is not operating negligently.
(3) The court may, pursuant to sections 13-16-122 and 13-17-102, C.R.S., award expert fees, reasonable court costs, and reasonable attorney fees to the prevailing party in any action brought to assert that an agricultural operation is a private or public nuisance. Nothing in this section shall be construed as restricting, superseding, abrogating, or contravening in any way the provisions of sections 25-7-138(5), C.R.S., and 25-8-501.1(8), C.R.S.
(4) As used in this article, “agricultural operation” has the same meaning as “agriculture”, as defined in section 35-1-102(1).
(5) Any ordinance or resolution of any unit of local government that makes the operation of any agricultural operation a nuisance or provides for the abatement thereof as a nuisance under the circumstances set forth in this section is void; except that the provisions of this subsection (5) shall not apply when an agricultural operation is located within the corporate limits of any city or town on July 1, 1981, or is located on a property that the landowner voluntarily annexes to a municipality on or after July 1, 1981.
(6) This section shall not invalidate any contracts made prior to September 1, 2000, but shall be applicable only to contracts and agreements made on or after September 1, 2000.
(7) A local government may adopt an ordinance or pass a resolution that provides additional protection for agricultural operations; except that no such ordinance or resolution shall prevent an owner from selling his or her land or prevent or hinder the owner in seeking approval to put the land into alternative use.

§ 35-3.5-103. Severability

If any provision of this article or the application thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this article which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this article are declared to be severable.