Official BYH Poll: Which backyard herd animal do you find most rewarding to raise?

Which backyard herd animal do you find most rewarding to raise?

  • Chickens

    Votes: 6 66.7%
  • Goats

    Votes: 5 55.6%
  • Ducks

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • Rabbits

    Votes: 2 22.2%
  • Sheep

    Votes: 5 55.6%
  • Pigs

    Votes: 2 22.2%
  • Turkeys

    Votes: 2 22.2%
  • Quail

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • Geese

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Alpacas

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    9

BYH Project Manager

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The joy of raising animals in your own backyard is a unique and fulfilling experience. Each type of animal brings its own set of rewards, from fresh eggs and milk to companionship and sustainable living. We're curious to know your personal favorite.

Which backyard herd animal do you find most rewarding to raise? Whether it’s the clucking of chickens, the playful antics of goats, or the gentle hum of alpacas, share your top pick and why you think it's the most rewarding.

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Baymule

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I checked chickens, pigs and sheep.
Chickens, nothing beats a fresh, orange yolk egg , from your own chickens. They are a great small livestock animal that adapts well to almost any space. Old laying hens make golden broth and the yummiest chicken and dumplings.

For meat, it’s hard to beat raising Cornish Cross. It’s a great way to pack the freezer with a year’s worth of meat in a short time. Two months and you done, from buying the chicks and enjoying your first meal.

I don’t have laying hens at this time, but a neighbor does and I gladly buy eggs from him. I recently raised 37 Cornish Cross, had an order from a friend who wanted 20 for her freezer, plus feet, heart, liver, gizzards. I parted out the ones I kept, to share with my DD and family. I also like the gizzards and liver, fried and packaged some for myself. Skin, wing tips and scraps were simmered for the dogs to go over their kibble, with broth. Nothing wasted!

I checked pigs. I moved and haven’t got set up for pigs again, but I will do that in the next year or two, I miss good home grown pork. I didn’t keep breeding stock, preferring to buy young pigs from breeders. In 6-8 months, they are ready for slaughter. Pigs eat almost anything and love kitchen scraps and trimmings from the garden. At slaughter, the meat to offal ratio can be as high as 70% meat cuts to 30% waste. Pigs provide sausage, pork chops, roast and everybody’s favorite, BACON!

Sheep. I raise Katahdin hair sheep. I’m shifting from commercial to a registered flock. Katahdin sheep are a meat breed, they have no wool and don’t require shearing. Gestation is 5 months and lambs can go to slaughter anywhere from 60 to 110 pounds, up to a year old is considered lamb.
Sales of registered breeding stock will give me another avenue of income, along with private sales of lambs for meat and taking lambs to auction. Sheep are easy to care for, but need good fences to keep predators away and to keep sheep in. I have 3 Anatolian Shepherd livestock guard dogs to warn away predators. It seems everyone wants a lamb dinner. Currently I have 65 sheep, counting lambs. I’m growing my flock to 50 ewes. After selling lambs, a few grown ewes and keeping ewe lambs, next year I’ll have 38 breeding ewes and I have 3 rams.
 

EweAreKiddingMe!

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My chickens(bantams & silkies) are GREAT they produce me with eggs and when I need to talk to someone my friendliest hen chesnut will come up and let me hold her

I have call ducklings and while they are only ducklings once they start laying I can hatch out eggs in my incubator or under my broody hens

My Nigerian dwarf goats give birth and I sell the bucklings and the doelings I don't want.Plus after the babies wean off I can milk the mamas and make crepes,pancakes,cheese,cajeta,and soap

I also have a sheep we are growing the flock since this is our first year doing sheep, I want to get a dairy sheep eventually so I can make cheese and grill said cheese then put honey on the grilled cheese and it is fabulous and we could also sell the wool to spinners or spin the wool ourselves and sell it.
 

Mini Horses

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We all have favs. :clap

While I've raised mini horses, donkeys, cattle, goats & pigs over the years, my poison now is goat. Yeah, still plenty of chickens for eggs & meat, if I get in the mood. But I enjoy the milk & cheeses from my dairy goats. Plus I find milking to be relaxing -- most days. And, last yr or so I added the meat goats back. Had boer way back when & went with those again. My dairy are large, full sized and bred to the meat buck, so most kids are sold. It's working right now...future?? Easy to cut back numbers but I'm thinking I'll always keep a few milk does :old whenever the day comes to seriously "downsize". :lol:. I've heard that's a thing 🤔🤫 but a feeder pig is on my radar for now :idunno:he

Some of us are just a hopeless addict. :hide:lol:
 

fletch

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I have 15 heritage breed turkeys. 7females and 8 males.They are Narragansett, Royal Palm, Black Spanish, Blue Slate, Bourbon Red, and a White Holland. They wander around the yard, follow me everywhere and laugh at all my bad jokes. Folks driving by stop and comment on them sometimes. They are very entertainging and Heritage species are pretty rare these days.
Second favs are ducks and guineas.
 

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