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For the sake of discussion let’s say you want to buy a piece of land for a small farm that could double as a bug out location.

This would be a weekend getaway for you and your family. A place off the beaten path where you and your family can go to relax. And also a place where you and your family can stockpile survival gear for a long term SHTF situation.

If you were going to buy such a place what qualities would you look for? In this article I hope to talk about some of the stuff someone interested in buying a bug out location may look for. Keep in mind these are suggestions and food for thought, and not necessarily requirements.

Location

Off the beaten path, but close enough to town to makes trips convenient. A survivalist dream setup would be hours of off-roading to reach the Bug Out Location. The reality of the situation is that if a 4×4 truck has difficulty reaching the Bug Out Location, what about pulling a trailer loaded with building materials, heavy equipment to put in a septic system, tractors,,, and other heavy loads?

At least 75 – 100 miles from the nearest possible nuclear target.

Not down-steam from a dam.

Not in a floodplain.

Reasonable growing season for raising crops. Another survivalist dream Bug Out Location would be to live in the arctic circle with a cabin, and thousands of acres to hunt, fish and trap on. But living in the arctic circle does provide very much of a growing season for fruits and veggies.

At least 100 miles from the coast. You would not want your Bug Out Location wiped out by a hurricane now would you? During Hurricane Ike the storm surge reached around 20 miles inland.

Topography

Somewhat flat land for growing crops and having livestock.

Near water source such as lake, creek, river, pond,,,,.

Access to timber for firewood and building projects.

Fertile soil for planting fruit trees, crops and grass for livestock to graze on.

Look for land that borders national forest land, creeks, streams, lakes,,, other natural boundaries. Boundaries prevent others from building next to you, and adds a security buffer.
How much land is enough

A lot of survivalist ask how much land they should buy for a Bug Out Location. The main answer is how much land can you afford to buy, and how much can you afford to pay taxes on? For most people the limiting factor is money.

Do you plan on living on the land full time? Or is this going to be a weekend getaway location?

If you live on the land do you plan on having large livestock, such as cattle and horses? What about smaller livestock such as sheep, goats and chickens?

For people who plan on using the land for a weekend getaway just a few acres should do.

For people who plan on living on the land, as much as they can afford to buy.

With planning, composting and square foot gardening it is possible for a family to grow a lot of food on just 1/4 acre, or even less. It is not how much land you have, but “how” that land is used.

State / County Seized property

One place to start looking for Bug Out Location land is at the county tax office. How do you think timber companies got a lot of their land? It was not by paying fair market value to the owners.

Time for a little history lesson.

In the late 1800s as explorers headed west along the gulf coast, stories started making their way back to the east coast about timber. Massive timber like nobody had ever seen before. The timber that drew companies west was the long leaf pine.

The long leaf pine can grow to 100 – 150 feet tall and 4 feet wide. It is estimated that 90 million acres was once occupied by long leaf pines. That was until timber companies started clear cutting. Greed drove deforestation that built this nation.

In the wake of the clear cutting and deforestation communities sprung up. Communities with stores, churches, schools and homes.

When the timber was gone the people moved on.

The land was forgotten, taxes were not paid, the county seized the land, the timber companies bought the land at cut throat prices.

While the timber companies have bought most of the land, there are still parcels out there. It might take awhile, and a lot of looking, but there is still land out there to be had.

Going from bare land to a workable farm

Depending on the amount of free time you have, number of able-bodied workers, budget, accessibility,,,, expect to spend around a year going from bare land to something that is somewhat workable.

If there is timber on the land, sometimes loggers will cut the timber and then pay you a percentage of the money from the wood. The problem is not too many loggers want to mess with small plots of land. if you have 2, 3 or 4 acres it might be difficult to find a logger that will make enough money to even bother.


After the timber has been cut then there are the stumps to deal with. Do not think you are just going to burn the stumps out either. If you want to burn the sumps out you are talking about building a ragging fire on top of each stump.

The easy way to get rid of stump is to have them ground down. Stump grinding is the route I took on my land. The stump grinder was averaging around 1 – 2 minutes for larger stumps, with small ones taking just a few seconds.


