Top 10 Natural Remedies for Chicken and Duck Keeping

Click here to view the original post.

Hatching, raising, and harvesting the food you put on the table is the best way to know what your family is really being served on their dinner plates. During a long-term disaster or SHTF scenario, it will be the ONLY way to feed yourself and your loved ones. Therefore, chicken and duck keeping is of vital importance.

Chicken and Duck Keeping

Keeping your flock of chickens and ducks healthy so they continue laying quality eggs, breeding, and eating bugs to keep prevent them from destroying the garden, is a survival essential. You won’t likely be able to get help from a vet during a power grid down or other TEOTWAWKI scenario. Learning how to prevent common poultry health issues now, before disaster strikes, could mean the difference between life and death – not just for the chickens and ducks, but for the entire family if disease spreads through the flock an destroys the key food source.

Raising a healthy flock of chickens and ducks does not require the injection of hormones and antibiotics. Common items likely already in your pantry offer a host of preventative benefits for both the flock and the humans who raise them.

Coccidiosis is the number one killer of baby chicks and ducklings. It is a deadly parasitic disease which impacts the intestinal tract of animals and is caused by coccidian protozoa. The often fatal condition spreads from one animal to another via physical contact with infected feces or the ingestion of infected tissue. Chickens, even when only a few weeks old, routinely eat dead or dying members of the flock. Severe and often bloody diarrhea is typically the first sign of a coccidiosis infection.

Adding the spices noted below may substantially help prevent the disease from impacting not just a single chicken or duck, but the entire flock!

Top 10 Natural Remedies for Chickens and Ducks:

1. Black Pepper

The spice is filled with both nutrients and vitamins and also functions as an anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and antioxidant. Black pepper aids in the flushing of toxins from the body. It also helps the fowl to absorb nutrients from its food sources. Chickens are prone to respiratory problems. Adding a few pinches of black pepper to their feed or in their water, can help to prevent respiratory problems and to ease coughing.

2. Cayenne Pepper

During the winter farmers have long added the pepper to chicken and duck feed or water to boost egg production.

3. Oregano

The essential oil from the spice is a natural antibiotic. Oregano can be given to chickens and ducks in the form of an essential oil, fresh or dried – as is commonly sold in the spice section of grocery stores. It can help prevent coccidiosis, blackhead, E.coli, avian flu, and bronchitis.  You can add dried oregano to feed or water or simply sprinkle them in the brooder or coop as a free choice snack. Add extra oregano to the diet of laying hens to give them an added immune system booster.

4. Cinnamon

The spice reduces inflammation and boasts anti-infectious, antibacterial and antioxidant properties as well. Cinnamon can also aid in the prevention of neurological disease. A compound in the spice helps to thin the blood and boost the circulatory system to enhance blood flow to feet, wattles, and combs to ward off frostbite. It also may help with the prevention of congestion, coughing, and infection – and may help prevent respiratory problems as well.

5. Turmeric

The spice has been used as nature’s antibiotic for centuries. It is best known for its powerful antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties. If a chicken or duck gets “bumblefoot” – intense and highly visible swelling of the foot or lower leg, turmeric can likely help. Chicks suffering from “wry neck” – condition where they are unable to hold their head of properly, may benefit from adding a pinch of turmeric to their water or sprinkled over feed. Add about ½ of a teaspoon to the feed or water to a hen with a cold or one showing general signs of lethargy to help boost her immunity and to fight infection.

6. Salt

Chickens and ducks, just like the rest of us, need to steer clear of too much salt. But, the delicious spice should still be kept in your natural remedies tub for emergencies. During the hot summer months salt might be essential to treating a flock suffering from heat exhaustion. It can be used to make a homemade electrolyte to help save overwhelmed chickens and ducks.

Mix together 1 cup of water, 1/8 of a teaspoon of salt, 1 ½ teaspoons of sugar, and 1/8 of a teaspoon of baking soda to made the natural electrolyte. Offer the mixture to the flock members suffering from heat exhaustion or mix it into the waterers for the entire flock to prevent heat exhaustion at a 1 cup per 1 gallon of water ratio. To help keep the flock cool, freeze one of their favorite healthy treats in an ice cube tray and serve – it will be both a cooling and entertaining snack!

7. Garlic

The spice not only helps boost the respiratory and immune systems, it also helps to repel ticks, mites, lice and other common parasites who like to claim your members of your flock for their new home. Garlic also serves as a natural wormer and may even reduce the stench of manure when added to feed on a regular basis. Whole cloves can be floated in the water to administer the spice to your flock, or crushed fresh cloves can be broadcast inside the brooder or pen run as a free choice option. A pinch or two of garlic power can also be sprinkled over dry feed as a natural health supplement for the flock.

8. Apple Cider Vinegar

Add a teaspoon of the vinegar to the waterer twice a week during the warm weather months to help boost calcium absorption. Hens struggled with calcium absorption in the summer far more than any other members of the flock and a drop in calcium will likely cause laying issues and negatively impact egg shell hardiness.

9. Ginger

If a member of the flock has lost its appetite, ginger just might do the trick and spark a desire to eat again. The spice is also often used to help ease an upset stomach, reduce congestion, and as an immune system booster. Ginger also boasts strong anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties. Add a small pinch of dried ginger to feed or cast inside the chicken or duck habitat as a free choice supplement. A pinch of dried ginger can also be added specifically to layer feed to not just boost performance but also promote the production of large eggs.

10. Respiratory Tea

Serve the sick flock members this delicious and healthy tea to help them get over a congestion or respiratory system problem. They absolutely love it, so no coaxing will be necessary to get them to dive right into the “medicine.”  Boil seven cups of water and 3 teaspoons of Astragalus root or oregano for about four minutes. Remove the pot from the stove and add about ½ teaspoon each of any/all the following ingredients: chamomile, lavender, peppermint essential oil, turmeric, cinnamon, black OR cayenne pepper. All the tea to cool for at least 10 minutes, strain, and then serve in a waterer.

Saving our forefathers ways starts with people like you and me actually relearning these skills and putting them to use to live better lives through good times and bad. Our answers on these lost skills comes straight from the source, from old forgotten classic books written by past generations, and from first hand witness accounts from the past few hundred years. Aside from a precious few who have gone out of their way to learn basic survival skills, most of us today would be utterly hopeless if we were plopped in the middle of a forest or jungle and suddenly forced to fend for ourselves using only the resources around us. To our ancient ancestors, we’d appear as helpless as babies. In short, our forefathers lived more simply than most people today are willing to live and that is why they survived with no grocery store, no cheap oil, no cars, no electricity, and no running water. Just like our forefathers used to do, The Lost Ways Book teaches you how you can survive in the worst-case scenario with the minimum resources available. It comes as a step-by-step guide accompanied by pictures and teaches you how to use basic ingredients to make super-food for your loved ones. Watch the video HERE

 

Source : survivallife.com

 

                  RELATED ARTICLES : 

The post Top 10 Natural Remedies for Chicken and Duck Keeping appeared first on .

3 Clever Ways To Save Money On Animal Feed

Click here to view the original post.
3 Clever Ways To Save Money On Animal Feed

Image source: Pixabay.com

Having livestock on your homestead or farm can be a wonderful source of meat, eggs and dairy — not to mention that animals are fun to have around!

But livestock love to eat, and if you’re feeding your animals through the winter, or feeding them primarily store-bought grain, their upkeep can get expensive fairly quick. If you want all the benefits of having livestock, but want to save a little money while doing it, there are several things you can incorporate into your feeding system that will help cut down the bill.

Free-Range and Pasture

Perhaps one of the simplest ways to cut down on your feed bill is to make sure your livestock have access to fresh pasture. In addition to your typical grazers like goats, horses and cows, poultry thrive when they have access to the protein-rich bugs and worms found in healthy pasture. If you live in a climate with lots of creepy crawlies like spiders, grasshoppers, etc., you won’t need to purchase as much grain. Not only will it save you money, but the extra protein will keep your birds healthier, too!

In addition to whatever pasture may naturally occur on your property, you can plant specific fodder crops in your field that will cut down on your store-bought feed bill; it also will increase your animals’ nutrition, even during winter when natural pasture is scarce.

Diatomaceous Earth: The All-Natural Livestock De-Wormer!

For the growing season, plant tasty forage species in your pasture like Timothy grass, alfalfa and clover. During the winter when your grain and hay feed bill would be the highest, you can plant cold-tolerant species like cereal rye, winter wheat and rape. If you have pigs, cattle or sheep, then plant the fodder varieties of root crops like beets, turnips or other brassicas for winter grazing. It’s best to have a mixture of annual and perennial, and cool-weather and warm-weather species in your pasture to ensure that there is plenty of variety for your animals year-round.

Grow Your Own

Many farmers feed their animals hay, but hay can be expensive, depending on that year’s prices, and you’ll need to have storage for a fair bit of it. Growing or sprouting your own fodder grains during the winter is a great, fresh alternative to feeding hay. It’s also a great solution if you don’t have access to a significant amount of pasture.

3 Clever Ways To Save Money On Animal Feed

Image source: Pixabay.com

Fodder can be grown from a variety of different grains, including barley, wheat or whole oats, although barley is often cited as one of the easiest to grow. Fodder grains for sprouting are often inexpensive for a 50-pound bag, and that 50-pound bag of grain can turn into almost 300 pounds of sprouted fodder for your animals! Not to mention, it’s a fairly simple process.

Simply soak the grain in water, spread the grains out in a tray, water occasionally and reap the rewards 7-10 days later!

Fodder can be fed to a wide range of livestock, including goats, pigs, chickens, cows, horses, llamas, geese, rabbits and turkeys. Do a little bit of research to see just how much of your particular livestock’s feed you can replace with fodder.

Feed Kitchen Scraps

Rather than composting them, consider feeding your kitchen scraps to your chickens or pigs. Both chickens and pigs love to go through a wide variety of vegetables, including garlic, leafy greens, tomatoes, squash, onions, etc. It is usually safer to stick to only vegetables and avoid dairy and meat products when feeding scraps to your animals, but you’ll be surprised by the wide variety of scraps your animals will appreciate getting.

Just 30 Grams Of This Survival Superfood Provides More Nutrition Than An Entire Meal!

In my experience, pigs are much more likely to chow down on kitchen scraps when they aren’t being fed on free-choice grain, so if you’d like to save on your feed bill by feeding them kitchen scraps, consider putting them on a rationed grain diet.

You also can scale this up beyond your own kitchen. Talk to your local grocery stores and restaurants to see what excess food or scraps they may have available. Not all restaurants and grocery stores allow this, but it’s worth talking to them to see if they do. You may end up with a steady supply of perfectly good food for your animals to enjoy.

In addition to vegetable scraps, contact your local breweries for spent brewer’s grain. This grain is a by-product of the brewing process where brewers soak the grain in hot water and then harvest the sugar that is produced from the enzymatic activity. What is left is a fiber and protein-rich grain mash that is great for chickens, pigs, cows, ducks and more. Many breweries are happy to give this by-product to farmers at little to no cost.

Although I mentioned avoiding dairy products above, it should be said that pigs, in particular, seem to grow well on some milk products. If you have excess milk from your own animals, or know where you can get milk that is still good but maybe just past the sell-by date, feeding it to your pigs can reduce their grain consumption.

Happy growing!

How do you save money on animal feed? Share your tips in the section below:

3 Clever Ways To Save Money On Animal Feed

3 Clever Ways To Save Money On Animal Feed

Image source: Pixabay.com

Having livestock on your homestead or farm can be a wonderful source of meat, eggs and dairy — not to mention that animals are fun to have around!

But livestock love to eat, and if you’re feeding your animals through the winter, or feeding them primarily store-bought grain, their upkeep can get expensive fairly quick. If you want all the benefits of having livestock, but want to save a little money while doing it, there are several things you can incorporate into your feeding system that will help cut down the bill.

Free-Range and Pasture

Perhaps one of the simplest ways to cut down on your feed bill is to make sure your livestock have access to fresh pasture. In addition to your typical grazers like goats, horses and cows, poultry thrive when they have access to the protein-rich bugs and worms found in healthy pasture. If you live in a climate with lots of creepy crawlies like spiders, grasshoppers, etc., you won’t need to purchase as much grain. Not only will it save you money, but the extra protein will keep your birds healthier, too!

In addition to whatever pasture may naturally occur on your property, you can plant specific fodder crops in your field that will cut down on your store-bought feed bill; it also will increase your animals’ nutrition, even during winter when natural pasture is scarce.

Diatomaceous Earth: The All-Natural Livestock De-Wormer!

For the growing season, plant tasty forage species in your pasture like Timothy grass, alfalfa and clover. During the winter when your grain and hay feed bill would be the highest, you can plant cold-tolerant species like cereal rye, winter wheat and rape. If you have pigs, cattle or sheep, then plant the fodder varieties of root crops like beets, turnips or other brassicas for winter grazing. It’s best to have a mixture of annual and perennial, and cool-weather and warm-weather species in your pasture to ensure that there is plenty of variety for your animals year-round.

