Alalchua Goat Herd

This week we received four beautiful goats from Alalchua, FL. Homer, Sophia, Kate & Pippa. This was a huge effort by many people, The Community Foundation of Sarasota funded the construction of the goat enclosure (including a new home for Pablito), our beloved volunteers help build it, and the people who have cared for these goats for so long found transport all the way here! The goats are pleased and we are so thankful that all these folks came together to secure the happiness of this herd of wonderful goats.

Homer – or as I call him Tim the Enchanter

 

Sophia – Mother of Kate & Pippa

 

Kate & Pippa

Sanctuary Updates and Quarterly Hay Drive

Visit from Everyday Blessings

Last weekend we were graced with a visit from a wonderful group of children from Everyday Blessings. They were a hit with all the animals and brought a lot of smiles to the farm.

Showing a Heritage Turkey to Visitors

Child Petting a Cow

Child Petting a Cow

 

Christening the Rabbit Refuge

While here the children helped us break in the new Rabbit Refuge. It was everything we had hoped for. The kids had plenty of room to interact with rabbits and the rabbits had room to give them a good chase 🙂

Rabbit Refuge

Thank You, Designing Daughters

We knew we needed a better space for the bunnies and we wanted an area where they could dig (without escaping) and live more natural lives. We also wanted a space where people could interact with the rabbits. Designing Daughters answered our prayers with a grant to build the Rabbit Refuge. The visit from Everyday Blessings was a perfect example of their generosity in action. It not only affected the general well-being of our rabbits but also provided an interactive learning opportunity for a great group of kids. Thank you, Designing Daughters.

Thank You, Community Foundation

We would also like to thank the Community Foundation of Sarasota for a generous grant to build a new, multi-purpose goat enclosure. We have several goats on a waiting list and this new habitat will provide a safe haven for them as well an area for special needs goats (like our darling Pablito!). We are just starting construction and will post updates along the way.

Pablito Update

Blind Baby GoatSpeaking of Pablito, our little farm favorite is progressing nicely. He has started eating hay and grain and is starting to interact with the adult goats through the fence. He has also developed a strange but touching friendship with a pigeon. The pigeon rests with him in his goat hut and sleeps with him at night. They are an odd pair, but everyone needs a friend.

It takes a lot of hay to grow this big!

Hay Drive

Looking for Help with Hay

It’s that time again when we ask you to dig deep and help the animals at Florida Rescue Farm have fresh hay for the next 3 months. We are trying to raise $500 for a trailer of hay which provides feed and bedding for these wonderful animals. This has been a very dry season and the grass is not as plentiful as it usually is, so it is particularly critical to have enough hay to supplement the diets of all the critters. Any gift helps us to reach our goal. Please click here to donate now.

We’re on Facebook!

FacebookAfter many requests, we are finally on Facebook. Check out our latest posts here https://www.facebook.com/floridarescuefarm

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Let’s Talk Chickens

This all began with chickens. Our first animals on the farm were a flock of four hens and one rooster. Despite our initial blunders, we persevered and now have a thriving flock of 37 hens and 11 roos. Chickens are fantastic animals, but many are abandoned around their second year when they cease to lay a lot of eggs and many are discarded when the baby chick grows up to be a rooster.  It’s a shame for both the chickens and the humans as chickens are so useful around the homestead. They turn your compost, weed your fallow beds and keep the insects down. Not to mention, there’s not much cuter than a chatty old hen.

We would like to introduce you to the newest members of the flock…

Lucky – Broiler Hen to Flock Mate

Lucky was scheduled for slaughter the day after we received her. A person was selling her and her flock mates for food. We received the ‘broiler chicken’ from a person who wanted to save her. She was 7 months old. Broiler chickens are slaughtered at 7 months old because they are more tender for the consumer and with their genetically altered bodies they typically don’t live much longer. Initially, we had very little hope for Lucky. Due to her unnatural size, she had to be bathed because she could not clean herself. The other chickens sensed her weakness and would flip her over and she could not right herself. It was terrible and I wondered if we had done the right thing. But things have gradually gotten better. Although she is obviously genetically altered, and not in a good way, she has a good diet and gets plenty of exercise and this has seemed to help greatly. She now has a flock, can clean herself and spends the day pecking and scratching in the grass (and no one flips her over anymore).

The Boys – Rusty & Mr. Cluck Cluck

We really try not to take roosters, but when we can we break our rules, just to help these guys.

Rusty is a young turken roo. Two wonderful people in Miami found him living in the parking garage of their building. It took much work to catch him and then a 4-hour drive to bring him here and they did not even flinch at all the effort for one little roo.

Mr. Cluck Cluck (pictured below with Flora) was also abandoned and found his way to a caring person who helped him find his way here.

