4-H Just for Kids?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by FlipFlopFarmer, Dec 18, 2003.

  1. FlipFlopFarmer

    FlipFlopFarmer Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Oregon
    My husband and I just bought 5 beautiful acres in Oregon and I have many things that I would like to do including chickens, beekeeping, dairy cow, etc.....but I have none - zip - zero experience. I have read many wonderful books but would like to get a more "hands on" experience before investing time and money in animals and supplies.

    My first question.....Is 4-H just for kids?

    Second question.....Ideas for other means of getting hands on experience? My ideal situation would be to find someone that lives close to me that I could talk with but I haven't met anyone with any animals as of yet.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. :D


    Carla
     
  2. RoyalOaksRanch

    RoyalOaksRanch Royal Oaks Taxidermy

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    Yep 4H is a kids thing,,, BUT you could be a leader or a helper :D (If youve never done t before be a helper for a few years before you try leader..) And lets face it, if your kids are involved so are you.... My kids were all MOOOOM Lets do 4H, so off we go to join.. HA I swear I do more work than they do...They are the ones who must show and present the animal. There are shows though.... Horses, Poultry and rabbit shows are common around here, and that is for any age.. I dont know about the sheep, pig or cows though as Ive never shown them.
     

  3. RoyalOaksRanch

    RoyalOaksRanch Royal Oaks Taxidermy

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    I forgot to mention, whatever you do START SMALL! Dont go fill up the land with 30 zillion creatures until you get some experience, and are confortbale with each critters needs.. Maybe get some chickens for egg laying, and if your into butchering meat maybe get a couple of pigs.. (2 are better as they will gain weight better than one piggy by himself) Or perhaps a few goats top eat the grass down.
    Start out with chickens, they are easy to care for, and you get eggs :) And they are cute to watch!
     
  4. Ozarkguy

    Ozarkguy Well-Known Member

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    Right HERE, of course!
    .

    I think you'll find that 99.999% of country folk are very friendly, and will be glad to help you. I don't know about any adult 4h or such. But there are other things like local riding clubs and stuff that you could join. Join a club and you'll soon meet a ton of people who know people who know people.

    And you've got the right idea, but I wouldn't just talk to neighbors. Find people that are into the things that you like, and volunteer to help them. Hands on is the real way to learn, and when they get all this free labor, they'll probably never shut up trying to teach you the right way to do stuff. :)

    And check out the critter sections here on line. Especially check for upcoming stuff in your area, like livestock auctions, fairs, and so on, that could use some help.

    And congratulations on your new property! That's terrific! I'm sure you'll do well and I wish you the best on your new Oregon dirt!

    Happy Holidays!

    gotta love those hills.....

    Ozarkguy

    .
     
  5. jillianjiggs

    jillianjiggs Well-Known Member

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    If you've got a community college in your area, check to see if they offer any ag. classes. Most of the colleges around here (Sacramento, CA) offer complete degrees in agriculture or animal husbandry. You can take classes in horse care, broodmare management, cattle care, livestock feeding, vegetable gardening, managing pastures, hoof care, animal training, you name it. There are even classes that teach you how to make a living off of your land. Definately check it out. If you don't have anything local, try looking for a college in your state that offers online classes (distance learning) that you can take from home. It's a relatively inexpensive way to get the knowledge and hands-on experience.
     
  6. tobo6

    tobo6 Well-Known Member

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    What part of Oregon are you in? I'm from Oregon too. We are in the NW close to the Washington border.

    My kids are in 4H. You didn't mention if you have kids, but I'm wondering if you could get the project papers from your county extention office if you paid for them. They are a wealth of info. If not just talking to the ext. office and gleaming info from them is always a good thing. Join a grange hall, attend a livestock auction, go to a local feedstore.....all places that have a lot of advice and once you get people talking about animals there is no shutting them up. :D

    mljjranch
     
  7. FlipFlopFarmer

    FlipFlopFarmer Well-Known Member

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    Nov 20, 2003
    Location:
    Oregon
    I am just South of Portland, OR just outside a little town called Molalla. Anyone out there near me that would be willing to teach a newbie in exchange for a little free labor?

    We have two boys one isn't of age to start in anything like 4-H and the oldest (12y/o) doesn't want anything to do with it, although I think that he would enjoy it if I could only encourage him to get involved.

    I would love to exchange labor for first hand knowledge. I'm going to try to contact the 4-H leaders in my area for poultry and dairy and see if they are interested in having another helper.

    I must say - I've been reading posts here for a while just checking this out and everyone here is always so helpful to one another and just of wonderful resource for information.

    Thanks again and Happy Holidays. :)

    Carla
     
  8. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Besides the livestock groups, 4H has other areas that interest kids, woodworking, small engines, go carts and such. Maybe there's a group near that has something that might interest him and if he has a special interest, you can contact 4H and if enough kids are interested, a group can be formed.
     
  9. s.wilkes

    s.wilkes Active Member

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    Arkansas
    I Don't Know If This Is Possible In Your Situation, But Here's An Idea. I Have A Friend Who Is Helping A 10 Year Old Boy Who Lives Near Her, With 4-h. His Parents Aren't Interested In Being Invovled With Such Things (to Busy Screwing Up Their Lives) And She Had Him Invovled In 4-h. We Are Donating Him A Market Wether This Year And She Is Going To Help Him To Learn The Ropes. She Takes Him To All The 4-functions. I Was Talking To Her Last Night And She Was (learning) Helping With His Record Book. Maybe You Could Talk To Your Local 4-h Leader About Sponcering Such A Child. You Guys Could Learn Together. And You Would Get A Blessing As Well. A Win Win Situation.

    Shell
     
  10. kate

    kate Well-Known Member

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    contact your livestock extension agent, they have people out there that are livestock advisors who help newbies. they each have their own area of interest. and their job is to help inexperienced newcomers.
     
  11. s.wilkes

    s.wilkes Active Member

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    Dito To What Kate Said. Our Extension Agent Is Very Involved And Very Helpful. Good Idea.

    Shell
     
  12. mary,tx

    mary,tx Well-Known Member Supporter

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    As long as you start small, you can even get a how-to book, maybe ask a few specific questions on the forum, and just learn as you go with your animals.
    I started with my first few goats with a book and a desire to have them!