This goes back to access. If a 4×4 truck can barely make it to the Bug Out Location, how is heavy equipment supposed to get there?

For those of you who wish to go manual labor on everything, good luck with that. Settlers of the early American frontier were made from a different stock than men and women today.

After part of the land has been cleared, then comes the water well, buildings, fences, orchard, chicken yard, barn,,,, everything a family would need to survive a long term SHTF situation.

Did I miss anything?

If so post your comments below.
 

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I just might be crazy
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Topography

Near water source such as lake, creek, river, pond,,,,.
Kev - I agree with everything you said but want to make one point on something I've been thinking about lately. I agree about being near a water "source" but be aware that typical water sources like known lakes, rivers, etc... will attract all the wondering people. Choose a water source that isn't well known or won't attract attention during SHTF. This isn't easy to do but in a perfect world it's something to consider.

Good information, Kev.
 

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Homes tended be be, shall we say, more modest in those days. People lived in 200 square foot soddies not 5000 square foot palaces... Put your dog in a soddie and the ASPCA will come after you... Look at the home Lincoln was born to...
 

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For the sake of discussion let’s say you want to buy a piece of land for a small farm that could double as a bug out location.

This would be a weekend getaway for you and your family. A place off the beaten path where you and your family can go to relax. And also a place where you and your family can stockpile survival gear for a long term SHTF situation.

If you were going to buy such a place what qualities would you look for? In this article I hope to talk about some of the stuff someone interested in buying a bug out location may look for. Keep in mind these are suggestions and food for thought, and not necessarily requirements.

Location

Off the beaten path, but close enough to town to makes trips convenient. A survivalist dream setup would be hours of off-roading to reach the Bug Out Location. The reality of the situation is that if a 4×4 truck has difficulty reaching the Bug Out Location, what about pulling a trailer loaded with building materials, heavy equipment to put in a septic system, tractors,,, and other heavy loads?

At least 75 – 100 miles from the nearest possible nuclear target.

Not down-steam from a dam.

Not in a floodplain.

Reasonable growing season for raising crops. Another survivalist dream Bug Out Location would be to live in the arctic circle with a cabin, and thousands of acres to hunt, fish and trap on. But living in the arctic circle does provide very much of a growing season for fruits and veggies.

At least 100 miles from the coast. You would not want your Bug Out Location wiped out by a hurricane now would you? During Hurricane Ike the storm surge reached around 20 miles inland.

Topography

Somewhat flat land for growing crops and having livestock.

Near water source such as lake, creek, river, pond,,,,. Any open surface water with enough water for fish will be accessed by the public at times. No matter how much surface water is available a house well, garden irrigation well, and if there are to be commercial crops grown, a large irrigation well for that acreage.

Access to timber for firewood and building projects. Enough additional land to start a coppicing wood lot of at least 10 acres for 10 cords of wood per year.

Fertile soil for planting fruit trees, crops and grass for livestock to graze on. Preferably also irrigated. Need space to grow hay and COB for livestock.

Look for land that borders national forest land, creeks, streams, lakes,,, other natural boundaries. Boundaries prevent others from building next to you, and adds a security buffer. Create your own living barrier fence along any natural barrier, allowing space for any governmentrequired public access.

How much land is enough

A lot of survivalist ask how much land they should buy for a Bug Out Location. The main answer is how much land can you afford to buy, and how much can you afford to pay taxes on? For most people the limiting factor is money.

Do you plan on living on the land full time? Or is this going to be a weekend getaway location?

If you live on the land do you plan on having large livestock, such as cattle and horses? What about smaller livestock such as sheep, goats and chickens?

For people who plan on using the land for a weekend getaway just a few acres should do. 6 acres minimum for one person, plus 2 acres for each additional person.

For people who plan on living on the land, as much as they can afford to buy. If the land is to be a working farm, at least 160 acres.

With planning, composting and square foot gardening it is possible for a family to grow a lot of food on just 1/4 acre, or even less. It is not how much land you have, but “how” that land is used.

