Hodges Farm to Offer Farm Raised Angus Beef

New this spring, Hodges Farm will have farm-raised beef for sale.

Angus beef raised on our pastures will be available in our farm shop which opens April 19. We raise our steers in a free range, diverse forage environment, so we are able to manage them without antibiotics or added hormones. We give our animals good living conditions, use grain to supplement their diets during the winter and finish them solely on grass and hay in the Spring. Humanely processed in a USDA certified facility, vacuum packed and frozen for freshness. We are excited to offer healthful food responsibly produced by our family for your family.

The Hodges Farm Shop will be open every Wednesday 4 – 7pm and Saturday 9am – noon.

A “Herd of Horses”, a “Fluffle of Bunnies” – A Gilt, a Heifer and a Filly

cows

Most folks are familiar with the terms used to describe large groups of common animals – a flock of birds, a herd of horses, etc. – and a few trivia buffs have probably even heard of a “crash” of rhinos, or, a “murder” of crows. That being said, how many have given a second thought to the nomenclature used to describe animals on the farm? Well, this is where it becomes a little bit complicated – for instance, a group of piglets is called a “farrow”, juvenile pigs group together in a “drift” and older pigs can be found in a “saunder”. Similarly,  you might stumble across a “down” of hares, a “warren” of rabbits, or a “fluffle” of bunnies. Most will also be aware that a rooster is a male chicken and a hen is the female, or that “stallion” and “mare” are the terms used for male and female horses. But this too can be further broken down. A young female pig, who has not yet had piglets, is called a “gilt” and is only called a sow after farrowing (giving birth). A young female cow, who has not calved, is called a “heifer” and is only called a cow after giving birth. The same conditions, applied to a young female horse, is called a “filly”.

Why are there so many terms for different breeds ages and even conditions of certain animals? Counterintuitively, this reason is to make things simpler. While there is a learning curve involved with committing the various terms to memory, a single term can replace an entire sentence and convey a concise meaning. This way, farmers can have a brief conversation and know exactly which animals need help, are being introduced to the farm, or need to be fed. Just for fun, I’ve included a (far from exhaustive) list of terms for groups of animals from www.yourdictionary.com… enjoy!

  • Apes: a shrewdness
  • Badgers: a cete
  • Bats: a colony or a camp
  • Bears: a sloth or a sleuth
  • Bees: a swarm
  • Buffalo: a gang or obstinacy
  • Camels: a caravan
  • Cats: a clowder or a glaring; Kittens: a litter or a kindle; Wild cats: a destruction
  • Cobras: a quiver
  • Crocodiles: a bask
  • Crows: a murder
  • Dogs: a pack; Puppies: a litter
  • Donkeys: a drove
  • Eagles: a convocation
  • Elephants: a parade
  • Elk: a gang or a herd
  • Falcons: a cast
  • Ferrets: a business
  • Fish: a school
  • Flamingos: a stand
  • Fox: a charm
  • Frogs: an army
  • Geese: a gaggle
  • Giraffes: a tower
  • Gorillas: a band
  • Hippopotami: a bloat
  • Hyenas: a cackle
  • Jaguars: a shadow
  • Jellyfish: a smack
  • Kangaroos: a troop or a mob
  • Lemurs: a conspiracy
  • Leopards: a leap
  • Lions: a pride
  • Moles: a labor
  • Monkeys: a barrel or a troop
  • Mules: a pack
  • Otters: a family
  • Oxen: a team or a yoke
  • Owls: a parliament
  • Parrots: a pandemonium
  • Pigs: a drift or drove (younger pigs) or a sounder or a team (older pigs)
  • Porcupines: a prickle
  • Rabbits: a warren
  • Rats: a colony
  • Ravens: an unkindness
  • Rhinoceroses: a crash
  • Shark: a shiver
  • Skunk: a stench
  • Snakes: a nest
  • Squirrels: a dray or a scurry
  • Stingrays: a fever
  • Swans: a bevy or a game (if in flight: a wedge)
  • Tigers: an ambush or a streak
  • Toads: a knot
  • Turkeys: a gang or a rafter
  • Turtles: a bale or a nest
  • Weasels: a colony, a gang or a pack
  • Whales: a pod, a school, or a gam
  • Wolves: a pack
  • Zebras: a zeal

Blog written by: Connor Newman, Hodges Farm Manager

Reference: https://grammar.yourdictionary.com/word-lists/list-of-names-for-groups-of-animals.html

Spring 2019 = Fruit and Vegetable Production at Hodges Farm

We have finally gotten a break in the torrential rain that has plagued the area for several months and that means that we are hitting the ground running! We are working on a host of new and exciting things to offer our customers in 2019. One of our major projects is fruit and vegetable production. We experimented with growing strawberries for the first time last year and have expanded the garden to include salad greens, radishes, peas, beans, cabbages, bok choy, and a variety of other produce. We are learning more every day about managing a healthy crop of veggies but hope to be able to offer patrons fresh food all throughout the summer starting April 19th and 20th, and we are thrilled to announce that our farm shop for road-side sales on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings throughout the season.

Another exciting prospect for food sales is our venture into locally and humanely raised meats and eggs. We work hard to provide the best life possible to all living things here on the farm and hope that will translate into high quality, altruistically raised meat products including beef, pork, and eggs.

Farmer Connor and Farmer Kim are trying to ensure that all the foodstuffs raised on the farm are done so in a compassionate manner but also in consideration of all USDA and FDA guidelines. They have gone to several continuing education classes in the past year, have put together a Food and Safety Guideline, and are looking to become GAP certified in the near future. Follow our Farm on Facebook, Instagram, and sign up for our newsletters to stay in touch and hear about all the exciting things we will have available for customers in the upcoming months.

Let’s Begin with a Seed – A Perfect Biologic Package

By Connor Newman

What is a seed? Most people are familiar with the idea – put a seed in the ground, add water and a plant happens. This is true, but many are not aware of just how amazing seeds are. A seed is a perfect biologic package, consisting of a protective outer coat, “shelf stable” food storage and all of the genetic material needed for a mature plant. With ideal conditions, and only then, the seed coat will allow oxygen and water inside the seed and begin to germinate. Seeds can stay viable for a very long time, waiting for that ideal environment. Seeds have been found in the Siberian tundra, radiocarbon dated to 32,000 years old, and scientists were able to germinate them. So, if you’re not getting the moisture, light, and temperature right, you may be holding your breath for quite some time, waiting on results. Continue reading