Most emergency sites give you plenty of data for your human family which should be headed. But very few cover additional information for those with farm stock. As we are preparing for the severe wind and rain leftovers of a typhoon riding the jet stream to us from Asia; many additional preparations have had to be addressed. I'll share some of those with you here. By the way- a good link for the human side of things is :
For the last three days we have been rechecking fencelines, weighing down metal roofing and siding products, filling every stock tank we own to capacity which gives us enough water for about a week for our stock, raising the stall levels on our new barn to decrease the chance of water getting into the stalls, retarping and tying our temporary shelters as not all of our stock is in the barn, moving some small stock (our bucks and bucklings) into our stock trailers which will protect them from any branches (we are not expecting lightning, in which case the trailers wouldn't be a safe choice). We're also stocked up with cured wood at the house for our woodstove for cooking and warmth and our generator is ready to go including extra fuel for it for use in the house or with our milking equipment if needed.
We've also had to add additional t posts to temporary shelter sides and put additional ties in them to hold them strongly to the ground. The barn yard has been picked up from anything loose that could fly around including plastics left over from barn construction to prevent any animal from getting into contact with them and consuming them.
We are also in the process of retopping a few trees that are weak and a hazard of coming down onto farm buildings. Those happen to be some shallow rooted pine trees that were topped by a previous owner probably ten or more years ago. Our longterm plan for those is to remove them after we have other trees (deep rooted fir and cedar which can handle winds much better) as well as planting them several trees thick instead of the single tree line that takes the full brunt of weather from the north. Then those pretopped weakened pines will come down. We also have other tree lines planned to help cut wind action on our farm. Your county conservation district is a great resource for inexpensive trees. Fall is the time to get on the email or other contact lists as many have plant sales in the winter where one can buy bundles of 15 to 25 of trees and shrubs native to your area. This is where most of my western red cedar and douglas fir will come from, as well as wild crabapples, service berry, oso berry, etc.
Though I'm not expecting us to be without power for more than a day here, it is possible. We live at the 'end of the world' in the country (look up Sequim, WA for fun if you like), if bridges are damaged along an approximately two hour driving route or mudslides block roads along Hood Canal and some of the Pacific coast roads are damaged then we can get landlocked in. So besides making sure we have extra grain and hay on hand, water becomes very important. How much water do you need:
Though emergency sites want you to plan for three days, if you are rural you should plan for longer. At least a week for your human and critter supplies. This is for MODERATE weather. For weather warmer than seventy degrees additional water will be needed. Mini stock such as cattle etc can be figured as a percent of standard sized stock. Ie: if your mini beef cow weights 40% of it's standard component than multiply 40% by the daily water requirment for the standard animal to get their requirement.
Dogs and cat's: Plan for 1/2 quart (1 pound) of water PER TEN POUNDS of animal PER DAY. So a 60 pound dog is going to need 3 quarts of water. If it's a working dog, such as a guardian dog, then a 100 pound dog (some guardians are larger) is going to need about 25% more water so plan for 12.5 pounds of water, which is just over 1 1/2 gallons per day. So 1 pound of water per ten pounds, but a working dog should have at least 1.25 lbs per ten pounds of dog.
Horses/Mules: Plan for 5 to ten gallons per day depending on the size of your animal. Note that Warmbloods & large draft may need even more.
Donkey's: Six gallons per day.
Dairy Cows: Thirty to fifty gallons per day.
Beef Cows: Five to seven gallons per day.
Camelids: Two to five gallons per day (the upper end is for 70 degrees and warmer weather).
Sheep/Meat Goats: One to two gallons per day.
Dairy Goats/Dairy Sheep: One to two gallons PLUS what they are milking. If a goat is milking 12# per day (1 1/2 gallons) then she will need 2 +1.5 gallons = 3.5 gallons per day per milker. It's always better to save more water than you find you will need!
Pigs: One to two gallons per day. Remember that lactating sow will need more for her milk production!
Ratites: Three to Five gallons per bird per day.
Poultry: A laying hen will need one pound (1/2 quart or one pint) per day. Your ducks will also need water for a couple of hours every day to be able to work their oil glands to stay waterproof.
Because we have a clean metal roof on our barn (no bird poop on it) we are also able to rainbarrel from our gutters into our tanks if we need to. Ideally you want the first rains of the year to have already hit to clean dust and other foreign material off of your roof as well as to clean the air of any contaminants before you rainbarrel. A great device for this that you can install into your existing metal down spouts is called a downspout diverter. If you hook it up to a livestock tank float valve then it will shut off whenver your tank is full and redivert the water back through your downspout to the ground / drywell.
First Aid kit. Things I absolutely keep on hand are:
materials for splinting (paint stir sticks for small legs, house wood trim for larger legs).
cayenne tincture for shock, hypothermia or bleeding
cayenne powder to pour onto wounds or give internally for bleeding, shock.
HerBamine extract for pain/inflammation
Wounderful! salve for injuries or burns of any kind
GI Soother in case your animals get dirty or polluted water into their mouths.
HerBiotic salve for skin bacterial, fungal, yeast issues.
HerBiotic Herb mix for bacterial, fungal, viral, microbial (ie Giardia) issues.
Lung Support Tincture- for additional lung support from a weather event.
DWorm A- parasites often bloom after a water event (excessive rain or flooding)
And if you already don't have The Accessible Pet, Equine and Livestock Herbal- over 500 pages of herb and essential oil use it is excellent to have on hand- even if you would rather use a Vet or a medical clinic you may not have access to those during or after a weather event. This book may have to be relied on and yes- it can be used for humans!
Essential oils: Lemon, Lavender, Eucalyptus, Tea Tree .
All of these can be purchased at www.firmeadowllc.com .
Some emergencies (wildfire, hurricanes, etc) may require you to evacuate your premises. Have an evacuation plan in place AHEAD of needing to utilize it. When we lived in wildfire prone areas we had a group of friends that we could call on to help evacuate livestock to our fairgrounds (or other predetermined safe palce) if needed, and they could call on us. We also had a priority list of what would go first and what would go into what trailer and what rig would be haul which trailer. Please note that you can't wait until the final evacuation notice to do this. AT that point it's time to get out immediately and they won't let non residents into the area to help. So once you get put on notice that there is the possibility of evacuating stock needs to be moved to wait it out. Much better to be safe than sorry.
I hope that none of you ever have to use this information, but reality says that many live in areas prone to events. Thankfully for us this is a rare happening- once every 1 to 2 decades of this magnitude. We wish all of you safety, warmth and wellness for you and your creatures!
Katherine MH, CR, CA, CEIT, DipHIr, QTP has extensive alternative training in Vitalistic (cause oriented) wellness,including a Master's Degree in Herbology and has a heart to share with you so that you, your family and your creatures may achieve abundant wellness.
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