Grow Your Own

Many farmers feed their animals hay, but hay can be expensive, depending on that year’s prices, and you’ll need to have storage for a fair bit of it. Growing or sprouting your own fodder grains during the winter is a great, fresh alternative to feeding hay. It’s also a great solution if you don’t have access to a significant amount of pasture.

3 Clever Ways To Save Money On Animal Feed

Image source: Pixabay.com

Fodder can be grown from a variety of different grains, including barley, wheat or whole oats, although barley is often cited as one of the easiest to grow. Fodder grains for sprouting are often inexpensive for a 50-pound bag, and that 50-pound bag of grain can turn into almost 300 pounds of sprouted fodder for your animals! Not to mention, it’s a fairly simple process.

Simply soak the grain in water, spread the grains out in a tray, water occasionally and reap the rewards 7-10 days later!

Fodder can be fed to a wide range of livestock, including goats, pigs, chickens, cows, horses, llamas, geese, rabbits and turkeys. Do a little bit of research to see just how much of your particular livestock’s feed you can replace with fodder.

Feed Kitchen Scraps

Rather than composting them, consider feeding your kitchen scraps to your chickens or pigs. Both chickens and pigs love to go through a wide variety of vegetables, including garlic, leafy greens, tomatoes, squash, onions, etc. It is usually safer to stick to only vegetables and avoid dairy and meat products when feeding scraps to your animals, but you’ll be surprised by the wide variety of scraps your animals will appreciate getting.

Just 30 Grams Of This Survival Superfood Provides More Nutrition Than An Entire Meal!

In my experience, pigs are much more likely to chow down on kitchen scraps when they aren’t being fed on free-choice grain, so if you’d like to save on your feed bill by feeding them kitchen scraps, consider putting them on a rationed grain diet.

You also can scale this up beyond your own kitchen. Talk to your local grocery stores and restaurants to see what excess food or scraps they may have available. Not all restaurants and grocery stores allow this, but it’s worth talking to them to see if they do. You may end up with a steady supply of perfectly good food for your animals to enjoy.

In addition to vegetable scraps, contact your local breweries for spent brewer’s grain. This grain is a by-product of the brewing process where brewers soak the grain in hot water and then harvest the sugar that is produced from the enzymatic activity. What is left is a fiber and protein-rich grain mash that is great for chickens, pigs, cows, ducks and more. Many breweries are happy to give this by-product to farmers at little to no cost.

Although I mentioned avoiding dairy products above, it should be said that pigs, in particular, seem to grow well on some milk products. If you have excess milk from your own animals, or know where you can get milk that is still good but maybe just past the sell-by date, feeding it to your pigs can reduce their grain consumption.

Happy growing!

How do you save money on animal feed? Share your tips in the section below:

Eating Well When the SHTF! The Legacy Food Mega Sampler Pack – Over 41,000 Calories Total!

Click here to view the original post.

Many of us know how fragile our economy and transportation systems are.  One hiccup can leave an area without food deliveries for a while.  Then, throw in there all the “other” stuff that comes with a crisis: do you bug in or bug out? Is everyone safe?  Are people acting civil or like animals “out there?”  Can this crisis get further out of control?  What would that look like? There are a bunch of things to consider.  That’s why we prep!

In a crisis, food is going to be important!  Being able to make quick meals, getting the right amount of calories, having food that you can bug out with if you need to, not having to depend on the government…all these are important things to consider when storing food.  That’s why food storage is one of the big topics that comes up in preparedness and survival talk.

Preppers all agree that you should store what you eat and eat what you store.  Your food storage should be made up of what you have in your pantry, canned foods and long term food storage, like #10 cans and buckets of food staples you can make on your own with mylar bags, oxygen absorbers, and 5-gallon buckets.  But many agree that you should have some freeze-dried food as well.

I was recently sent the Legacy Mega Sample Pack.  This food bucket is filled with 183 servings of long term food storage.  Legacy foods are different in that they provide 1 1/2 – 2 cups per serving.  When you’re hungry, that will make a big difference!  Each serving is an average of 227 calories.  The total number of calories of the Mega Pack is 41,600.  In an average 2,000 calorie day, the bucket will provide one person with 20 days worth of food.

“The 183 Serving MEGA Sample Pack from Legacy Premium includes 4 different breakfasts (16 servings total), 19 different entrees (76 servings total), 6 side dishes (24 servings total), 2 drink mixes (32 servings total), and coffee (35 servings total).” SOURCE

So How Does It Taste?

I chose to cook the Alfredo Pasta for the taste test.  I was impressed!  I’m not quite sure what I was expecting.  Probably something that was edible, but more “survival” food.  The food could actually be served for a regular family meal.

It’s important to know that Legacy food doesn’t only taste good, but is gluten free and vegetarian.

The Legacy Mega Sampler Pack has 76 Five Star ratings on the Legacy Page and a total of 4.5 Stars on Amazon.  The pack breaks down to $10.95 per pound of food.  This food will last 25 years if kept in a controlled environment.  If you are looking to add some freeze-dried food to your long term food storage or you want some to be a part of your BOB or 72-hour kit, you should really consider the Legacy Mega Sampler Pack.  Get even more info. here!

Pic Review

This sucker is huge! Check out the 5 gallon Home Depot bucket for comparison!

View inside the bucket!

Entrees!

Breakfast!

Sides!

Drinks!

 

Cooking it up!

Pour and Whisk baby!

Boiling! Just about time!

Finished product!

Peace,
Todd

Return of the 10/22 mags

Click here to view the original post.

As I mentioned earlier, they’re back.

20170316_170810

Serving suggestion. 20mm can not included.

The Butler Creek Hot Lips 25-rd, smoke colored, 10/22 magazines from January’s big to do have returned. I have 24 boxes sitting here packed up and ready to go. Each box contains 12 magazines, packed loose (meaning no packaging. If they were still in their packaging I wouldnt be able to fit them 12 to a Flat Rate Box).

Price is $110 for 12 brand new mags, including shipping. Email me and I’ll email you back a link you can pay through email. When they ship you’ll get a tracking number so you can follow along. Email me and say “Dude! Me want mags!”

Return of the 10/22 mags

As I mentioned earlier, they’re back.

20170316_170810

Serving suggestion. 20mm can not included.

The Butler Creek Hot Lips 25-rd, smoke colored, 10/22 magazines from January’s big to do have returned. I have 24 boxes sitting here packed up and ready to go. Each box contains 12 magazines, packed loose (meaning no packaging. If they were still in their packaging I wouldnt be able to fit them 12 to a Flat Rate Box).

Price is $110 for 12 brand new mags, including shipping. Email me and I’ll email you back a link you can pay through email. When they ship you’ll get a tracking number so you can follow along. Email me and say “Dude! Me want mags!”

5 Excellent Reasons To Keep Backyard Chickens

Click here to view the original post.

Ah, those versatile backyard chickens!

All of us who aim to grow our own food and medicine could use a little help sometimes, right?

Maybe someone to aerate, till, and weed the garden, and remove some of the peskier bugs.

It’d be great if they could make our kitchen chores easier by reducing waste and providing healthy food for our families.

They need to be affordable.

And if they can also offer peace of mind and maybe even some entertainment—all the better!

If all that sounds like a skill set you could get behind, then you already know where to look…

…those friendly backyard chickens!

Read on to learn more about the benefits of keeping these fabulous home and garden helpers!

Benefit No. 1:  Eggs, Meat, Manure, and More!

Eggs, meat, manure, pest control, and the joy of keeping them are some of the biggest reasons folks raise backyard chickens.

For instance, did you know that your average dual-purpose backyard hen can produce more than 180 eggs a year—and about one cubic foot of highly prized manure every six months?

if you’re looking to put meat on the table, you’ll be glad to know that same chicken can achieve a slaughter weight of up to eight pounds in as few as six weeks.

You can also use every part of the chicken—not just its meat. Its bones make nutritious stock, you can use its feathers for composting or craft materials, and the rest can provide nourishment for other carnivorous animals, such as dogs.

As omnivores with a strong preference for live insects and sometimes small critters, chickens can help with overpopulations of grasshoppers, wireworms, cutworms, Japanese beetles, brown marmorated stink bugs, small mice, and more.

They are also fascinating creatures to watch and can provide endless entertainment.

Benefit No. 2: Eliminating Waste

But how about recycling?

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture 31 percent (or 133 billion pounds!) of our available food supply is wasted by retailers and consumers annually.

Most of this waste occurs because consumers—that’s us—just don’t want to eat it. Maybe the fruit was bruised, the leftovers were unloved, or the baking became a debacle.

Whatever the reason, perfectly safe foods end up in landfills at alarming rates.

Since chickens have no concern for the aesthetics of food and have fewer taste buds than your average human, they make great “recyclers” of unwanted, but still safe, edibles.

If every household or community had backyard chickens, we could potentially eliminate 21 percent of the post-recycling waste overwhelming our landfills. (Note that feeding chickens kitchen scraps is illegal in the United Kingdom unless you are vegan, so this benefit may not apply equally in all circumstances.)

Benefit No. 3: Garden Helpers

Backyard chickens are also great workers if managed in a manner that respects their inherent behaviors.

  • For example, with their powerful scratching abilities, backyard chickens can be used to help break down a compost pile.
  • Using electric netting or runs, they make great Weed Eaters along hard-to-mow fence lines.
  • In winter, backyard chickens can help prepare your garden beds for spring. As they scavenge through mulch and organic debris looking for overwintering pests, they will essentially be doing light tilling. And, of course, they’ll be fertilizing your soil along the way!

Benefit No. 4:  Healthy Chickens Means Healthy Meat and Eggs

If these great reasons to keep backyard chickens haven’t totally convinced you, then how about peace of mind?

We all know factory-farmed broiler chickens and egg layers are not raised using ideal methods when it comes to chicken well-being. But these conditions also contribute to potentially problematic effects related to human well-being.

For example, from 1944 until 2015, arsenic was an FDA-approved feed additive used frequently for speeding chicken growth, enhancing skin pigmentation, and preventing parasite infestations.

It was believed that the arsenic ingested by chickens would remain organic and be excreted prior to processing, therefore posing no risks to humans.

However, new scientific testing proved that inorganic arsenic—the kind that causes lung, bladder, and skin cancers and contributes to cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, cognitive deficits, and adverse pregnancy outcomes—did build up at greater levels in chickens fed arsenic and was likely transmitted to humans during this period.

Although arsenic does occur in nature and there are certain times when it might be useful (e.g., as rat poison), intentionally feeding it to chickens on a regular basis to make them fatter has proven not to be the safest idea.

Benefit No. 5: You’re In Control

When you raise your own backyard chickens, you get to choose what they eat, how they live, and how they are treated if processed for meat.

You also control the cleanliness of your chicken coop and can play a direct role in ensuring your chickens’ health as a means of contributing to your own good health.

Getting Started With Backyard Chickens

Raising backyard chickens is not difficult, but it does require commitment and certain skills.

People all over the world have done it successfully for thousands of years without all the technology we have today. However, as a result of modern food conveniences like grocery stores and fast food, many of us have lost our connection to food-raising traditions and need a little help reconnecting with our heritage.

To learn more about raising backyard chickens for eggs, meat, and fun, be sure to check out our latest film + book here. 

The post 5 Excellent Reasons To Keep Backyard Chickens appeared first on The Grow Network.

5 Excellent Reasons To Keep Backyard Chickens

Ah, those versatile backyard chickens!

All of us who aim to grow our own food and medicine could use a little help sometimes, right?

Maybe someone to aerate, till, and weed the garden, and remove some of the peskier bugs.

It’d be great if they could make our kitchen chores easier by reducing waste and providing healthy food for our families.

They need to be affordable.

And if they can also offer peace of mind and maybe even some entertainment—all the better!

If all that sounds like a skill set you could get behind, then you already know where to look…

…those friendly backyard chickens!

Read on to learn more about the benefits of keeping these fabulous home and garden helpers!

Benefit No. 1:  Eggs, Meat, Manure, and More!

Eggs, meat, manure, pest control, and the joy of keeping them are some of the biggest reasons folks raise backyard chickens.

For instance, did you know that your average dual-purpose backyard hen can produce more than 180 eggs a year—and about one cubic foot of highly prized manure every six months?

if you’re looking to put meat on the table, you’ll be glad to know that same chicken can achieve a slaughter weight of up to eight pounds in as few as six weeks.

You can also use every part of the chicken—not just its meat. Its bones make nutritious stock, you can use its feathers for composting or craft materials, and the rest can provide nourishment for other carnivorous animals, such as dogs.

As omnivores with a strong preference for live insects and sometimes small critters, chickens can help with overpopulations of grasshoppers, wireworms, cutworms, Japanese beetles, brown marmorated stink bugs, small mice, and more.