State / County Seized property

One place to start looking for Bug Out Location land is at the county tax office. How do you think timber companies got a lot of their land? It was not by paying fair market value to the owners.

Time for a little history lesson.

In the late 1800s as explorers headed west along the gulf coast, stories started making their way back to the east coast about timber. Massive timber like nobody had ever seen before. The timber that drew companies west was the long leaf pine.

The long leaf pine can grow to 100 – 150 feet tall and 4 feet wide. It is estimated that 90 million acres was once occupied by long leaf pines. That was until timber companies started clear cutting. Greed drove deforestation that built this nation.

In the wake of the clear cutting and deforestation communities sprung up. Communities with stores, churches, schools and homes.

When the timber was gone the people moved on.

The land was forgotten, taxes were not paid, the county seized the land, the timber companies bought the land at cut throat prices.

While the timber companies have bought most of the land, there are still parcels out there. It might take awhile, and a lot of looking, but there is still land out there to be had.

Going from bare land to a workable farm

Depending on the amount of free time you have, number of able-bodied workers, budget, accessibility,,,, expect to spend around a year going from bare land to something that is somewhat workable.

If there is timber on the land, sometimes loggers will cut the timber and then pay you a percentage of the money from the wood. The problem is not too many loggers want to mess with small plots of land. if you have 2, 3 or 4 acres it might be difficult to find a logger that will make enough money to even bother.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HlBaZDN_u5k

An alternative is to harvest any special trees with fine lumber value (Black walnut, hickory, apple, maple, etc.) and sell the remaining trees to a firewood processor with the understanding they must take it all, and mulch the small stuff and give that to you plus a small percentage of the best firewood.

After the timber has been cut then there are the stumps to deal with. Do not think you are just going to burn the stumps out either. If you want to burn the sumps out you are talking about building a ragging fire on top of each stump.

The easy way to get rid of stump is to have them ground down. Stump grinding is the route I took on my land. The stump grinder was averaging around 1 – 2 minutes for larger stumps, with small ones taking just a few seconds. Dig around the stumps so they can be ground down at least 4" below the ground surface (6" is better). Best is to rent or hire a D4 to D7 crawler dozer (depending on the sizes of the stumps, and dig the stumps out and then fill in the holes, otherwise thee will be holes in the ground in a few years when the stumps and roots rot away.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_G7f_OvXSpQ

This goes back to access. If a 4×4 truck can barely make it to the Bug Out Location, how is heavy equipment supposed to get there?

For those of you who wish to go manual labor on everything, good luck with that. Settlers of the early American frontier were made from a different stock than men and women today.

After part of the land has been cleared, then comes the water well, buildings, fences, orchard, chicken yard, barn,,,, everything a family would need to survive a long term SHTF situation.

Did I miss anything? Oversize high efficiency septic system, gray water system, power house, vineyard, berry patches, greenhouses, outdoor rough food processing station, butchering station, food processing kitchen, cold storage room, root cellar, shelter, ice house with ice block molding station, kennel & runs, crop storage, large multiple water cisterns, large multiple fuel tanks, biodiesel processing shed and acreage to grow oil seed crops.

If so post your comments below.
All I can think of off the top of my head.

Just my opinion.
 

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this post really got my attention, and even got me to join here.. I was just about to cash in my 403B pension stock fund while the stock market is Up --it had lost 1/2 its value in 2008-2009, and is now back to about whole again, so I figured to get out while the gettins good and buy a condo near me with it and rent it out for a nice little cash flow,,

but Kevs post got me goin ,, I will be reading it and re reading it , absorbing.