Flora – the Alpha Hen

Occasionally there is an odd thing that happens to hens that have a flock without a rooster. One of the hens takes on the characteristics of a rooster. This can include a more aggressive attitude and even feathers that tend to resemble rooster feathers. I believe this is what happened to Flora. Apparently, her original owners couldn’t handle an assertive chicken like Flora, and she ended up in the yard of some wonderful people who captured her and brought her here. She’s giving the roos a hard time, but we are delighted to have her, she is a quite a unique lady.

Rosa & Mini

These ladies were brought to us by a local wildlife rescue organization. Rosa is a sweetheart and Mini, although a bit nervous, is fitting in quite well.

Acorn – Butternut’s baby

Little chicks are adorable, but we really try not to have too many as we need the space for rescues. That being said, when we find a mother hen who has been on her eggs for some time we usually let her have them. It just seems mean to take the eggs after so much time and dedication from the mother.  Our hen Butternut does take advantage of this by hiding her nest and then popping out with babies. This year she had a nest in Jelly and Peanut’s goat shed. She came out with one little chick and none of the other eggs hatched. So we welcome Acorn, one-of-a-kind.

Valentino – 1 Year Anniversary

It would be wrong to mention all these new fowl and not mention that Valentino, our blind roo, celebrated his 1 year anniversary on the farm. The person who found him went through so much to get him here and has continued to check on him and support him the entire time. We are so glad to see him enjoying his remaining years on the farm.

Goat Anniversaries

January and February were a big time for goats last year. We are celebrating the one year anniversary of the Tornado Goats. A year ago in January a tornado ripped through our neighborhood and killed two very kind people, Kade & Steve. We were fortunate to be able to adopt their goats and one month later we were blessed with three babies from the herd. The youngsters are a year old and are thriving in this environment.

Also, last January we adopted Alfred and Ginger, two darling Boer goats from Fort Myers. They are so sweet and have really blended in well.

Let us not forget the veterans of the sanctuary, Jelly & Peanut. Two years ago in January Jelly was our first official rescue. She and her buddy Peanut are so fantastic that we opened our home to all the other goats and have not regretted a day since.

Quarterly Hay Drive

It’s that time again when we ask our friends and supporters to help us with our quarterly hay order. For $500 we can get enough hay for the next 3 months, and by buying in bulk we receive a discount on the hay. This is feed for the goats and cows as well as bedding for the chickens, rabbits, ducks and geese. We really try not to ask often and appreciate all that you do when you can. If you’d like to donate to the Hay Drive click here.

Recurring Donations

Great news – we have been accepted by the Giving Partner to include our non-profit on their website. This is nice for anyone wanting to read more about our organization and it really helps with recurring donations. Many of you have tried to use PayPal for recurring donations and sadly PayPal is not really up to the task. This is where the Giving Partner comes in. You can go to our page at https://thegivingpartner.guidestar.org/nonprofit.aspx?orgId=1161770 and click the donation button in the upper right of the page. Here you can donate once or set up recurring donations. Recurring donations are a tremendous help to the sanctuary. It gives us something we can rely on and really helps offset the cost of grain, medicine, and vet care.

Amazon Smile

To those of you using Amazon Smile, you should know we received our first check from them! Thanks for including us on your Amazon purchases. If you are unaware of Amazon Smile it is a service by Amazon that donates .5% of eligible sales to your non-profit of choice. Go to https://smile.amazon.com/ch/47-2475489 when you order from Amazon to choose Florida Rescue Farm as your charity of choice.

A Huge Thank You

We want to send out a special thank you to Suzanne. She helped us to rehome three pigs is dire peril. She had 48 hours to find a home for these guys or they were going to be put down. She succeeded where all others had failed. Thank you Suzanne, you really are a rehoming ninja.

We also want to thank all our friends and supporters. The donors who keep everything running and everyone fed, the adopters who take in these wonderful animals, the folks who find animals and take the time to find them a safe haven and to those of you who send us your good thoughts and prayers which help us to continue doing what we do.

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Giving Thanks

We live in uncertain times and it is at times like these that we are reminded of all the wonderful people who reach out to help us care for these remarkable animals. Thanks to our supporters our triannual hay drive was a success! Because of you, all the critters will have feed and bedding for the next 4 months.

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We also want to thank United Methodist Church in Pinellas Park for their donation of pumpkins left over from their Halloween Pumpkin Patch. They were a big hit with the cows & chickens.

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It’s not just donations we’re thankful for. We are also thankful to introduce the newest member of the farm, Stormy the roo. Although we don’t take in many roosters, Stormy is young and he fit right in with the flock. He is second in command to Gemini and already has a few ladies of his own.

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Remember us during the holidays

There are many ways you can help while you do your holiday shopping. We have opened an online store where you can purchase Florida Rescue Farm shirts, hoodies, bags, etc. Check it out here.

We are also members of Amazon Smile. By clicking here or on the image below you designate Florida Rescue Farm as your charity of choice and Amazon donates .5% of your purchase to help support all our farm friends.