They are also fascinating creatures to watch and can provide endless entertainment.

Benefit No. 2: Eliminating Waste

But how about recycling?

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture 31 percent (or 133 billion pounds!) of our available food supply is wasted by retailers and consumers annually.

Most of this waste occurs because consumers—that’s us—just don’t want to eat it. Maybe the fruit was bruised, the leftovers were unloved, or the baking became a debacle.

Whatever the reason, perfectly safe foods end up in landfills at alarming rates.

Since chickens have no concern for the aesthetics of food and have fewer taste buds than your average human, they make great “recyclers” of unwanted, but still safe, edibles.

If every household or community had backyard chickens, we could potentially eliminate 21 percent of the post-recycling waste overwhelming our landfills. (Note that feeding chickens kitchen scraps is illegal in the United Kingdom unless you are vegan, so this benefit may not apply equally in all circumstances.)

Benefit No. 3: Garden Helpers

Backyard chickens are also great workers if managed in a manner that respects their inherent behaviors.

  • For example, with their powerful scratching abilities, backyard chickens can be used to help break down a compost pile.
  • Using electric netting or runs, they make great Weed Eaters along hard-to-mow fence lines.
  • In winter, backyard chickens can help prepare your garden beds for spring. As they scavenge through mulch and organic debris looking for overwintering pests, they will essentially be doing light tilling. And, of course, they’ll be fertilizing your soil along the way!

Benefit No. 4:  Healthy Chickens Means Healthy Meat and Eggs

If these great reasons to keep backyard chickens haven’t totally convinced you, then how about peace of mind?

We all know factory-farmed broiler chickens and egg layers are not raised using ideal methods when it comes to chicken well-being. But these conditions also contribute to potentially problematic effects related to human well-being.

For example, from 1944 until 2015, arsenic was an FDA-approved feed additive used frequently for speeding chicken growth, enhancing skin pigmentation, and preventing parasite infestations.

It was believed that the arsenic ingested by chickens would remain organic and be excreted prior to processing, therefore posing no risks to humans.

However, new scientific testing proved that inorganic arsenic—the kind that causes lung, bladder, and skin cancers and contributes to cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, cognitive deficits, and adverse pregnancy outcomes—did build up at greater levels in chickens fed arsenic and was likely transmitted to humans during this period.

Although arsenic does occur in nature and there are certain times when it might be useful (e.g., as rat poison), intentionally feeding it to chickens on a regular basis to make them fatter has proven not to be the safest idea.

Benefit No. 5: You’re In Control

When you raise your own backyard chickens, you get to choose what they eat, how they live, and how they are treated if processed for meat.

You also control the cleanliness of your chicken coop and can play a direct role in ensuring your chickens’ health as a means of contributing to your own good health.

Getting Started With Backyard Chickens

Raising backyard chickens is not difficult, but it does require commitment and certain skills.

People all over the world have done it successfully for thousands of years without all the technology we have today. However, as a result of modern food conveniences like grocery stores and fast food, many of us have lost our connection to food-raising traditions and need a little help reconnecting with our heritage.

To learn more about raising backyard chickens for eggs, meat, and fun, be sure to check out our latest film + book here. 

The post 5 Excellent Reasons To Keep Backyard Chickens appeared first on The Grow Network.

Building Your Own Firearm (Part 4 – AR-15 Upper Parts)

Click here to view the original post.

Written by John Hertig on The Prepper Journal.

Last time, we investigated parts for the AR-15 lower.  Now we turn our attention to the upper and some important accessories.  These choices were researched in February, 2017.  Note that this means this list of parts, prices and sources may not still be valid, and was based upon my preferences and budget, so may not be the best choices for you and your particular needs.

The AR-15 Upper

The upper consists of the top part of the receiver, Upper Parts Kit (dust cover and forward assist parts), chambered barrel, barrel nut, hand guard (to keep you from burning your hand on a hot barrel), gas tube system, bolt carrier group (BCG) and charging handle.  You can get this as a complete assembly, complete minus the BCG and charging handle (because there is a wide variety of possibilities for each of these), or as individual parts so you get exactly what you want.  Personally, I prefer that my barrels be professionally head spaced, so I would tend to not get individual parts unless I could not find a satisfactory complete upper or there was a MASSIVE savings achievable.

The choice for the top part of the receiver is generally aluminum (forged or billet), steel or stainless steel.  Most common is a “flat top” which just has a picatinny rail on the top, or you can find one which has the “handle” reminiscent of the M-16.   The gas tube selection is fairly tightly controlled by the ammo the barrel is chambered for and somewhat by barrel length; the major choice left is the gas block style.  This system sends some of the gas back into the upper, which can lead to fouling in the action.  The latest technology seems to be to replace the gas return system with a piston to remove any chance of fouling, but this will cost between $250 and $350 additional; it can be added later and I would recommend ensuring the firearm works “normally” first.

Your most difficult choice is likely to be the barrel.  Start with the caliber.  There is the 223 chambering which is the civilian version of the round, and may have problems firing (more accurately, extracting after firing) the 5.56 military version of the round.  Or there is the 5.56 military version of the round, whose chamber will function with the 223, but loses some accuracy with it.  A nice compromise is the 223 WYLDE, which will shoot both versions of the round with good accuracy.  Or you can get a barrel set up for 7.62×39 (the AK round), or various “wildcat” calibers like 300 Blackout, 458 Socom or 50 Beowulf, or a number of other calibers which are less common.  Someone, somewhere, has managed to accomplish any caliber with a magazine short enough to fit into the AR-15 receiver (or for that matter, longer calibers as single shots).  Next there is the length of the barrel, pistols generally being about 7.5″ or 10.5″ and rifles being 16″ (the legal minimum, for easy handling and up to 200 or 300 yard effective range) and longer (for more range).  For a tougher choice, there is the spin rate of the rifling which is rather dependent on the weight(s) of bullet you are going to be using.  Actually, the length of the projectile and the velocity are the actual key factors, but the weight tends to be related to length, and velocity tends to be related to weight.  Thus weight is used because it works “well enough” and is easier to use.

Spin rate, or “twist” is specified as “1 turn in # of inches”, for instance 1:9″.  At any weight bullet, a shorter distance for one complete revolution results in a faster spin, and enough spin to act as a gyroscope ensures accuracy.  Heavier bullets do not go as fast, so do not spin as fast as lighter ones in the same twist barrel.  All bullet spin slows down over distance.  When a bullet spin slows down enough to lose gyroscopic stability, it can tumble and accuracy becomes terrible.  Thus bullet weight (more precisely length and velocity), barrel length, and spin rate are key factors in defining the effective range of use, and this can vary with temperature and altitude.

Here are the most practical current twists:

“Not the best” on the heavy end means that the bullet spin slows down and discards accuracy at a relatively short range.  “Not the best” on the light end means that the bullet might fly apart (due to being fragile and spinning very fast), which again means no accuracy.  So unless you know just what twist you need for a specific purpose, 1:8″ seems the most versatile choice, with 1:9 optimized for light bullets and 1:7 optimized for heavy bullets.

Then there is barrel profile, either standard or HBAR (Heavy BARrel).  HBAR tends to be more accurate (flexes less as the barrel heats up), but is heavier.  “Fluting” (grooves or dimples) removes a little of the weight of a heavy barrel and it looks sharp, too.  Many “standard” barrels have a “M4” profile, which “looks clunky”.  There are also “pencil” barrels which are quite light, but heat up very quickly, causing the point of impact to “string”.  And there is the material to choose:  steel or stainless steel or even carbon fiber wrapped (another way to lower weight).  The steel barrels are available in a number of finishes to combat corrosion.

Handguard length and style are a matter of personal preference.  You don’t want one which is LONGER than the barrel or SHORTER than the gas tube system, but between those limits it can be whatever you prefer.  Some are set up to allow flexible attachment of accessories; the major competitors for this are the pubic domain “Keymod” system and the Magpul’s free license “M-Loc” system.

My Upper Choices

Delta Team Tactical has been sending me regular emails with sales on with what seem like good uppers (by Davidson Defense) at good prices, which is half the reason I got interested in this project.  Thus I’ll likely get my rifle upper from them.  Without a BCG or charging handle, they start around $209 and go up to one WITH these parts for $425.99, so I can get pretty close to what appeals to me.  They have a pistol upper or three for $199 which look pretty good as well.  Note that they seem to run a few weeks behind in shipping uppers and a few other parts, and may require a reminder phone call.

One alternative which intrigues me is the “no lube” claim made by Anderson Rifles.  This is due to a “RF85” treatment which is mostly available only on their complete firearms.  They do have complete uppers with and without barrel and handguard, but not a barrel I like.

Variation between BCGs is a bit of a mystery to me; the major difference seems to be the “coating” or “finish”.  Looking at companies with a good selection, it appears that “Nitride” finished ones seem to be entry level in the $75 range, while “Nickel Boron” seems to be a better grade, in the $150 range.  And I have seen “light” ones, as well as AR-15 (seems to be “standard” weight) and M-16 (sort of heavy weight) styles.  I prefer the heavy one and the buffer to match.  As for the charging handle, any mil-spec one will do, although one with an extended latch may be useful if you’re putting on a scope and Delta Team Tactical has one like this for $18.99.

The barrel will often have a flash hider or recoil compensator on it.  For many people, this is mostly decorative, but if you need one more capable (or California compliant) than the one there, you’ll need to search for one which will meet your needs.  And perhaps pay a fair amount, since some of these cost over $100, such as an alleged top performer, the Lantac Dragon.  I’m not concerned with, nor can I afford, this at the current point in time, and don’t like the “jagged” end ones, so will probably go with a simple round one with ports only on the side and top, and a price of $25 or less.  Or I might just stick with whichever one comes with the barrel.  If you choose to not have one for aesthetic (or legal) reasons, it would be wise to put a threaded collar on the barrel end to protect the threads or get a barrel without the threads.  And be careful that if you remove or replace a flash hider that the barrel length (of a rifle) does not drop below 16″ (some barrels are 14.5″ and use the flash hider to meet the 16″ requirement).  As I understand it, this setup must have the muzzle device “pinned” to the barrel in order to be legal.

AR-15 Accessories

That is everything you need to make the gun shoot, but there are still things to add to make it usable.  Most important are sights.  If you got an upper with the “handle”, the rear sight is part of that, and you’ll need the matching front sight which clamps on the barrel.  But if you got a flat top, you will need a set of sights which clamp to the picatinny rail which runs the length of the upper receiver and the handguard.  Note that a lot of people add battery powered optical sights or scopes.  Even if you plan to mount optics it is a good idea to have flip-up “iron” sights as backup in case the fancy optics batteries die or it gets broken.  For inline sights, you can get a set for as little as $20 a set, but many of these are junk.  Magpul has some good ones made of polymer; one of the few companies that do that well, and they will cost $70 or more a set.  Going up from there, you can easily spend a couple of hundred.  Another option is “45 degree” sights, which clamp onto the picatinny rail and stick out to the side at a 45 degree angle.  To use these (without having to remove your optics), just rotate the firearm 45 degrees until they are vertical.  These are particularly useful if you have a scope, while the flip up ones can sometimes be used without removing the “red dot” optics.

Note that you want to have your eyes perfectly in line with your primary sight system when you bring the firearm to your shoulder.  If the sight system is too high, add height to the comb using risers which permanently attach or strap on, or are part of an elastic sleeve around the stock.  If the sight system is too low, and there is no way to lower the comb, you could try a different stock, or just get a riser to raise the sight system.

A sling is very helpful, and in order to attach a sling, you need sling mounts on the firearm.  Many stocks have one or more built in sling mounts or places to attach sling mounts, and a tactical sling mount plate can be mounted between the stock and receiver.  For the front end, there may be a sling mount on the handguard or which can be attached to the handguard, or clamped to the picatinny rail.  As for the sling itself, a two point sling convertible to single point is often the most effective choice for a tactical firearm.  For heavy firearms, the 2″ UrbanERT e-RUSH seems a good choice, but if the firearm is relatively light, the 1 1/4″ MagPul MS3 or MS4 sling or the 1″ Cetacea Rabbit also look to have promise.

Of course, you need some magazines.  The bigger the magazine, the more rounds you can fire without reloading, but the further it sticks down from the firearm, the heavier it is, and the greater the chances of a feed failure or the magazine catching on something or getting knocked.  A drum can fix the length problem, but not weight, and the cost of these tends to be high.  I probably would not have any magazine with greater than 30 round capacity, and would be more comfortable carrying with a 20 round capacity magazine inserted.  I’d also get at least one magazine (ten rounds or less) which would fit flush into the receiver.  I’m planning to go with Magpul PMAG Gen3 (Gen2 have durability issues) for my primary magazines, as they are pretty much the current standard, available in 10, 20, 30 and 40 round capacities, have colors other than black, and are available for $15 or less.  Lancer has a hybrid with translucent polymer body and metal feed lips which seems to have potential, but a higher cost.  If metal magazines are preferred, insist on at least international military (STANAG) quality ones, preferably from D&H or Colt.  Ammo Storage Components (ASC) magazines also seem to be a decent choice.  Magpul or equivalent anti-tilt followers are recommended in any magazine to minimize feeding issues.

