My Tiny Farm

HELLO! I hope this wonderful season has been blessing everyone’s family and friends with food from gardens and bugs for your flock! I am going to switch it up today! I wanted to talk to you about my tiny farm.


My tiny farm has been growing lately. We went from 30+ chickens and a couple ducks and turkeys, to well…a lot more birds. Our female duck (her name is Mama) and her husband (Shadow) have hatched us 11 out of the 13 baby ducklings. Our neighbors’ ducks went wild so we ended up taking in 20 more ducklings and currently Mama is on a new clutch of 13 eggs. Her favorite number is 13, bad luck to some, but her favorite and who am I to tell her how many babies she can have. Also, for those who are new to the duck world clutch means nest of eggs for ducks. I actually just learned this and saying it does bring a smirk to my face, because the more flock lingo I learn, the cooler I feel. Right? Anyone else feel this way when you learn a new word or just want to sound like you know what you’re talking about? No shame here, we all feel this in some way. Needless to say, we are now up to 31 ducks and 13 eggs (all fertile and hopefully hatch! Eeeeee!)


Raising a flock is not always so welcoming though. With the beautiful comes the ugly. And ladies and gentlemen, I am an ugly crier and when I lose one of my flock it breaks my heart and my husband gets to see the ugly cry sometimes. I wrote a blog called Let’s Talk Chicken. In it I expressed in short, my fear of turkeys and how I have been using the challenge to bond with them. We had two, a white and bronze hen. Well, we lost my beautiful white jenny to heat stroke and organ failure. She was a Broad-Breasted White turkey and their DNA has been basically genetically changed due to the past of adding hormones into the eggs and into the chicks. Luckily, they chose to stop this due to the effect it was having on us humans and our flocks. My jenny’s name was Precious because she was simply that. She made me change my whole perspective on turkeys. 3 years ago, we had a beautiful heritage black hen named Molly. Molly was stunning, we brushed her feathers daily and took very good care of her. After a year though, she started leaving the house for days and one day while walking my 2 year old to the swing, she thought it was okay to attack us. She was out of control and nothing like herself. Needless to say, she made me officially terrified of turkeys. To lose Precious was hard and now Bronzey is alone. Which brings us to 30+ Chickens, 40+ Ducks and 1 turkey and 3 new friends.

We all have been there when the ticks have been out of control and this year is seriously awful! So, I decided it was time to bring in the loudest, bossiest, most tick-eating machines I have known, Guinea Fowl. PLUS, THEY ARE GREAT COMPANY FOR TURKEYS! We used to have 13 and when Covid hit we butchered some and others we sold for decent money. I ended up selling them all though and this year I can’t stand the amount of ticks I have seen. One guinea fowl hen will eat up to 400 ticks PER DAY! EVERY DAY!!! Our neighbor, Kay, has a beautiful farm and has so many she was kind enough to sell me 3. I tried to get girls because I so badly want babies. I definitely will not be butchering them again (don’t get me wrong, they tasted amazing! Light and dark meat with bright yellow fat.. I just need them now more than ever for the ticks!). They will choose bugs over food. If you have a bug issue whether it be boxelder, crickets, ticks, fleas or ants, they get the job done. We have almost 11 acres. I would technically want one guinea fowl per 2 acres, so roughly 5. I chose 3, and hopefully we will get lots of babies. Also, they can cross breed with chickens. Beautiful creatures that they create. Check some pictures out next time your bored and online.

4 years ago, our tiny farm had 4 goats, 2 Jersey cows, 1 piggy and many, many rabbits. I miss these animals a lot! We chose to camp more this year while the kids were smaller and more into it. So, these things will come.

We have a garden for our family, a garden for our flock and we still do have some bunnies. This spring we were blessed with 8 mixed bunnies. If you raise rabbits, the best thing to do is let your yard go. When the grass and weeds get high, cut it down and feed it to the rabbits! Pasture-raised meat is the best meat. We supplement ours with Heinold rabbit feed and alfalfa cubes. Having the land to raise them on though is so wonderful. God gives us so much to use and sometimes we feel we have to spend, spend, spend, when nature has a lot for us and God is just waiting for us to see it.

My tiny farm is growing and each year we will be expanding. I have dreams of raising some more livestock, but for now we have so much to be grateful for.

Our Tiny Farm

· 11 rabbits

· 30+ chickens

· 40+ ducks (13 being eggs)

· 5 beautiful barn cats

· 1 13yr old leopard gecko

· 2 fun loving dogs (Olde English Bulldog and a Dachshund mix)

· 2 gardens

I can’t wait to share my tiny farm news with you and have you be a part of our growth! I’m praying for a chance to have honey bees, livestock and more!

-Amanda B.


Published by Amanda B.

