In general, there’s an AllOrNothism idea out there that if conventional animal production produces greenhouse gasses, then all animal husbandry should cease immediately. I respectfully disagree. I understand and respect the choice to eliminate some or all animal products from your diet on moral grounds about the rights of animals or the ethics of killing, although I don’t share the same moral concerns myself. But I am skeptical that we can make any kind of food system that’s intended to feed any kind of industrialized society work without any animal inputs at all.
We’ve been keeping quail for over a year now on the Rocking Homestead. It was something we thought we had researched pretty well, but no amount of reading really prepared us for it. Not that it’s been exceedingly difficult, but it was different than expected.
Here are some things we’ve learned so far.
Sometimes I think you wouldn’t be able to tell by looking at my current homestead that I’ve actually done most of this stuff before. I’ve got several years of gardening experience, I’ve kept food producing animals (well, just bees), and I’ve been around the composting block a few times before too. But everything is different in this home, and I feel like I’m learning it all from scratch.
It snowed today, and I’m thinking about my garden. Curled up under a heated blanket, with Freja asleep in my lap, and Elijah snuggled up next to me watching Iron Man, today is the perfect day to get started. This is what homesteading is all about. A good garden is the cornerstone of a homestead.