A short picatinny rail on the bottom of the handguard is useful for mounting a light or laser or even a combination.

Total Cost

If you have the tooling, settle for the basics and shop wisely, you should be able to bring this in under $500; I found a kit with everything (including sights) except for the receiver for $399 and you will likely be able to beat that if you shop hard and effectively.  Of course, pretty much every part can be upgraded, so $800 is a better target for a significantly improved version.  And if you want “the best” and/or don’t have the inclination to shop around for best price, $1200 and up is not difficult to manage.  If you can’t afford the firearm you want, build one which can be upgraded later.

In the next article, I will relate my experiences completing the Tennessee Arms receiver using their jig and a drill press and a forged receiver using the Easy Jig and a router.

The post Building Your Own Firearm (Part 4 – AR-15 Upper Parts) appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Prepping is Lifestyle

Click here to view the original post.

There were a few changes here awhile back with moving healthy living and essential oils over to Wholesome Families.
I have been mostly MIA this winter and I wanted to share why.

In November, right before Thanksgiving, The Principal hurt himself at work. What we thought was a small sprained ankle ended up being a torn ligament and he was home for 5 months. Then on December 18th I slipped on some black ice and landed flat on my back. I ended up needing to be transported to the local hospital for CT Scan and Xrays. I was diagnosed with a concussion and have since been diagnosed with Post Concussion Syndrome.
It was a very hard winter for us. Physically and mentally. Thankfully we still have the youngest at home and a lot….all of the physical responsibility fell on him. The snow removal that seemed never ending and also the wood hauling.

These two events in an of themselves weren’t the end of the world. Together was the perfect storm leading us to reevaluate our prepping lifestyle.

SPIRITUALLY

Thankful for live streaming from our church. We stayed in a lot. We are both introverts so this wasn’t all that hard to do even when healthy.
We began to crave community though and living where we live, 5 rural acres in North Idaho, we don’t have much of that.
If the SHTF tomorrow we are all we have. Us and 3 of the 4 kids. (One moved to NYC)
I have always wondered if we were making the right choice being out where we are. Will we be able to keep ourselves safe from marauders? There aren’t even enough of us to pull shifts. Yes, I have read many a book that plants these ideas in my head.

PHYSICALLY

We aren’t getting any younger. This last 5 months just proved that living here isn’t an easy lifestyle. The only animals we have left are chickens. Winters are hard, as is the prep for winter, which starts in late summer. We will need wood again (we actually ran out) which means either paying for it or going up to the forest to get it. Regardless, it will need to be split and stacked. The teenager isn’t going to live at home forever. Not to say that we can’t handle it now, but 15-20 years from now is a different story.

FINANCIALLY

Thankfully The Principal was covered under workers comp. at 67% of his income. We didn’t even feel it because it was actually more take home than his normal pay. Uncle Sam gets WAY too much of the cut in my opinion.
We also had plenty of food stores so I wasn’t ever worried about the lack of pay.

Where is this all going you ask?

The Principal and I have decided that life is short. The prepping, while necessary, doesn’t look the same for us anymore.
We are trading in our 5 rural acres in the American Redoubt for a 5th wheel and a truck. We haven’t been living in fear but we do feel we are missing out on a lot of life living where we are living. We did ponder just moving into a house closer to Coeur d Alene, but have decided a year, or two, or even three in a 5th wheel would be a great adventure.

We are in the process of get the house all spiffy to sell it. Downsizing A LOT. Storing some. We will still have adult children in the area so they are benefitting from the preps that we can’t take with us.

The cool thing is prepping looks different for everybody and everybody has skills they still need to learn. We can’t possibly know everything and we are excited to learn about prepping while traveling.

Are you wanting to learn more about prepping? I have something for you!

Prepper University</strong>

They have FREE Quick Start Classes, Prepping Intensives, Advanced Prepping Intensives, and a Student Center.

We have helped hundreds of students get prepared fast with our Prepping Intensive Courses. Our courses are different because we don’t tell you what to do. We help you figure out what to do. All of our situations are unique, and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all plan. Our series of assessments, challenges, and quizzes will help you to create a plan that works for your family, on your budget, in your location.

  • Author and EMP expert, Arthur T. Bradley teaches the finer points of Faraday cages and best strategies for preparing for a grid-down future.
  • Selco of SHTF School, shares the grim realities of surviving in a war zone.
  • Survivor of Argentina’s economic collapses, author Fernando Aguirre (FerFAL) explains the signs of an economy teetering on the edge of collapse and how to prepare for that event.
  • A. American, author of the popular Survivalist Series, discusses community and worst case scenarios.
  • Off-grid lifestyle expert, Tammy Trayer, teaches the nuts and bolts of living off the power grid and provides details for setting up your own alternative energy system.

Take one Prepping Intensive for only $99
Take a whopping $40 off of the regular price of $139 to enroll in the Prepping Intensive of your choice. They even have a payment plan.

Go here to learn about the difference between the two courses.

For the Price of a New Prepping Book Each Week, You Can Have Live Classes with Your Favorite Experts and Bloggers.

  • Brandon Smith talks about barter economy
  • Tim Young talks about moving to the country to become more self-reliant
  • Tammy Trayer talks about off-grid living
  • Merriweather talks about foraging
  • Dr. Arthur T. Bradley talks about EMP survival
  • Selco talks about survival in war-torn Bosnia
  • FerFal (Fernando Aguirre) talks about surviving the collapse of Argentina
  • Toby Cowern, an Arctic survival expert, talks about surviving with nothing more than the clothes on your back
  • Cherie Norton, an NRA instructor, talks about situational awareness and personal safety
  • Jim Cobb talks about hardening the security of your home
  • A. American talks about surviving long-term scenarios
  • Cat Ellis talks about herbalism and medical preparedness
  • Lisa Egan, a personal trainer, talks about the importance of fitness as a prep
  • Patrice Lewis tells the truth about the rural lifestyle and survival homesteads.

The sale is over tomorrow at noon and the price for each course will return to $139.

 

I am excited for our future and I am equally as excited to share how to prep while living in an RV full-time!

**********************************************************
Thank you for using affiliate links and such.
It doesn’t cost you extra to use them, so thank you.
Sometimes I get free stuff to review.
I promise you I will always be honest with my opinion
of any product regardless of if I were paid in addition
to receiving the free product. You can trust me.
**********************************************************
Do you need Essential Oils of your own?
You can send me an e-mail and I will personally assist
you in choosing the best oils to fit your needs.
You can also visit my store.
**********************************************************
Please use discretion if using oils.
I am not a doctor and can not diagnose or treat what ails ya.
I can just give my advice. Essential Oils have yet to be
approved by the FDA.
**********************************************************

The post Prepping is Lifestyle appeared first on Mama Kautz.

Essential Backpacking Gear Checklist

Click here to view the original post.

Essential Backpacking Gear Checklist Sometimes you just need a good old fashioned list. This is a great one. It doesn’t come from a prepper or survivalist website. Rather I thought we go to the source. As peppers we may practice a bugout a couple times a year but for backpackers they think about backpacking every …

Continue reading »

The post Essential Backpacking Gear Checklist appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.

The 7 Biggest Nuclear Warheads Ever Detonated

Click here to view the original post.

The 7 Biggest Nuclear Warheads Ever Detonated The bigger the nuke, the better. Or that was what the US and Soviet Union thought in the late 50s and early 60s. Times have changed, and nuclear weapons this large have not been tested in a long time. There are not as many of these big boys in service …

Continue reading »

The post The 7 Biggest Nuclear Warheads Ever Detonated appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.

Fire Starter

Click here to view the original post.

Last week my friend and fellow blogger Leon  Pantenburg came to my wilderness survival class and held a presentation on fire starters.  Fire starters are a combination of equipment and process to start fire in an emergency situation.

The highlight was when Leon used flint, steel and char cloth.  Flint, steel and char cloth were the tools to create a spark.  The char cloth captured the tiny spark and began to ignite a very small section of the char cloth.


Char cloth is made from all cotton material (e.g., blue jeans) that is placed in a small container and is essentially cooked for 5-10 minutes.


Take a look at Leon’s video or visit his blog at www.survialcommonsense.com


Leon calls char cloth a miracle material for making a fire.


When I head out into Oregon’s backcountry I have a small pack that contains the basics of the 10 essentials.


Among the many components in my pack is a small (sandwich size) zip lock plastic bag containing my fire starter.


For fire starting I carry a water tight container filled with Storm Proof matches, a “metal match”, cotton balls saturated with petrolatum jelly, Bic lighter and flint, steel and char cloth (about six or seven pieces.)

From Left to Right – Steel striker, two pieces of char cloth, and a quarter
 give perspective to char cloth size.  Outdoor Quest/Blake Miller image. 






The Urgency of Doing: Knowing is NOT Enough

Click here to view the original post.

The Urgency of Doing: Knowing is NOT Enough Its an old concept in the survival world. The title may not seem like something ground breaking. I think many of us wonder how our skills match up in comparison to our political posturing. In today’s world it is easy to be informed and hard to be experienced. That …

Continue reading »

The post The Urgency of Doing: Knowing is NOT Enough appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.

10 Must-Knows Before You Plant Fruit Trees

Click here to view the original post.

10 Must-Knows Before You Plant Fruit Trees Nothing provides a better satisfaction than being able to pick your own fruits from the trees you planted in your garden. Having a bountiful orchard is a dream come true for many gardeners, but they will all tell you that caring for it is not easy. Even more, …

Continue reading »

The post 10 Must-Knows Before You Plant Fruit Trees appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.

Inside Chicken Factory Farms—The Awful Truth

Click here to view the original post.

Despite the enormous amounts of chicken meat getting churned out daily, few people have any idea what’s really involved with raising chickens in a commercial setting.

Every year, more than 9 billion chickens1http://www.upc-online.org/chickens/chickensbro.html are raised and slaughtered in the United States, which accounts for roughly 95 percent of the land animals butchered for food each year.

The Factory Approach to Raising Chickens

As the meat industry has grown, the large companies that monopolize it consistently find ways to shield consumers from the reality of their meat. Though consumption of chicken meat has more than doubled per person since the 1970s,2https://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/food-consumption-and-nutrient-intakes.aspx few people outside the industry have ever seen the inside of a chicken farm.

While it’s easy to imagine that most chickens spend their lives scratching around in lush pasture, the truth is quite different.

To understand the way that 99 percent of chickens are raised in the United States, you need to look closer at the factory farm.

Origins of the Factory Farm

Until the 1950s, raising chickens for meat was a costly process, so most people made do with the occasional chicken dinner as a Sunday treat.

Eggs were the prized commodity, and chicken meat was considered a bonus byproduct of raising eggs. Most coops were small, housing about 60 birds, and these birds had constant access to the outdoors to nest, roost, dust bathe and enjoy other natural chicken behaviors.

By the 1980s, the egg industry scaled up and began to shift from standard coops to massive complexes that often housed a half million birds per coop.3http://www.factory-farming.com/factory_farming.html

While these measures increased productivity and made economic sense, they came at a cost to the birds’ quality of life with overcrowding, disease and high death rates.

At the same time, advances in breeding produced the ‘broiler,’4http://www.upc-online.org/books/prisoned_chickens_poisoned_eggs_2009.pdf a chicken breed that gained weight faster and more efficiently than other varieties, making it perfect for the standardized conditions factory farms use when raising chickens.

Within a matter of decades, chicken moved from a luxury good to a standard meat that most families could afford to eat almost daily.

Conditions on Factory Farms

By nature, chickens are intelligent and social birds.

They prefer to live in groups of 30 in well-defined pecking orders, and they can recognize their flock mates and bond through communal activities like dust baths and prowling pastures in pursuit of bugs.

Hens are also extremely maternal and spend large portions of their lives sitting on eggs and raising their young.

Unborn chicks even chirp to their mothers through their shells.

In almost every way, factory farms stifle natural chicken instincts and force them to live in ways that are highly unpleasant for their physical and psychological health.

Some of the common issues plaguing modern chicken farms are described below.

Overcrowding

Space is money in factory farms, so most broiler chicken facilities tend to be extremely crowded, often allotting less than one square foot per chicken.5https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/apr/24/real-cost-of-roast-chicken-animal-welfare-farms

Not only does this make it impossible for chickens to roam, scratch or find any privacy, it thwarts their natural tendency to set up a hierarchy. This inevitably causes social tensions, and chickens respond to the stress by pecking each other and fighting.

