My Fishery/Smoke House Plans
As you all know I have been totally been working on gathering supplies for my own Fish Farm. The Design is pretty simple and should provide a sustainable fish total of 1k fish per year if not more. The areas in which I am planning could hold as many as 3k fish per year with young lings having their own pond of their own. The design is simple in nature. But the supplies are costly. But once this is finished the fish will sustain myself, my family, any who join my homestead in the foreseeable future as well as my livestock for years to come. This will also allow me to donate yummy fish to local food banks to assist those who are not as fortunate. Never take for granted your good fortune when others around you are suffering Unfortunately this will provide only tilapia for my family, I will still have to fish for the trout and the bass that fills my freezers each year. The most expensive I found for this project is the redesigning this design to use gravity, and water pressure to push the water instead of pumps. Remember we are trying to not use electricity for items that have a alternate source of drive.
The Fish farm will also provide fertile enriched water for my hydroponic Design
All this is great in theory but you must also plan on how you will keep these items edible and long lasting with such a large stock. A Smoke house such as the ones they have in Alaska is key to keeping a rapid growing fish supply under control as well as canning dried fish is a great way to stockpile your fish for livestock, family and homestead needs. Adding my fishing for trout and bass to provide a variety it will be a great idea. In the future when I add pigs, cows and turkeys the smoke house will take on a new yummy meaning. In the past I froze the fish but this seems to be a much better solution to allow for canning, freezing and drying of fish and other uses for it as well.
It seems like a lot, it has been and it will be, but starting small and growing over time will allow for a slow growth, along with my chickens and hatchery I should be able to become self reliant on fish, chicken and a large number of vegetables I cannot plant in my 1 acre of land that I now have earmarked and use for variety of vegetables thru the year , some veggies need the hydroponic and greenhouse to allow for the more fragile items like tomatoes, avocados and other various items.
Living a self sustaining lifestyle is not something that happens overnight and you say Oh I want to do this. Its something that usually happens when you realize that you cannot be dependent on things that are fragile in nature. Your faith in the system has failed at some point, but it doesn’t mean that you wont use it, it just means you want to be prepared if at such time those things will fail you. That switching over and saying well there goes the neighborhood and knowing your family will be well fed if the system fails. Some people say its crazy to do such things but I eat healthier meat, fish and vegetables. Money stretches further and allows me to be able to have other projects in the pipeline like using that extra money on the house that is being built and will be done sometime by the end of the year with no mortgage, just materials were paid for. That is for another post.
I will say that animal husbandry has been definitely the most challenging; Thank god for FFA. Those years around animals definitely gave me a different look on animals and the food chain at a young age. Some say that you would see things and not be able to eat the meat, But that is the furthest thing from the truth , it gave me a reverence to the circle of life in which we now live. It made me appreciate that which is on my plate and gave its life to feed me.
Those who know I ran a cycle of chickens and lets just say that experiment was amazing and wonderful. 30 chickens which were designed for egg laying as well as for meat, I went with a breed that were a medium egg laying and would become mature and could be harvested at 4 months for meat. I did find some interesting results due to the intense summers here the chickens laid less eggs in the summer than they did in the winter, laying say per 3 chickens 3 doz in the winter verse 1 doz in the summer. . I also decided that my chickens would be grass fed and free ranged chickens not corn fed which really made fattening a chicken much more difficult and the fixes creative. The great thing is one of my chickens decided it wanted to be a mother. The sad thing is that she had 6 viable chickens out of 10 eggs, but only 2 survived allowing her to care for them on her own. The next experiment will be a egg incubator and raising them myself and seeing the viability on how many survive doing 10 eggs.
Fishing Season for me is fast approaching as I refill the stockpiles of fishing supplies as well as checking my gear, making hooks and getting ready. I am disabled so of course I cant do this all by myself but I do have someone is supportive in my ideas on making sure that we use all the resources around us. I know that in the next few years I wont be able to do much of any of this but I will have the things in motion so that my family can take over. I found that fishing in the months of March-May are the best time to get the maximum amount of fish, but you can fish year around and get fish but it seems that the most fish is caught between these months. Planning fishing time around the times I need to be in game is definitely going to be challenging this year. I have a wonderful staff which allows me to plan all these wonderful projects. The need to justify a build of a fish smoke house I must be able to provide the fish to fill it to make it worth the money and the time vested. It will also be the first year that I will be using such excess resources to feed the animals on Ara’s farm instead of fish heads for them .
So what is next…..
Well lets just say that the future homestead book of Ara is looking into Turkeys, miniature cows, pigs and goats. With such a viable fish stock I would be able to feed turkeys and pigs now the planning on how to feed 3 miniature cows who weigh about lets say 600lbs without depleting my veggie stock! Oh my!
Ideas and planning are great but only one venture at a time.