Read the Beforeitsnews.com story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
Story Views
Now:
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:
Total:

What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great Depression

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.


What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great DepressionSource: https://www.askaprepper.com/

For many preppers, livestock forms a key part of their long-term survival plans.

Shelves of canned food and a stash of home-made jerky will be a big help in getting through the weeks and months after a crisis hits, but in the longer term if you want fresh meat you’re either going to have to hunt for it or rear it yourself.

For other things – milk and eggs, for example, or wool if you plan on making your own yarn – keeping livestock is the only real option.

Of course, just a couple of generations ago a lot of our ancestors didn’t see livestock as an emergency resource; it was part of their daily lives. My own grandparents went through wartime rationing in the UK, and that was tough.

Meat, particularly, was tightly rationed. The weekly ration per person during WWII included one shilling and two pence worth of meat, which usually worked out to about a pound and a quarter, plus four ounces of bacon or ham.

Some meats, like sausages or offal, weren’t rationed; they were just almost impossible to find, because supply never came close to keeping up with demand.

Meanwhile if you got one egg a week you were lucky, except children and pregnant women who got three. Cheese? You could have two ounces a week, and another two ounces of butter.

Most people couldn’t keep a cow, or spend the time to make their own cheese and butter, but with meat and eggs in such short supply there were many who saw the value of having some livestock.

Not all of them were rural people either; in fact millions of homes in British towns and cities boosted their rations by keeping some animals. Obviously if you did live in a rural area, and had more space available, you had more options – but even in a city apartment it was possible to raise some meat.

Chickens

What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great DepressionOne of my great-grandparents was a chicken farmer, but that was on an industrial scale; he had row after row of sheds, containing thousands of birds.

My grandparents’ generation went in for chickens in a much smaller way. A few chickens didn’t take much time or effort but made a real difference to their diet.

Nowadays, chickens mostly eat food pellets – but the truth is they’ll eat almost anything. If they can wander in a yard, they’ll peck at the ground looking for insects and worms.

They’ll eat seeds, small plants and even small animals. You can feed them most kitchen scraps. They do need grains in their diets to stay healthy, but feeding them isn’t a big expense – and they’ll more than repay it.

When eggs were rationed to one a week at most (in 1944 the average British civilian got about 30 eggs on the ration through the whole year) having chickens at home made a huge difference.

Depending on breed, diet, and season, a hen can lay anywhere from one or two eggs a week to 300 a year – almost one every day. A single chicken could provide ten times the egg ration.

If they fed the chickens this plant, it made them lay at least twice as many eggs as usual. And of course, when a chicken stopped laying, it would be killed for meat.

Rabbits

What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great DepressionRabbit meat has gone out of fashion in the US, but some people still eat it – and a couple of generations ago many more did. During WWII there was a surge in rabbit-keeping in the UK.

Even chickens need at least a small yard, but apartment residents would often mount rabbit hutches outside their windows.

Like chickens, rabbits are cheap to feed. They’ll eat kitchen scraps like vegetable peelings, and their diet could be bulked out with pretty much any leafy greenery.

Some foraging for weeds in the local park, or even around bombed-out buildings, would provide plenty food for a few rabbits, and they’re fast-growing.

A baby rabbit will grow to maturity in as little as six to eight months for a meat-producing breed. Another benefit of rabbits as livestock is that they’re notoriously efficient at reproducing, so if you start off with two of them you’ll have a more or less endless supply of rabbit meat.

Pigeons

What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great DepressionIf you see a pigeon shed in someone’s yard you’re likely to assume they breed racing pigeons – but they might actually be raising them for meat and eggs.

They don’t produce anywhere near as many eggs as chickens do (usually two at a time, up to eight times a year) but they’re an efficient way to produce cheap meat.

Related: An Ingenious Way to Catch Pigeons and Other Birds in Your Own Backyard

Pigeons can be allowed out to forage during the day, and they’ll return to their shed or loft at night; they’re basically self-feeding, which takes away one of the big expenses of most livestock.