To prevent the birds from injuring each other, chicken farmers simply debeak baby chicks with a hot blade (without any anesthesia) mere hours after they hatch.

Not only are most chicken farms critically short on floor space, they are also dark, stuffy and even dangerous.

Chickens evolved in tropical forests,6http://www.upc-online.org/books/prisoned_chickens_poisoned_eggs_2009.pdf and they like nothing more than fanning out their feathers on a hot summer day.

Yet, most factory farms are windowless, meaning that the thousands of birds in each house live out their days in a dusty, ammonia-filled space without ever seeing the sun.

Raising chickens for meat - watch the film.

Questionable Breeding Practices

Most chicken eaters tend to prefer white meat, so the breast and thighs are the most valuable part of each bird.

In the past decades, chickens have been bred to capitalize on this trend, and the resulting broilers have drastically enhanced breasts and thighs, to the point that these body parts outpace the growth rates of their leg bones and organs.

While broiler skeletons are only 85 percent formed at six weeks old, their bodies are required to support far more weight than a regular bird.

This means that most broilers become so heavyset at a few weeks of age that they can barely walk, and some break their legs or suffer heart attacks from the strain.7https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17435038

It’s not unheard of for some birds to die of thirst, as their overinflated bodies can make it physically impossible for them to reach their water nozzles.

It turns out that extra fat is bad for the consumer, too.

Studies conducted in London found that modern broiler chickens have three times the amount of fat they had 35 years ago,8https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19728900 mostly due to their carbohydrate-heavy diets and inability to roam around.

Pressure in the egg industry to produce cheaper cartons can also lead to physical problems for hens. Because of genetic selection for birds that start laying eggs younger, some hens struggle to lay eggs when their bodies aren’t fully developed.

This can lead to prolapsed uteruses,9http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/04/prolapse-vent-causes-treatment-graphic.html or a uterus that gets pushed partway out of the body and immediately becomes vulnerable to infection and disease.

Because of the expense of treating illnesses like this, most prolapsed hens are left to languish until they die.

Animal Abuse

Of the 300 million laying hens10http://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/factory-farming/chickens/egg-industry/ in the United States today, over 95 percent of them spend their lives in wire battery cages, most of which provide less than the size of a sheet of paper in living space.

This provides far less room than a hen needs to turn around, flap her wings, preen, or bathe.

These hens are crammed eight or nine in each cage, and the cages are stacked on top of each other, meaning that feces and food spills on the hens below. Fresh laid eggs drop through the wires of the cage for easy collection, therefore stifling the hen’s instinct to brood.

The inability to exercise and constant egg production means that calcium leaches from the hen’s bones, often causing them to break.

Resting against metal wires also causes injuries to her skin and feet, and most hens get severe skin abrasions on their sides. The combined stress of captivity and copious egg production ensures that most hens live for two years or less.

If the living conditions in egg farms are bad for hens, they are deadly for roosters.

As male chicks can’t lay eggs, they are considered to have no value and are suffocated, electrocuted, gassed, or ground up as soon as they are sexed.

Low-Quality Feed

In the wild, chickens spend much of their days foraging for sprouts and insects, meaning that their diet provides them with plenty of nutrition.

Unfortunately, factory farm conditions provide little opportunity for similar diet supplementation.

When factory farms are raising chickens, they feed them only GMO grains, and their rations are often mixed with ground up bits from other animals,11http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/07/23/cheap-factory-farmed-chicken.aspx including the carcasses of cows, pigs and even other chickens.

Antibiotics Overuse

To keep birds healthy in overly crowded and poorly ventilated conditions, they are fed copious amounts of antibiotics.

This helps control for bacterial diseases that otherwise thrive in coop conditions and helps birds retain water to add on weight before butchering. Widespread use of antibiotics in the meat industry is leading to global problems, including the rise of antibiotic-resistant “superbugs.”12http://thegrownetwork.com/antibiotic-free-meat/

Spread of Disease

It’s naïve to think that the all chickens in the grocery were healthy when they died.

In truth, many factory farm chickens are sick for much of their lives due to living in unsanitary, overcrowded conditions.

These birds spend their lives walking through piles for their own excretion and feathers, burning their eyes from the ammonia that results. This means that factory chickens have weakened immune systems, making them more susceptible to catching diseases from other chickens.

These conditions make the salmonella bacteria easy to spread, occasionally resulting in contamination for humans from uncooked meat.

Sometimes, infections become so out of control that an entire coop of chickens needs to be put down to prevent an outbreak from exploding.

In northwestern Iowa, such a fate met the chickens of Sunrise Farms.13http://www.cnbc.com/2015/04/24/inside-sunrise-farms-avian-flu-chicken-slaughter.html

Some of the birds in the 3.8 million flock contracted a case of bird flu, meaning that every bird in the facility was condemned to death and that the facility itself was quarantined indefinitely.

Pollution

Allowing large concentrations of animals to live together in cramped conditions inevitably leads to pollution problems, and commercial chicken farms produce a tremendous amount of waste every year.

According to research, a one million-bird hen house produces 125 tons of wet manure14https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/detail/null/?cid=nrcs143_014211 every day, meaning that every truckload of feed that comes on a farm requires another load to carry waste away. This manure is often stored in massive piles where it can leak into the water system and create toxic conditions for nearby ecosystems.

Raising chickens for meat - watch the film.

Are ‘Free Range’ Farms Any Better?

As customers have gotten more informed about the true conditions factory farms provide when raising chickens, many companies have adjusted their poultry and egg production to be “free range.”

At first glance, this seems like a victory for chicken welfare, but is it?

In truth, there is no uniform standard about what it means to be raising chickens “free range.”

Chickens only need to be kept cage free and have access to the outdoors to qualify, even if they are packed onto overcrowded coop floors and their “outdoor space” is a cement pad that few birds ever venture on.

This means that the majority of ‘free range’ farms are as cramped and windowless as any other.15http://advocacy.britannica.com/blog/advocacy/2007/05/the-difficult-lives-and-deaths-of-factory-farmed-chickens/

Video: A Glimpse Inside

Ready to see inside a chicken farm yourself?

Getting photos or video footage inside a chicken coop is never easy, as the large companies that own them find it better that their customers have little idea of what’s really going on.

Farmers are often reluctant to speak up, as publicly complaining about the company they are contracted with can leave them in a lot of trouble, and often leads to hefty fines and broken contracts.

That’s why this footage from Craig Watts is so valuable.

Risking his business to reveal the truth, Craig allowed a film crew into his coops to get a look at what really goes on inside.

If you want an insider look at the way Perdue is raising chickens, watch this video to see for yourself.

In Summary

Raising chickens cheaply comes at a high cost for the planet, your health, and the well-being of the animals involved.

If you want to make a stand for healthier and more humane poultry practices, it’s important to know the reality of the dismal conditions within chicken farms today.

And consider raising your own backyard chickens … for eggs, meat, or both.   (Watch “Raising Meat Chickens – The Film” to see exactly how it’s done.)

Raising chickens for meat - watch the film.

References   [ + ]

1. http://www.upc-online.org/chickens/chickensbro.html
2. https://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/food-consumption-and-nutrient-intakes.aspx
3. http://www.factory-farming.com/factory_farming.html
4, 6. http://www.upc-online.org/books/prisoned_chickens_poisoned_eggs_2009.pdf
5. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/apr/24/real-cost-of-roast-chicken-animal-welfare-farms
7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17435038
8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19728900
9. http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/04/prolapse-vent-causes-treatment-graphic.html
10. http://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/factory-farming/chickens/egg-industry/
11. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/07/23/cheap-factory-farmed-chicken.aspx
12. http://thegrownetwork.com/antibiotic-free-meat/
13. http://www.cnbc.com/2015/04/24/inside-sunrise-farms-avian-flu-chicken-slaughter.html
14. https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/detail/null/?cid=nrcs143_014211
15. http://advocacy.britannica.com/blog/advocacy/2007/05/the-difficult-lives-and-deaths-of-factory-farmed-chickens/

The post Inside Chicken Factory Farms—The Awful Truth appeared first on The Grow Network.

Start Your Personalized Survival Plan Today!

Click here to view the original post.
I first began prepping in early 2009. I had no idea I was a “prepper” and initially hated that word! I just figured I was the smartest mom on the block, doing smart things to make sure my family was safe and cared for, no matter what might happen.
At times prepping was confusing because I would read advice that didn’t apply to me or experts I trusted gave conflicting advice. Over the years I’ve noticed that one of the weaknesses in prepping is that no 2 households or individuals are alike.
Obvious, yes, but you would never know that by reading so many prepper and survival books, blogs and the like. I mean, you can only hear, “To survive you have to move to a town of no more than 800 people or so, at least 50 miles from the nearest interstate.”
Yes, that is actual advice given by a very well known prepper expert.
But how practical is that? If you are tied to your city, town, or wherever because of a job, health issues, schools, etc. it would be downright dangerous to uproot all that, only to find yourselves in a town with zero jobs and a school 20 miles away!
My goal and vision has always been to make preparedness do-able for the average family. Yes, I am very well aware of some of the extreme and scary scenarios on the horizon that suddenly don’t seem far-fetched anymore. I keep up with current events, as you do, or you should!
However, for so many households, especially those struggling to make ends meet, a year’s supply of freeze dried food that costs about the same as a cheap, used vehicle, just isn’t going to happen. How can a year’s worth of food fit into an apartment, mobile home, or a small dwelling?
Now, even with challenges it doesn’t mean prepping is out of the question! I believe all prepping begins and ends with the needs of your own family and household, including money and space challenge! It must be customized, something you can make happen in the real world.

That leads me to Preppers University

When I first had the idea of Preppers University, it centered around the concept of everyday people like you and me having the chance to actually talk with experts in a live setting and coming up with prepping solutions that are practical and make sense.
  • I’ve found that reading books, blogs, and the like can be helpful, but I always had questions that remained unanswered.
    How would an EMP affect my mother-in-law’s cardiac monitor?
  • Is it true that an EMP will disable virtually all cars? If so, which ones are best to have? How accurate is the scenario of One Second After?
  • If you want to start a prepper group, what dangers should you watch out for? How can you identify unstable people before they join your group?
  • Does water stored in 55 gallon drums need to be treated before drinking?
As a long-time prepper blogger, author, and podcaster, I’ve had an advantage most of you haven’t had — I’ve been able to chat with people like James Rawles, Selco, Arthur T. Bradley, FerFAL, and so many more. In between official interview questions, I could say, “Hey, I’ve been wondering…”, and then get to hear their answers to my personal questions.
Sneaky, huh?  🙂

Well, THAT is why the core of Preppers University is connecting these experts (and we only choose those who aren’t armchair know-it-alls), with you. It’s a unique opportunity that isn’t available anywhere else. You have the chance to ask your questions of these experts and work on solutions that will fit your family, budget, and circumstances.
To me, that is what getting prepared is all about, not following advice that makes sense for someone else who isn’t living your life!

A flash sale — lowest price this season!

That brings me to today’s 24 hour Flash Sale. Through noon tomorrow, Tuesday, May 9, both the Prepping Intensive and Advanced Intensive classes are marked down by $40. At $99, it’s the lowest price this season.
If you’d like to take both classes or sign up with a friend, it’s an even better bargain — $175. That second class would make a great Mother’s Day gift, by the way!
I hope this discount helps you grab some training that might otherwise be out of your price range.
Remember, the sale ends at noon tomorrow, and then the price goes back to $139 (still a bargain at less than $5 per webinar).
If you’ve already checked out the Preppers University website and are ready to sign up, click here.
Life comes at you fast, and you’d better be prepared! I know that is something I, and the team at Preppers University, can help you with.
P.S. If you’re reading this after the Flash Sale ends, the price of $139 per class is still a bargain — less than $6 per webinar. We’ve kept the regular price low and even have a 3-payment plan to help.

Staying Focused On Prepping: 30 Awesome Quotes To Keep You Motivated

Click here to view the original post.

Motivation Monday

What quotes come to mind on a day that has been particularly hard? What quotes keep you going when times get tough?

Staying motivated long-term isn’t the easiest thing in the world, and when it comes to prepping, it’s so easy to get distracted. I tracked down these quotes that I found to be particularly motivating.

Grab some colorful post it notes, copy down your favorite quotes and stick them on places you will see often.