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Thank you for all your support, we couldn’t do this without you.

 

 

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Introducing Pee Wee the Sheep

We have been graced with a wonderful new family member. This is Pee Wee, he’s an eight-month-old ram lamb. He had a pretty rough start in life until he was adopted by a pair of animal lovers. However, they knew he needed a home with other animals like him so they drove three hours to bring him to the farm. Over the past week, we had him neutered and have been waiting to introduce him to the herd (and get in some free-range foraging) until he was healed . Today was his day, and he did great!

ram lamb
Pee Wee’s first forage on the farm

 

 

Pee Wee and Fred
Pee Wee and Fred

 

Pee Wee meeting Jelly & Peanut
Pee Wee meeting Jelly & Peanut

 

Pee Wee with the herd :)
Pee Wee with the herd 🙂

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Springtime on the Farm

Spring has hit the farm, with the last gasp of good weather the goats are frolicking, and baby birds have arrived.

A pair of wild ducks graced the pond with 27 ducklings,

ducklings

and we welcomed into our sanctuary a young, very lovable rooster from Miami. His name is Larry and we are glad he made the journey.

pullet

Farm Updates

Valentino continues to improve. His eye swelling is gone and he is able to find food and water without assistance. He even has a flock of young hens who like to visit.

pullets and rooster

The boers, Alfred and Ginger seem very pleased to have a herd and now spend their mornings foraging.

goats foraging

The black bellied whistling ducks are starting to return in great numbers.

black bellied whistling ducks

That’s all for now. As always, thanks for your love and support we couldn’t do this without you.

 

A Busy Time on the Farm

We have had quite a lot going on these days, with new arrivals, baby goat cuteness and, of course, some cage building, our days have been very full. Let’s start with Valentino, our new family member,  a blind rooster from Miami.

Valentino the Roo

Blind Rooster rescue

Valentino was fortunate to be found by a kind soul in Miami. She could not keep him due to neighborhood regulations nor could she find anyone locally to take him. Luckily she found us and she found a wonderful animal transport group who was willing to bring him to us. He is doing fantastic! He is on meds and is able to find the food and water on his own. We’re working on designing a coop that will work for his special needs.

A New Home for Old Goats

Alfred & Ginger enjoying their new digs
Alfred & Ginger enjoying their new digs

We are just loving the recently added Alfred & Ginger. They have delightful personalities and are enjoying farm life, however, they don’t really like staying with the other small, younger goats. So Alfie & Ginger have a new enclosure where they can be near the other goats, but they have their own space. The amazing thing is, this enclosure was built entirely from donations! Thank you to everyone who has helped, we couldn’t do it without you.

 

Handsome Alfie
Handsome Alfie
Cutest underbites ever!
Cutest under bites ever!

Baby goat Cuteness

And of course, the kids. Not much cuter than baby goats. We have taken down the fences, neutered the father and the whole tornado goat family is living together in the goat equivalent of domestic harmony 🙂

 

Does and Kids
The does and the kids

 

Does and kids
Wilma, Kade Mae, Domino and Jo Jo

 

It’s not easy being a goat mother…

 

Again, thank you

None of this would be possible without all the caring people who help us help these animals. God bless.

 

Goats on the Ground

Our trio of tornado survivors welcomed their babies into the world this weekend. It started with Butter, who had one lovely baby girl that looks exactly like her. Not to be outdone, Wilma gave us twins, two little black goats, that look much like their father. Congratulations girls, Kade and Steve would be very proud of you.

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Welcoming Ginger and Alfred to the Family

We are pleased to announce the arrival of Ginger and her son Alfred, two Boer goats from Fort Myers. They are greatly loved by their previous owners and, when they could no longer care for them due to health issues, they choose us as the new caretakers. It is great to see people putting the health of their animals before their own gratification. So many times we receive animals that have been abused through neglect or dumped off in inhospitable locations, all because their owners would not look for a better alternative. This is an example of true love and caring, although it hurt them to let go, by re-homing these goats their former owners gave them a chance at continuing to have a wonderful life.

Welcome home Ginger and Alfred.

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2015 Wrap Up

It was a tremendously busy year at the farm. After the flood we regrouped and rebuilt. We have launched a website for our non-profit here: FloridaRescueFarm.org. Please take time to visit and see the other side of our homestead. In this capacity we have adopted some wonderful animals, photos below.

Introducing Ralph and Alice, found living by a dumpster.
Introducing Ralph and Alice, found living by a dumpster.

 

George and Bou, two of the four new poults
Our new adorable youngsters, George and Bou, two of the four new poults.

 

Batty & Billie, mother and daughter, a wonderful pair of rabbits.
Batty & Billie, mother and daughter, a wonderful pair of rabbits.

We are very happy to have these in our life, but lets not forget, the goats who came to us last year at this time, Jelly & Peanut…