Baby pigeons, called “squabs”, will grow as big as their parents in just two months and are a great source of tender fresh meat.

Pigs

What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great DepressionPigs are a little harder to raise than chickens, rabbits or pigeons.

You’re definitely not going to keep one in an apartment. Unlike smaller animals, it needs a yard with enough space to roam free.

They’re amazingly efficient at converting kitchen scraps into protein.

If you have enough land to let them forage, they’ll happily eat grass, other plants, worms and small animals.

Pigs are omnivores and need a balanced diet, but you can feed them quite cheaply; in return you’ll get a lot of meat.

Slaughtering and processing a pig can be a big job, though. However, you can learn here the simplest method for butchering and preserving a pig for a whole year without refrigeration, just as my grandparents used to do.

Sheep

What Livestock My Grandparents Raised During the Great DepressionFor country people with a bit of land, including my grandmother, sheep were an option.

Like pigeons they’re basically self-feeding.

Turn them loose on a big enough patch of grass and they’ll just wander around it all day grazing.

They’re hardy animals too, able to survive wet or cold weather thanks to their thick wool coats.

Outside of lambing season, all you have to do is protect them from predators and make sure their grazing land is enclosed so they don’t wander off or blunder into any hazards – they’re not the smartest of creatures, and have a knack for getting lost or stuck.

Every year a sheep will have one or two lambs, which can be slaughtered for meat when they’re three to four months old.

Keeping livestock doesn’t have to be time-consuming or expensive – and it doesn’t need a lot of land, either.

Our ancestors chose the animals that worked in their personal circumstances, whether that was a dozen sheep or a couple of rabbits in a cage. There’s nothing to stop modern preppers doing the same.



Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Humic & Fulvic Liquid Trace Mineral Complex

HerbAnomic’s Humic and Fulvic Liquid Trace Mineral Complex is a revolutionary New Humic and Fulvic Acid Complex designed to support your body at the cellular level. Our product has been thoroughly tested by an ISO/IEC Certified Lab for toxins and Heavy metals as well as for trace mineral content. We KNOW we have NO lead, arsenic, mercury, aluminum etc. in our Formula. This Humic & Fulvic Liquid Trace Mineral complex has high trace levels of naturally occurring Humic and Fulvic Acids as well as high trace levels of Zinc, Iron, Magnesium, Molybdenum, Potassium and more. There is a wide range of up to 70 trace minerals which occur naturally in our Complex at varying levels. We Choose to list the 8 substances which occur in higher trace levels on our supplement panel. We don’t claim a high number of minerals as other Humic and Fulvic Supplements do and leave you to guess which elements you’ll be getting. Order Your Humic Fulvic for Your Family by Clicking on this Link , or the Banner Below.



Our Formula is an exceptional value compared to other Humic Fulvic Minerals because...


It’s OXYGENATED

It Always Tests at 9.5+ pH

Preservative and Chemical Free

Allergen Free

Comes From a Pure, Unpolluted, Organic Source

Is an Excellent Source for Trace Minerals

Is From Whole, Prehisoric Plant Based Origin Material With Ionic Minerals and Constituents

Highly Conductive/Full of Extra Electrons

Is a Full Spectrum Complex


Our Humic and Fulvic Liquid Trace Mineral Complex has Minerals, Amino Acids, Poly Electrolytes, Phytochemicals, Polyphenols, Bioflavonoids and Trace Vitamins included with the Humic and Fulvic Acid. Our Source material is high in these constituents, where other manufacturers use inferior materials.


Try Our Humic and Fulvic Liquid Trace Mineral Complex today. Order Yours Today by Following This Link.

Report abuse

    Comments

    Your Comments
    Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

    MOST RECENT
    Load more ...

    SignUp

    Login

    Newsletter

    Email this story
    Email this story

    If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

    If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.