 

Don’t Give Up

“When the world says, ‘Give up,’ Hope whispers, ‘Try it one more time. ” ~ Author unknown

“I must do something’ always solves more problems than ‘Something must be done.” ~Author unknown

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” ~Confucius

“Where there is no struggle, there is no strength.” ~Oprah Winfrey

“We will either find a way, or make one!” ~Hannibal

“A determined soul will do more with a rusty monkey wrench than a loafer will accomplish with all the tools in a machine shop.” ~Robert Hughes

“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.” ~Michael Jordon

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” ~C. S. Lewis

Character Counts

“Success is always temporary. When all is said and done, the only thing you’ll have left is your character.” ~Vince Gill

“Be prepared and be honest.” ~John Wooden

“When you’re forced to STAND ALONE… you R E A L I Z E what you have in You!” ~Uma Thurman

“There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.” ~Aristotle

Prepardness

“A community is like a ship; everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm.” ~Henrik Ibsen

“Forewarned, forearmed; to be prepared is half the victory.” ~Miguel de Cervantes

“What is down will go up. At the same time, you have to be prepared for what is up to go down.” ~William Shatner

“Mother Nature may be forgiving this year or next year but eventually, she’s going to come around and whack you. You’ve got to be prepared.” ~Geraldo Rivera

“Prepare and prevent, don’t repair and repent.” ~Author Unknown

Strength

“When you are required to exhibit strength, it comes.” ~Joseph Campbell

“God does not take away trials or carry us over them, but strengthens us through them.” ~Pusey

“He who has a WHY to live for can bear almost any how.” ~Friedrich Nietzsche

Faith and Endurance

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storms to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” ~Vivian Greene

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” ~Martin Luther King Jr.

“Forget about going ‘the extra mile.’ Go ‘the extra inch’ in everything you do today!” ~Tom Peters

“Take a lesson from the wildflower: rise up from the dirt in a bad environment and thrive.”

“A life lived in fear is a live half lived.”

“The harder you work, the better you get.” ~Thomas Justin McAfee-Barry

“Little by little, a little becomes a lot.” ~ Tanzanian Proverb

“If the wind will not serve, take to the oars.” ~Latin Proverb

When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it. ~Henry Ford

“Never be afraid to do something new. Remember, amateurs built the ark; professionals built the titanic.”

Be Happy

“The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their troubles.”

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.” ~Dr. Seuss

“Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow; it empties today of its strength.” ~Corrie Ten Boom

“Focus on how far you’ve come, not how far you have to go.”

“Sometimes we are all too quick to count down these days that we forget to make the days count.” ~Unknown

“Never forget that Today is the Tomorrow that you worried about Yesterday.”

“A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book.” ~Irish Proverb

“What a wonderful life I’ve had! I only wish I’d realized it sooner.” ~Colette

“To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Celebrate any progress. Don’t wait to be perfect.” ~Ann McGee Cooper

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”

Attitude and Action

“Action is the antidote to despair.” ~Joan Baez

“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” ~Walt Disney

“Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.” ~Napoleon Hill

“Life is what we make it, always has been, always will be.” ~Grandma Moses

“It’s not what happens to you that determines how far you will go in life; it is how you handle what happens to you.” ~Zig Ziglar

“Two men look out the same prison bars; one sees mud and the other stars.” ~Frederick Langbridge

“Everyone has his burden. What counts is how you carry it.” ~Merle Miller

The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me. ~Ayn Rand

“Remember this: that very little is needed to make a happy life.” ~Aurelius

“Always look at what you have left. Never look at what you have lost.” ~Robert H. Schuller

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” ~Buddha

“Note to self: finding a cool quote and writing it in your journal is not a substitute for Getting. It. Done.” ~Betsy Cañas Garmon

“Anybody running beats anybody walking, and anybody walking beats anybody sitting.” ~Tom Bunk

“Do it now. Sometimes later becomes never.”

Dale: “‘Cause at least I can say when the world goes to shit, I didn’t let it take me down with it.” ~The Walking Dead

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” ~Chinese Proverb

“Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement.” ~W. Clement Stone

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” ~Arthur Ashe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Spyderco Roadie Little Big EDC Slipjoint Knife Review

Click here to view the original post.
Spyderco Roadie Little Big EDC Slipjoint Knife Review

Over the past few years, the amount of Spydercos I’ve reviewed has dwindled. A lot of this is due to the relative high cost of the new stuff (Mamba anyone?) or what I would define as thoroughly uninspired designs (Polestar… what where you thinking Sal?!), but every once in a while Spyderco releases something that screams […]

This is just the start of the post Spyderco Roadie Little Big EDC Slipjoint Knife Review. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!


Spyderco Roadie Little Big EDC Slipjoint Knife Review, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.

How to cope with the precipitation: Ten tips for comfortable camping in the rain

Click here to view the original post.

There is nothing like rain to make you appreciate sunshine! After decades of backpacking and scouting, I have learned some ways to cope with rainy weather while camping.

7 Reasons You Should Raise Backyard Chickens

Click here to view the original post.

Not only is the idea of backyard chickens a fun one, there is so much to gain from this little, feathered friend. Owning chickens for me is about a mutual relationship where they offer me so much and I am responsible for protecting them. This is not always an easy thing to do. Chickens are […]

The post 7 Reasons You Should Raise Backyard Chickens appeared first on Urban Survival Site.

The Day Lulu Died [excerpt from “Til Death Do Us Part?”]

Click here to view the original post.

[an excerpt from “Til Death Do Us Part?”, a Kindle book, also available as a pdf from www.SchoolofSelf-Reliance.com.]
I was startled awake by the loud crackling of thunder at 2:30 a.m.  I could see the bright flashes of light outside.  The storm was overhead.  I went outside into the darkness, and the sky would light up with the bright flash, and the thunder shook the house. It began to rain.  Mid-August and it’s raining.  To me, Lulu was saying goodbye, leaving us as she moved along in the spirit world.
Lulu died at 5 p.m. yesterday, August 14.  I saw her about five minutes after she died in Dolores’ arms.  Lulu, a purebred pitbull, was Dolores’ dog who lived with us for all of her ten years. Lulu was a gift from Dolores’ daughter, Barbara, and Dolores LOVED Lulu!
The day she arrived, the little feisty dog took charge of the other two pitbulls, even though she was tiny enough to fit in one hand.  Her tail had this zig-zag coloration like a lightning bolt, a good indication of her character.
Dogs are just like children. Their characters are silly, playful, jealous.  No two are alike.  Lulu loved attention and loved to be with us.  When she came into our home, Cassius and Ramona were with us, and all three would sleep together, and stare out the window in unison, all lined up in the same posture. It was quite a sight.
Something unusual began to occur with Lulu in the early part of 2005.  Though Lulu had a large bucket of water outside which was readily available for her to drink, she would wait until Dolores let her inside and then she would drink and drink and drink from the bowl of water kept inside for Baby.  Dolores thought that Lulu was trying to tell her something.  If Lulu was so thirsty, why not drink her available outside water?  There was nothing wrong with that water.  If Lulu was trying to communicate something to Dolores, what could that be?
At this time, when we were all out for a run with the dogs, Dolores noticed that Lulu seemed tired, unable to run as swiftly as usual.  Something was wrong.
At the animal doctor, Dolores learned that Lulu had both diabetes and cancer.  Thus began a new era with Lulu, which lasted about five months, where she was given special foods and some pills designed to strengthen her. 
She grew thinner and thinner, yet she loved being with us and going places.  She seemed aware that something was wrong with her body, but she attempted to continue as before. 
Gradually, in the last month, she stumbled when she walked.  We had to help her in and out of the house to use her bathroom.  In spite of her increasing inability, Lulu seemed happy, not in pain, and always determined to go out side to use the bathroom.  What a girl!
We took her to the farmer’s market and she loved being there with Dolores, seeing familiar friends, getting to walk in the open park. 
One day at the Glendale Farmers Market, someone saw how thin she was and assumed we mistreated her. They called an animal inspector out who interrogated me with great suspicion. When it was clear that we were giving Lulu exceptional care, the animal inspector tactfully suggested that it was not Lulu we were concerned about, but our own desire to be with her. The animal inspector suggested we put Lulu to sleep.  In fact, she intimated that she had the authority to remove Lulu from us and “relieve her pain” if she felt we were not handling thing properly.  Ugh! Both Dolores and I were shocked and angered that this is the quality of person (and thinking) that our tax dollars support.   We had no desire to kill off Lulu.  We could feel that Lulu wanted to be with us, that she felt great joy and comfort.  So we took her home in a hurry.
Lulu’s walk became more difficult, and she lost most of her sight in the last two weeks.  We could feel the cancerous growths on her stomach and underside.  We could feel that Lulu was often sad, but she would sleep all day now, though she would eat and drink and go to the bathroom once or twice.  She wagged her tail when I came in.
When I last saw her alive Saturday night, I hugged her and touched her, and told her as I always told her, that she needed to get some meat on her body.  I always encouraged her to get better, hoping, dreaming for a miracle that she would.
On Sunday, I called Dolores on my cell phone when I was out shopping.  Dolores had me talk to Lulu over the phone, and say hello to her.  Dolores said that Lulu made an effort to wag her tail when she heard my voice.
When I came back, I could see the sadness in Dolores’ face. Yes, you can go see Lulu, she told me. Lulu was covered in a towell.  Dolores explained how Lulu really perked up in the morning when Dolores sat with Lulu and began mentally reviewing pictures of their good times together.  Dolores said that she did it again after we talked on the phone, and Lulu died in her lap.
Suddenly, the life was gone from her. It was a dramatic change,” said Dolores
We sat there on Sunday with Lulu, still talking to her, feeling the emptiness of a good friend now gone. It was like the end of the world.  We wished Lulu would be with us longer, another day, another week. We petted her, hugged her, the poor little girl who was now skin and bones. 
There is an emptiness now where there once was Lulu.  It cannot be drowned away with drink or drugs or distractions.  It can only be acknowledged. 
The solution to the sadness and the emptiness was to honor her life, and then to  love the living even more, and to smile.

Gardening With Children: 5 Tips To Get Them Outside

Click here to view the original post.

The post Gardening With Children: 5 Tips To Get Them Outside is by
Craig Scott and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Getting your kids into the garden is not always the easiest thing to do. Screens and air conditioning make the inside seem a lot more appealing than the outside. You probably already know the benefits of time spent in the yard and away from the couch, but how do we help our kids understand them? […]

The post Gardening With Children: 5 Tips To Get Them Outside is by
Craig Scott and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Congressional Expert: North Korea Prepping to Launch EMP attack Aimed At U.S.

Click here to view the original post.

Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security is warning North Korea may be able to launch EMP attack on the U.S. […]

The post Congressional Expert: North Korea Prepping to Launch EMP attack Aimed At U.S. appeared first on Off Grid Survival – Wilderness & Urban Survival Skills.

Essential Survival Self Defense Tips

Click here to view the original post.

By The Survival Place Blog

When you’re a survivalist, you have to be ready for any eventuality, and that includes an attack that comes when you’re unarmed. Such a scenario can be completely terrifying, especially if your attacker has a weapon, but if you are prepared, and you know how to defend yourself, chances are you will come out the other side with nothing more than a few scratches and bruises.

Here are some of the most essential self defense tips every survivalist should know about:

Just Fight Dirty

If someone attacks you and you’re unarmed, you don’t have to play by any rules. You should do whatever you can to get yourself out of the situation you’re in. At this website, they recommend going for the groin, eyes, and throat of your attacker, and this is certainly a sensible course of action to take if you are able to. I would also add biting at exposed flesh to that list.

Don’t Fight on the Ground When There are Multiple Attackers

When you’re fighting one on one in sports like wrestling and many martial arts, tackling your opponent to the ground and fighting them there can be a very effective technique, but you should never be tempted to do this when you are facing two or more attackers, because it simply isn’t possible to effectively fight more than one person at a time in this way. Try to stay standing, move around as much as possible and attempt to take the assailants on one at a time.

Find a Weapon

Wherever you are, you should try to find a weapon. Look around you for anything that could be used to incapacitate an attacker, whether that be a broken off tree branch, a knife from your kitchen or boiling water from the stove. You need to find any advantage you can get if you want to be able to fight your way out of the situation you find yourself in.

Distract Your Attacker and Take Control of Their Weapon

If an attacker comes up to you holding a knife or gun and you have no option but to stand your ground and fight, your best course of action is to do whatever you can to distract the assailant, and then remove their weapon from their possession. If they are trying to steal from you, you could do this by dropping your wallet and making a move as they bend to pick it up, but if their motive is to simply do you harm, you will need to think on your feet and perhaps pretend to speak to someone behind them or make a move they weren’t expecting, to distract them effectively.

Lay Low

Of course, sometimes, one of the best things you can do to defend yourself is to keep your presence hidden. If you feel like someone threatening is approaching you, and you are able to move quickly, go hide out behind the trees or in a nearby ditch and wait for the threat to pass.
Have you ever found yourself in a threatening situation? What did you do to successfully defend yourself?

This article was originally published at The Survival Place Blog: Essential Survival Self Defense Tips

Filed under: Emergency Survival Tips

Specialized Bug Out Bags (And What’s Inside Them)

Click here to view the original post.

featured_man_mountain

bug_out_essentials_stuff‘Bug out bags’ are put together to be grabbed in a hurry. Their use stems from the bags issued by militaries to their soldiers in field situations, and it should contain everything you need to sustain yourself in an emergency situation for at least 72 hours. Ideally, every member of your group or family should have their own bug out bag with their own supplies: The more you have as a group, the better your chances of survival will be.