I could use the same money instead to buy a bunch of land less than 1/2 tank of gas ( say 150 miles, ) north of here. Figure , put up a dwelling or find one with an old house (they are there, I used to camp up there) and rent that out for a bit of income (I live on SOc Sec , unwilling to touch my pension fund as it had eroded so bad) with the understanding that I would be moving in there myself with them if th SHTF

here is the problem,,, I am a volunteer Fire Fighter,, , too old to crawl into the Dragons Den anymore,, sO I direct traffic at accident scenes.. several times a week...and I know what one car rolled over can do to traffic flow. and how people act if they are about to miss their plane taking off ...
.So... I have serious doubts,--- more than serious doubts ---that most Survivalists could get To their BOL if the SHTF....and I do not want to have all my eggs in a basket with 150 miles of angry desperate people,, disabled cars and trucks between me and my eggs

I think most Preppers are extremely unrealistic about having a bug out location more than walking distance from their home into a swamp, over the ridge.. or into dense cover --- just as a temporary hidey hole when a mob too numerous to shoot, or too numerous to bury if yu did,, comes passing by your regular abode .
 

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All I can think of off the top of my head.

Just my opinion.
I know questioning you isn't going to be popular, but 6acres for 1 person? 2 acres for each addittional? And 160 acres for a working farm? What do you consider a working farm. in your area all you have to do is drive east and you can find a lot of small ranches that could easily sustain a family that don't fall in your parameters. Look around fallon an fernley for starters. Winnemucca an lovelock, or yerington/smith valley.
 

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"Look for land that borders national forest land, creeks, streams, lakes,,, other natural boundaries. Boundaries prevent others from building next to you, and adds a security buffer."

at this I would say um... maybe...

MRS's cousin bought 160 acres in the bluff country, along the Mississippi river in SE MN... they have state land on 3 sides... they hate that fact... during mushroom ( Morel ), small game & deer season, they get their property over run by all those taking advantage of the "donation" camping ( means free ) over a ways on the state land, who don't respect the no trespassing / private property, signs that they had to post every 50 ft ( regulations ) on the fence between their property & the state land... they are constantly kicking people off their deer hunting stands during deer season, as well as during Turkey hunting... a good portion of these "squatters" don't claim to speak English, when confronted, & have no respect for poaching laws, they often find gut piles long before season, as well as lights in the woods after dark ( shining )...

I think if you are within an hour or two drive, from any kind of major city, the state or government land is actually a detriment for neighboring property... I'm sure if you are in the mountains, & a long ways from a major city, those results may differ, however using the OP's thoughts of an hour or so from home, cousins experience has not been positive...
 

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How about practical suggestions for surviving in this location, in case SHTF before it's all developed? Like what to start growing quickly, type of structure to build for prep/tool storage... that could, in a pinch double as a one room bunk house...
 

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I know questioning you isn't going to be popular, but 6acres for 1 person? 2 acres for each addittional? And 160 acres for a working farm? What do you consider a working farm. in your area all you have to do is drive east and you can find a lot of small ranches that could easily sustain a family that don't fall in your parameters. Look around fallon an fernley for starters. Winnemucca an lovelock, or yerington/smith valley.
I hope it doesn't bother other people, because it doesn't bother me. My posts are pretty much all only an opinion based on my experience and research, and, as such, are open to interpretation and questioning.

As to the actual elements of the post, it is for as self-sufficient lifestyle, which includes a much higher level of food production, including traditional meats that most Americans prefer to eat on a more or less daily basis. And to minimize cash outlay and maximize income potential.

A working farm, to me, is a farm that produces both enough to feed the family to a high degree, and produce products that bring in enough money for the family to get everything else they require, up to and including college educations for the children, and having an acceptable retirement income when the time comes. Decent vehicles and farm equipment replaced on a reasonable schedule, improvements and maintenance for everything.

It is a business that provides everything a family needs long term. For a family of four, with one permanent hired hand and one or two temporary hands during the peak farming seasons, you are looking at something in the neighborhood of $250k gross and $100,000 net per year averaged over several years, for the family to do those things.

Unless the ground is perfect, with perfect weather conditions, a high value crops, and good market conditions when the crops come in, clearing $100k on less than 160 acres is very iffy. If one looks at the historical record of homesteading when the country was being opened up, production farms were usually 160 acres. And many of them were never able to prove up, and many more lost their farms when hard times hit.