Our family homestead began 6 years ago when we decided to buy a home in the country in the beautiful state of Michigan. I was on a mission to have it all but no idea where to begin. So, our dream house found us! I know, I know, that doesn’t sound right, but it did! An older gentleman that shopped at our local pet food store had approached my family about having a home for sale and once we saw it, we knew there was no way we could get approved for the amount he was asking. BUT this man was an angel disguised as a human here on earth. We called him up and he met our daughter (my mother’s 1st of 3 grandbabies) and when I explained to him the sad news he simply said, “I have known your family for a long time, your mother worked at my kennel and holds a piece of my heart and I do not care how much you get approved for. I want that little girl (pointing to my dear Abby who was 6 months old) to have a forever home. When you get approved by a loan company come find me and buy my home.” With tears of joy and tears of so much weight being lifted off my shoulders I hugged him with the biggest and hardest hug I could gather up and we went through the home buying process. 6 years later, I am here in this very home to share my love for poultry and homesteading. That entire step of homesteading started with chickens! We have always been in love with animals and nutrition is my number one priority for my animals. My family’s business is Holistic Pet Store, feeding raw, dehydrated raw and the finest foods for pets and holistic and homeopathic supplements for people and pets. We take nutrition to a different level. So, finding a poultry feed that fit in was my task and I was up for the job. I of course brought in organic, soy free, and even things to add such a safflowers and sunflower seeds, but as my family grew, this $48 per bag of feed for 30+ poultry was not in the budget plan. We went from a family of 3 and a couple dogs and chickens to a family of 5, 4 dogs, 7 cats, 3 guinea pigs, 20 rabbits, 4 goats, 2 cows, 30+ chickens, 20+ ducks, 3 turkeys and 1 pig. So, I took my knowledge of feed and started fermenting everything. (I’ll explain this process to you soon in another blog post, it will blow your mind!!!) Every animal’s feed had been fermented and costs were minimized tremendously and it seemed as though nothing could go wrong…but it did. The Words that Changed Everything When Evie my 3rd beautiful baby girl came into our world, my job was on hold which meant my money used to pay for the animals’ feed was no longer available. Things became solely on my husband’s shoulders. He was prepared and had budgeted for most of it, but money just seemed to disappear. So, we did what it was time to do. We sent the cows for butcher and rented the goats out for parties and events, and cut costs where we could. Which sadly meant buying the cheapest feed. We did the usual big box store brands. We thought this cannot be too bad and everything will be fine. The first few months everything was okay but we slowly noticed our chickens lost their shiny feathers and softness. They even had weaker immune systems and we had lost chickens more than we ever had the years prior. We had no sign of Avian Influenza, but we had chickens dying at random moments for no reason. I truly felt it couldn’t get worse and then I started cracking eggs and the yolks were gray, the beautiful orange yolks dwindled to flavorless, bland grays and pale yellows. At this time, I felt like the odds were against us and was about to sell everything I owned and when I was able to work, I would start up with a new flock. The next day we had our wonderful truck driver from our distributor, John A. Van Den Bosch, come in. When I told him the news and was to my wits end, he said the magic words that changed everything, “Have you ever heard of NatureServe?” At first, I thought to myself maybe, then quickly realized I never had. He told me about the company and how Van Den Bosch carries them and that he truly feels it is the perfect fit for what I am looking for. When I looked them up, by golly-gee he was right! NatureServe was everything I was looking for, they used fermented probiotics and digestive enzymes and ESSENTIAL OILS. Combined, it was an immune system booster created by man with 100% of natures bounty. I was blown away. HOW DID I MISS THIS! I am sure if you are reading this you may think I am kind of crazy but let me fill you in on a life of one of my chickens. They receive fresh water every other day with essential oils in it to help prevent respiratory issues, as well as keep the immune system stable. They have free access 24/7 to almost 200 pounds of feed that is mixed with safflower and sunflower seeds. As a treat we chose fermented broccoli sprouts or flaxseed sprouts. They have almost 11 acres of grass and wild herbs and flowers to rummage through and a medium sized pond to find some yummy tadpoles, baby frogs, and crickets to eat. But when winter hit, it was fermented sprouts and feed they relied on the most. To find an affordable but not breaking the bank food that fit my lifestyle and ethics was hard until that magical day I was introduced to NatureServe. NatureServe is a company based on family and faith. They use the highest quality ingredients while going above and beyond with what they are putting in their feed. For example, they use: Fermented pre/probiotics and digestive enzymes to support your flock’s digestive tract Flaxseed for a safe form of Omega-3 fatty acids and fiber Alfalfa, THIS ONE I LOVE! Reduces seasonal depression in chickens, helps hens lay all winter or during a usual off season, and is an amazing protein source Diatomaceous Earth is a natural de-wormer, and with its main ingredient being silica it will help give your poultry a healthy heart Marigold may be the best ingredient added to this feed! Marigolds help the skin’s ability to heal faster as well as reduces eye infections from even starting. This flower is also a natural anti inflammatory which is wonderful for chickens that free range on several acres all day Oregano and Thyme to support immune system The feeds are produced through Belstra Milling in DeMotte, Indiana. With NatureServe’s ingredients being the safest and the healthiest, I know what I am putting into my flock is of the highest quality. After all, don’t we do this so we can feed our families the healthiest meat? As a homesteader we use the whole chicken. The chicken’s meat is for food, the bones and certain organs are used in stocks and broths. Why feed a food that is destroying an animal’s immune system when you can feed a layer that can excel your poultry’s life and not only improve their way of living but your own. What change came since being on NatureServe Stronger flocks Longer egg laying duration Strong shells No issues with blocked eggs or eggs breaking inside the chicken due to optimal nutrition Golden orange yolks Healthy chicks, poults, and ducklings Nutritionally satisfied poultry (no aggression due to lack of nutrition or hunger) Beyond beautiful feathers and colors I can’t wait to touch base on more topics with you! Keep your eyes peeled for more fun blogs by yours truly, Amanda B.