By Alex Coyne, a contributing author of SurvivalCache and SHTFBlog.com

Most bug out bags are aimed at meeting the most basic survival needs: That is, they contain a bit of everything for when you need to grab and go, but what if you have some more specialized needs, for example access to technology or your family’s important documents stored separately?

Here’s a look at some specialized bug out bags to go with your main kit, customized for more specific needs. (Note: Most of these are just as useful for camping or hiking as they are for grabbing in an emergency.)

Oh, yeah, and take a look at this link on YouTube for what Dr. Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory keeps in his

#1: The Medic Bag

1_med_bagThe medic bag contains your group or family’s medical supplies. Include a laminated card with each member’s details and medical history; be sure to list their full name, blood type, next-of-kin with the most recent contact details and their allergies. Your kit should also contain antibiotics, painkillers, alcohol, bandages, stitches, burn gel and/or cream, clean wipes, surgical scissors, a scalpel, cotton wool, a syringe (and the knowledge to use it!) and any other medical supplies you would normally keep in your first aid kit or might come in handy where you’re going.  Prescription medication (for chronic conditions) can be arranged in advance with your doctor or pharmacist.

#2: The Bag of Documents

Your family’s important documents can include birth certificates, passports, doctor’s reports, financial information and wills; this is by no means an exhaustive list. We highly recommend that documents like these are always kept organized neatly in the same place, with several digital backups. Consider backing up your information on DVD or Blu-Ray to keep in your bag of documents. Store hard copy documents in plastic sleeves. Make sure your bag can withstand elements like water, and make sure you don’t store your documents with (or next to) anything that can catch fire or explode.

Related: Building a Natural Emergency Shelter With No Tools

#3: The Chef’s Bag

fallkniven_phk_professional_hunting_knife_gutting-birdThere’s likely someone in your group or family who’s been appointed the head chef, and a chef – especially one on the road – could do with some decent tools. The chef’s bag is customized to hold all the tools a chef might need in the field, and this will be up to personal preference. Be sure to ask them what tools they simply can’t do without. Many tools have a portable version. Take a look at the Glamping Fold Up Pan and the Camp Chef Knife Set. The chef’s bag should also contain other chef’s essentials like their most used spices and utensils.

#4: The Hiker’s Bag

The hiker’s bag should be taken if you’re planning on going on a hiking trip. Practicality is your main goal here, and you’re looking to cover all of the bases. Take enough food to sustain yourself on the walk and for a while after should you get stuck, take along your first-aid basics, a knife, a fold-up walking stick, plenty of water and purification tablets, a map and compass and a fire-starter kit. Again, this is not an exhaustive list, just the basics.

#5: The Mechanic’s Kit

The mechanic’s kit is great for keeping in your car by default, and it’s essential if you’re going to be stuck somewhere for a while. Put simply, it’s for fixing things. A wide variety of things. The mechanic’s kit should contain the most portable tools you can find – a simple online search on Amazon will give you hundreds of options for portable tools – and odds-and-ends like wire, cable ties, glue, duct tape, rope, nails, screws, nuts and bolts. Keep documents like your car’s repair handbook (or, say, a general book on DIY and car repair) with this too: Digital backups are available, will take up much less space and can be handy should anyone else who isn’t as handy end up with the mechanic’s kit.

Check Out: Fortifying Your Home

#6: The Herbal Healer

Waterford_Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press_berries_closeAncient human groups consisted of hunter-gatherers, and modern humans are no different. The herbal healer’s bag is for the gatherer or natural healer, and should contain everything they need to gather, preserve and prepare herbs. Take this along for a hiking trip or when you go out to gather herbs, plants or fruits. A sharp, versatile knife is essential; some cords and clothespins (useful for drying), containers and bags for collecting samples; gloves; a fold-up camping shovel; seeds for starting a garden; plant nutrients; an empty spray bottle; sanitized water and wipes (for various and fairly obvious reasons); alcohol (for tinctures and sanitization). The herbal bag will likely also contain a collection of common herbs that have already been collected: These are up to you. Again, a disc with your library of plant books (with pictures for identification) should go with your kit.

#7: The Tech Junkie’s Kit

Don’t discount the usefulness of technology in a survival situation: As a journalist working online, I realize the value of connectivity. The tech junkie’s kit should be exceptionally well-padded and contain a laptop that can withstand some damage (laptops like the Sony Vaio are small yet durable), replacement cables, an additional camera (of higher quality), blank DVD’s, spare parts, an operating system on DVD (should you need to re-install your system on the go), a power bank or solar power kit, a screwdriver kit, a USB dongle (yes, even if you have a router), a mouse, backup batteries, a backup celllphone and a signal strengthener. (At the very least.)

What do you have in your bug out bag? Have you learned to add anything from yours by reading this article? Use the comments to let us know your thoughts.

How To Hide Your Car And Stay Undetected

Click here to view the original post.

Can you imagine your life without having a car? Shopping, going to work, taking kids to a game or going to the doctor without having a mean of transportation would turn into a nightmare. Your life is spinning in the rhythm of our four-wheeled companion.

In a bug out situation, your life will depend on your vehicle even more, so make sure you take good care of it and prepare it to remain unnoticed.

If you live in the city, bugging out may be less about driving on uneven terrain and more about avoiding rioters and traffic jams.

The vehicle that you are going to use must look like it belongs in the area you are traveling through. Depending on where you are and what is going on, there will be times when you can use these tips, and times when you should adjust them in order to avoid specific problems.

Why Customization is a Failure

Many preppers try to customize their vehicles with lift kits, unusual tire types, roof lights, and other items that may or may not actually expand the usefulness of the vehicle. In most cases, the benefits you may get from this customization does not equal the loss of capacity to blend on city or suburb streets.

Some also believe that a heavily armored tactical vehicle will deter rioters and troublemakers. This is a very bad mindset: mercenaries will see the vehicle as a sign of wealth, and do anything in their power to steal it or kill you to get it.

This defense system will make your home invisible to looters!

Essential Parts of a Camouflage Kit

You might travel through different neighborhoods with different wealth levels and cultural values, so a vehicle camouflage kit would be useful. If you haven’t surveyed the areas and mapped them out, then do so before you drive through. At the very least, if you need to make changes to the vehicle, you can do so before driving through.

Spray Paint

Always keep a few cans of different colored spray paint, gray primer, and other colors of primer in the vehicle. Gray primer is especially useful because rioters and looters will think the vehicle is junked out and pass it by in favor of vehicles that may have something of value to steal.

You can use these paints to make the vehicle look old and rusted out, or you can use them to spruce up the vehicle so that it looks newer.

Video first seen on mycoolkeno

Repair Kits

Fiberglass body repair kits can also be used to change the appearance of the vehicle. Make sure you have some simple body working tools to do the job right.

Different Color Duct Tape

Use dark colored duct tape to cut down on visible light that can be seen at night from the vehicle headlights, tail lights, and running lights.

Duct tape can also be used to give an illusion it is holding two broken body parts together even if they are intact. You can use this to make doors, windows, and fenders look so old, anyone looking at them would think there is nothing of value in the vehicle.

Rolls of Exhaust System Repair Tape

These rolls of tape can make a perfectly good exhaust system look like it is in very bad shape and is ready to fail at any moment.

Any other decals, stickers, or pieces of metal that can help to give the vehicle an illusion of being a junker, or conversely, like it belongs to a wealthier person that belongs in a specific neighborhood.

When using the camouflage kit, the most important thing is how well you blend into your local surroundings. You don’t want to look too affluent, too weak, or unable to protect yourself.

Find that happy medium that tells the rioters and other troublemakers that you can handle yourself without arousing suspicion of local people that can also cause problems.

Why Choosing Your Vehicle Wisely Makes Sense

It is not easy to find the perfect bug out vehicle that will address your needs and also be easy to conceal. In general, the outer aspects of the vehicle should match the times and styles of the areas you will be traveling through.

Stay away from brand new vehicles, or ones that are so old people will remember them because they look different. The outer body of the vehicle should look between 3 and 7 years old and be common looking.

The Size of the Vehicle

When it comes to hiding your bug out vehicle in plain sight, size is also an important factor to consider. By instinct, you will more than likely want a pickup truck or something large enough to carry a lot of items from one area to another.

In a time of social unrest, however, pickup trucks can easily be a target because they have a stereotype of being rough, reliable, dependable, and able to carry things of great value. On the other hand, a medium sized SUV looks as common and nondescript on a city street as it does on a small town road.

Remember, your vehicle must also disguise who and what you are. The last thing you will want is for people to realize that you are a prepper, and therefore have valuable skills, materials, and supplies. From this perspective, you can get away with a larger vehicle as long as it looks normal for the area.

You might be forced to leave the vehicle in a secure location, including an underground location, in a wooded area, or even parked in a cave. For these situations, you would be better off with a smaller vehicle simply because there are more places where you can hide it with less effort.

What About Trailers

Outside of the question of hiding your vehicle, trailers are useful for bringing along more supplies and even for living space. If you are trying to blend in or drive through a crowd of rioters, a trailer can be a huge liability.

Aside from making your vehicle easy to spot, a trailer can make the entire vehicle harder to handle. Not only will you be unable to simply unhitch the trailer and leave it behind, all avenues of escape may be cut off by masses of people.

Camouflage and Concealment: What You Need to Know

You have to take full responsibility for your own safety, and one of the best ways to do it is to stay inconspicuous. Even if you are armed and well trained, it is still better to avoid being attacked.

Camouflage and concealment are different, but related skills. Concealment is making yourself hard to see. Camouflage is changing something’s appearance so it’s harder to notice. Camouflage does not need to involve making whatever you’re camouflaging look like something else. All you need to do is make sure it doesn’t look like what it actually is.

And here are the six basic aspects of camouflage and concealment you need to learn.

Vehicle Shape

The human eye is naturally drawn to anything that looks out of place or familiar, however large numbers of the same thing can cause viewers to overlook similar items. If there are relatively few vehicles in the area, you will need to make your vehicle harder to see. Vehicles or the shape of a human being will all stand out unless they are disguised, and the most effective way to avoid this is to break up the shape by using a camouflage pattern.

A good camouflage pattern doesn’t work by mimicking the background around it. Instead, it disguises the outline of a familiar or unnatural shape by breaking it into smaller or regular ones. Contrasting colors are the best way to do this. You can borrow the idea of military camouflage patterns to match the surrounding colors.

Another way to camouflage a parked vehicle is to use a camouflage net, but never just drape the net over the vehicle. Support it with poles or cut branches to create an irregular shape. When using poles fit some kind of spreader to the end to keep the net from slipping down over them.

Shine

There are many shiny things in nature, and they do attract attention. If the vehicles around yours look shiny and bright, a dull vehicle will stick out and be noticed. Oddly enough, what you wear while you are driving can also draw unwanted attention.

No matter what neighborhood you are driving through, avoid wearing anything that will produce a flash or a shine. Remove all jewelry and your watch and put them in your pocket. Reflections of light on your skin can also be very visible. Use camouflage cream to make it harder for others to see you.

Shine is a big problem for vehicles. If you want the vehicle to look run down and useless, remove or paint any chrome work. Cover it with 100mph tape, or burlap. When the vehicle is parked, cover the windows, lights, mirrors, or anything else that might reflect light with burlap sacks, or better yet an old tarp that makes it looks like the windows might be cracked.

Shadows

Always be aware of the position of the sun when you stop to rest or shelter. It is possible to be hidden in dense vegetation enough to conceal your vehicle, but still enough light to cast a distinctive shadow on the ground. If you are moving inside of a tree line and throwing a shadow outside of it, the movement of the shadow can reveal that you are there. To hide the shadow move further into the trees.

Even if you have the vehicle parked under a camouflage net, that shadow will give everything away. To get rid of this shadow problem, hang a skirt of burlap around the bottom of the vehicle after you have parked. Another way to break up the shadow is to fill this gap area with light brush. If you can, park in vegetation that reaches a couple of inches above the bottom of the doors. Always pay attention to wheel well shadows that must also be removed.

Silhouette

A silhouette is basically a shape against a contrasting background. The classic way to reveal your position by silhouetting is to cross the skyline. Anyone at or below your level will see your outline. If you are following a ridge line do not move along the crest. Stay off to one side and far enough down so that the ridge is between you and the sky.

If you must cross the high ground, look for cover such as trees or a dip in the ridge. To reduce your silhouette as much as possible, you may have to wait until it is darker and you can drive across undetected.

The sky is not the only thing you can be silhouetted against. You must always be aware of what is behind you. It does not matter how well camouflaged you are. Try to avoid moving in front of anything that is a stronger contrast with your vehicle.

