Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Tokyo (CNN) -- A farmer's farewell, etched in white chalk, is echoing menacingly through Japan's agricultural sector.

"Wish there was no nuclear power plant. My endurance has come to an end," the note says.

The farmer, in his 50s, then killed himself on the land he struggled to maintain since Japan's tsunami and nuclear crisis began.

The dairy farmer's suicide message was left on the wall of one of the man's barns, members of a local farming bureau said. The man also apologized to his family and friends in the note.

Hiroyuki Ebihara, a member of a local chapter of Japan Agricultural Cooperatives, said he knew the farmer personally and tried to check in with him after the March 11 disaster.

On June 11, Ebihara says, members of his group found the farmer's body.

"The situation here is depressing for everyone," says Ebihara. "We are all in the same situation. Our future with daily farming is unclear, especially since we don't know what the compensation will be. We want TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company) or the government to come out with a clear plan for compensation."

The man had fled Japan with his family to the Philippines after the earthquake and tsunami. He returned to the farm after 10 days to care for his cows. The farmer's family remained in the Philippines until this week when they returned for the man's funeral.

He leaves behind a wife and two children, Ebihara says.

The agricultural sector of Soma -- the farmer's region -- has been deeply impacted by the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

full article here

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Monday, February 7, 2011

chicken tractor

Building a chicken tractor. The short and sweet version.

Build a 2" X 4" base that is 12' long X 8' wide.

Cattle panels attach to one side (hammer on U-shaped fasteners) and then bend over and attach to the other side. There are three panels used in this design, each 4' wide.

The extra cattle panel pieces are used to fashion end walls.

One end wall gets an access door. The entire chicken tractor gets covered in poultry mesh and all the connections are fastened with wire.

A tarp is added for sun/rain protection. The nesting box is attached. A rod is added for roosting and feeder and waterer are hung near the door and under the tarp.

Add chickens (these get to regularly wander outside on nice days).

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Thursday, March 4, 2010

deer fencing

The Elma C Lomax Incubator Farm uses a fairly simple method of fencing as the primary way of excluding deer from the farm. Cedar posts are in place at the start of the fence and at major corners. Here you can see the electric line coming from underground. It attaches to the fence through a switch.

The rope itself is made of nylon and it has continuous strands of metal woven into it. Fiberglass rods are used to keep it at the right height. The deer have trouble with it because of deep perception.

Here you can see the fence as it runs the Northeastern boundary of the property.