Picking the right location is a huge aid to help minimize silhouettes when picking overnight camps. Remember If your are in cover you are not silhouetted against anything so build your camp in the woods. Pick your locations surrounded by higher ground so anyone approaching will be silhouetted, but you will not.

Metallic and Heat Signature

In the modern age, all kinds of equipment can be used to spot a vehicle no matter how well you disguise it for human eyes. Try coating the vehicle in specialized paints or other materials that will prevent your vehicle from showing up on scans designed to pick up metallic objects in unusual places, or heat signatures from the engine and exhaust.

Sound

A muffler in good repair is very important for preventing others from hearing the sound of your vehicle’s engine. Don’t forget to turn off the sound system and anything else that will create too much noise.

Hiding your vehicle isn’t especially complicated if it is your sole objective. As a prepper, however, you will find there are many conflicting needs that will interfere with things that will work best insofar as hiding your vehicle.

In the end, it will be up to you to decide what balance you will draw between all of these opposing needs.

Interested to keep your family safe? Click the banner below for more!

This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia. 

The Powerless Church

Click here to view the original post.

     I guess I could characterize this post as a continuation of Friday’s, which was titled It’s Not Enough!  Because I think I know the people who tune into read my humble thoughts, I’m pretty sure that there are many of you who are wondering just what it looks like to exhibit the Power of the Kingdom in your lives.  And I feel as though I need to further explain what I mean by my frustration with The Church.  I know that this offends some of my Christian brethren because “The Church” belongs to Jesus, and my statements are often construed as divisive and negative towards what Jesus calls “My Church”.  Let me first, dispel those false impressions, and then I will try to be more specific about what I would recommend for living a “Kingdom life”.

     When I talk about the Church, I am referring to the Body of Christ — those individuals who have been “called” from their life of sin, and “chosen” to separate themselves from the world and walk in the righteous way of Jesus; who with one purpose, one mind, and one heart follow and do the teachings of Jesus.  Now, for the last several hundred years, that Body has been assembled in congregations who have determined that “it is through the Church that God manifests His highest purposes, and the Church must be the most glorious of all His works”.

     Modern Charismatic and Evangelistic movements point to the so-called fivefold ministry in Ephesians 4 as the primary custodians of today’s Church — the offices of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors (or “shepherds”) and teachers. It seems to me that their mission is built upon the foundation of the holy Scriptures and upheld by the pillars of the Gospel of Salvation, Grace,  Love, and Glory of the Lord.  They will say that it is their goal to replicate the model that Jesus showed us and to see their congregants reach the neighborhoods and the nations with the Gospel.

     That is a noble mission, and nothing wrong with that.  But I don’t see the most obvious component of Jesus’s model … the Power of His Father that was exhibited through Him and the works He did.  And if I am going to hold to Jesus’s model of the Church, I find no specific instructions from Him to “to associate yourselves into particular societies or churches” as one popular Reformation preacher prescribes.  And I do not believe that if, as a Christian, you “are not walking with a local congregation of believers, then you are not walking with God”.  I must say that statements like that offend me
     Were the Twelve Apostles part of a local congregation or synagogue?  No, they walked with Jesus.   And what did Jesus do? He manifested the Glory, and Mercy, and Love, and POWER of God, did He not?  He did what He heard the Father tell Him to do, and what He saw the Father doing in Heaven.  So, I think it is safe to surmise that His Gospel message of the Kingdom of Heaven was the Good News of what the Father was doing, and desired to be done by His Son to show the Father’s Glory.  
     When Jesus announced that the “Kingdom of Heaven was at hand”, He was saying, I am going to show you what it is like in Heaven by my actions.  Watch what I do by the Power given to me by My Father.  And when you have understood that it is for His Glory, then I will give you the Authority to use that same Power to make the Kingdom of God a reality here on earth.  
     But do you notice the characteristics that our religious organizations choose to use to magnify The Father?  His Gospel, His Grace, His Love, and His Glory.  Now, I don’t want you to misunderstand me — those aren’t wrong!! They are just incomplete!  Religion today teaches us we are to imitate Jesus and the Father by manifesting Their Grace and Their Glory — and I agree.  But where is the promotion of the Power that Jesus exhibited as a picture of His Father in Heaven? It has been all but eliminated from “The Church”.
     So, I want to be very clear that when I say I am frustrated by The Church, and that what we, as the Body of Christ, are accomplishing “is not enough”, I am talking about the “Powerless Church” who concentrates on the Gospel of Salvation, instead of the Gospel of the Kingdom, which Jesus said was the purpose for which He was sent (Luke 4:43).  And that “Good News” of the Kingdom was to be preached everywhere and revealed in signs and wonders  — healing the sick, delivering people from the torment of the Enemy, and even raising people from death — all so there could be no mistaking God’s Love, His Grace, and HIS POWER! All that adds up to His Greatness, or His Glory.
     So, now to address what that looks like for me and you.  Believe me, I know that all this sounds like it is going to involve us getting uncomfortable with our status quo.  And that’s exactly what Jesus demands of us!  Can you imagine how the Apostles felt?  They were taken from their ordinary lives, and found themselves working with strangers (and even people they despised, as in the case of Levi, the tax collector).  They were accustomed to being innocuous members of their synagogues, akin to sitting quietly in a pew in the back row of some church today.  They were used to following the rituals and traditions of that synagogue, and their personal relationship with God [who had chosen them as a people to glorify Him] was more habitual and routine than intimate.

     But what did Jesus tell them they would do? “You will receive Power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth”.  They didn’t stay in their synagogues and minister within the buildings.  They were sent out into the world to make a difference!  Just look at the places the Apostles went to with the message  that “the Kingdom of God is at hand” … Spain, Greece, Iran, Ethiopia, India, even Great Britain!  And  we can’t even get the message (let alone the works) out of the building to the prostitute on the corner, or the local drug dealer!  Where is the power in that?  

     But why are so many of our Churches (and us) powerless today?  What are we afraid of?  Perhaps we are frightened of being deceived by charlatans.  But doesn’t that express Doubt in the Holy Spirit to counsel us and guide us?  Or does it go deeper than that, and actually show Unbelief in the Power of God to act through us today?  We must have a call to action to touch the individual lives of people in our own cities, neighborhoods, and communities. First and foremost, that requires teaching people what the Kingdom of God means and how Jesus manifested that on earth.  And if we are afraid of poking the devil, then aren’t we saying that we believe his power is greater than our God’s power to protect us?
      If we are going to transform the culture, the culture needs to know what the Kingdom of God looks like.  If we are following Jesus and His commands then it should look like this … recognizing the needs of both our fellow Believers and the Lost.  It looks like us asking them if they need prayer for issues in their life, and if the answer is healing, then we do as Jesus did and lay hands on them, calling on the Power of the Father in us (which is the Holy Spirit) to heal their affliction. We are to believe that God can use us to see them healed on earth, as it is in Heaven.  
     If they are being attacked by entities in their sleep, or tormented by voices in their head, then we are to do what Jesus showed the Apostles, and in His Name, bind and cast out those demons.  Anything that we saw Jesus do, we also have the power to do because He sent His power when the Holy Spirit came to reside in us.  And just like the Apostles and the Disciples after them, we are to be His witnesses unto the ends of the earth.
     We live in a hurting world, just as it was in the days that Jesus walked this earth. And yes, it’s good to hear sermons in our Churches that we are to “live a life of joy in the midst of brokenness” and to “not love the things that God hates”, but where is the call to action that should be going along with that message?  How does that transform the lives of people who need to see the works of God manifested by the Body of Christ? 
    We are called to be Sons and Daughters of the Kingdom.  And Jesus has given us the perfect model to invade the culture with God’s Kingdom.  I invite you to read the Four Gospels and take notes of the works that Jesus did, and His instructions to His followers.  Everywhere He went, He taught about what the Kingdom of God was, and then He did the works that would bring this earth into alignment with His Father’s Kingdom.  
     Will we be uncomfortable doing them?  Certainly. But no more than the Twelve were when He commanded them to do the same works.  And will the culture and our religious institutions criticize, censure, and revile us? Again, just like they did when Jesus showed the First Century Believers how to walk with God.  But does Jesus need laborers in the field, and witnesses to spread the Good News?  Every bit as much as He needed it in 30 A.D.  Are you willing to be a member of His True Church; the Son or Daughter of the Kingdom that is willing to leave the life you have known for a road that will be difficult to travel, and without many rewards this side of Heaven? I will grant you that it is a scary proposition, but as a very dear friend of mine said, the only answer we ought to give is, “Yes, Master”!

1 Peter 2:21    “For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in His steps”.

     

When Plans Change Good Things Can Happen

Click here to view the original post.

When it comes to our homesteading journey we are at a point now that we’ve learned two lessons. One, things cost more than we thought they would. And two, things take longer to do than expected. Those combined can really impact a yearly goals list. You’ll see what I mean later. 2016 started out with […]

The post When Plans Change Good Things Can Happen appeared first on Trayer Wilderness.

Alternative soil conditioners for organic gardening

Click here to view the original post.

The soil in your garden is a very complex structure of elements and it has both advantages and disadvantages. To improve the soil and keep a successful garden you need to apply soil conditioners. The ones described in this article are alternatives to compos and manure. Over the years I’ve experienced with various types of … Read more…

The post Alternative soil conditioners for organic gardening was written by Rhonda Owen and appeared first on Prepper’s Will.

Money Mondays: Borrowing from the Emergency Fund

Click here to view the original post.

This post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com Yesterday was a normal day until we got inside our truck.   I noticed a huge crack running across the front windshield.   It started on the bottom right corner (passenger side) pointing up, then curved across toward the left, ending on the driver’s side.   We never saw anything hit the windshield or any point of impact.  It just cracked.  I researched the internet for clues on what might have caused it.  Most of […]

The post Money Mondays: Borrowing from the Emergency Fund appeared first on Apartment Prepper.

Will A Triggering Event In North Korea Change What You Are Doing?

Click here to view the original post.

I recently received an email from someone who expressed the following conern: “I’m getting a bit antsy about a potential triggering event in North Korea that might lead to a wider situation, for which we as a nation are not yet ready.” And here’s the topic launch, a hypothetical: “What if you came upon evidence […]

Learn How to Properly Sandbag Your Home Before the Next Storm Arrives

Click here to view the original post.

Anytime a major storm is approaching, time is of the essence to prepare. We all see the same thing on the news, images of first responders and volunteers constructing sandbag barriers to hold back a potential flood. But have you ever seen that and asked yourself if you know how to build a sandbag barrier? I’d wager that most people don’t, because by all appearances, building up a wall of sandbags is a very simple task. It’s physically demanding, but not complex at all, so most people probably assume that if they ever had to protect their home from a flood, working with sandbags would come naturally.

However, just because a task is simple, that doesn’t mean that it lacks finer points. There is definitely a right way and a wrong way to build a sandbag barrier. If you’ve never been taught the right way, check out the following video. It was produced by Australia’s SES, a volunteer organization that provides emergency services during disasters. In a few short minutes, it explains all of the most basic and important tips you need to know to protect your home during a flood.

That tells you pretty much everything you need to know about using sandbags to hold back minor floods. However, if you think that a storm is going to produce a more serious flood, you may need to build a much more extensive barrier; perhaps something that will fully surround the perimeter of your home.

If that’s the case, you should check out this video from Canada, which also offers a more in-depth analysis on sandbag construction.

Of course, the best way to ensure that your home will be safe from flooding is to have the tools you need in place, long before the flooding starts. If a major storm system is moving in, then people are going rush to the stores to buy things like sandbags, so they’ll be in short supply during an emergency. You should buy plastic sheeting and sandbags ahead of time. And if you don’t think that you’ll have access to sand, there are several varieties of bags that don’t require it. They work by absorbing large quantities of water, which form a barrier that can hold back the rest of the water.

 

80% of the population lives near a coast. If you haven’t prepared for hurricanes, get the step-by-step guide on how to prepare for any disaster.

Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.

Joshua’s website is Strange Danger

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

50 Mistakes Made By Preppers and What to Do About Them

Click here to view the original post.

50 Mistakes Made By Preppers and What to Do About Them | Backdoor Survival

The longer you have been prepping, the more you realize how easy it is to get sidetracked and to prep for things, that in the big picture, are of a relatively low priority. It is no wonder that articles on prepper mistakes and lessons learned are so popular.

With the wisdom gained from living as a prepper for the last seven years, here are fifty common and uncommon prepper mistakes we can learn from.
.

The post 50 Mistakes Made By Preppers and What to Do About Them by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Nuclear Survival: Part Two

Click here to view the original post.

Nuclear Survival: Part Two Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! Last week’s show on Nuclear Survival (see here) was a great start to a challenging topic, but there is so much more to cover. Chuck Hudson, founder of The Medic Shack survival school, will be joining us again for a second week … Continue reading Nuclear Survival: Part Two

The post Nuclear Survival: Part Two appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.