Based on experience and research for pasture raised stock a minimum of 6.0 acres for 1 person is 1 milk cow (2.50 acres), 1 beef steer (2.00 acres), 1 hog (.25 acre), 40 chickens (.10 acre), garden (.20 acre), oils/sugar (.17 acre), orchard (.46 acre), yard/buildings (.32 acre) which is more than 1 person needs when it comes to the orchard and meat animals but you can't grow a half an animal and most fruits and nuts need two trees for reliable pollination. And that is with good ground, good weather, plenty of irrigation, and a minimum of purchased feed.

The 2 acres per person is a little high for the next two or three people, but once past 4 people it is pretty close, I think, when you include the self-sufficiency elements like the biodiesel, cooking oil, sugar, grains, and animal feed for the animals, increased fallow land for the increased area under cultivation, expansion and addition of various land use needs.

Hope this explains my numbers. If you have further questions, feel free to ask.

Still just my opinion.
 

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wow, Thanks Jerry, reality smacked me in the face just now..
, I cannot say it was pleasant but it is apparently reality,, and I am perplexed, discouraged, and at a loss as to how to deal with it.....
So , I guess I will continue to do as I have ---plan and act as best I can to be prepared for as long a period of tribulation as I can...
in the hopes chaos will not exist longer than that.. and continue to do all I can as a citizen to prevent chaos from occurring,, knowing that my best possible preps could only pan out to be a stop gap...
 

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this post really got my attention, and even got me to join here.. I was just about to cash in my 403B pension stock fund while the stock market is Up --it had lost 1/2 its value in 2008-2009, and is now back to about whole again, so I figured to get out while the gettins good and buy a condo near me with it and rent it out for a nice little cash flow,,

but Kevs post got me goin ,, I will be reading it and re reading it , absorbing.

I could use the same money instead to buy a bunch of land less than 1/2 tank of gas ( say 150 miles, ) north of here. Figure , put up a dwelling or find one with an old house (they are there, I used to camp up there) and rent that out for a bit of income (I live on SOc Sec , unwilling to touch my pension fund as it had eroded so bad) with the understanding that I would be moving in there myself with them if th SHTF

here is the problem,,, I am a volunteer Fire Fighter,, , too old to crawl into the Dragons Den anymore,, sO I direct traffic at accident scenes.. several times a week...and I know what one car rolled over can do to traffic flow. and how people act if they are about to miss their plane taking off ...
.So... I have serious doubts,--- more than serious doubts ---that most Survivalists could get To their BOL if the SHTF....and I do not want to have all my eggs in a basket with 150 miles of angry desperate people,, disabled cars and trucks between me and my eggs

I think most Preppers are extremely unrealistic about having a bug out location more than walking distance from their home into a swamp, over the ridge.. or into dense cover --- just as a temporary hidey hole when a mob too numerous to shoot, or too numerous to bury if yu did,, comes passing by your regular abode
.

While I am a "bug iner" I also travel for work.

I am away from my homestead-in-progress at the moment, with my folding bike in the back of my truck.

The plan is "leave early and often" but if necessary, I have NVG's and can take it in 3-5 second rushes...

I have a different prespective of "bug out" locations... They SHOULD be in a different region. Reason being that most disasters are regional.

Hurricane, chemical spill, civil unrest, etc...

I believe your primary home (if not a "bug iner") should be prepped for 30 days (+travel supplies) because:
1. Most issues will be resolved in under 30 days
2. Before 30 days, if it's that bad...any urban area will be unsustainable and it's time to leave.*

*exception being if it's a "long slow slide" such that preps must be used (food for example if there's only 50% avalable, or affordable)
 

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Based on experience and research for pasture raised stock a minimum of 6.0 acres for 1 person is 1 milk cow (2.50 acres), 1 beef steer (2.00 acres), 1 hog (.25 acre), 40 chickens (.10 acre), garden (.20 acre), oils/sugar (.17 acre), orchard (.46 acre), yard/buildings (.32 acre) which is more than 1 person needs when it comes to the orchard and meat animals but you can't grow a half an animal and most fruits and nuts need two trees for reliable pollination. And that is with good ground, good weather, plenty of irrigation, and a minimum of purchased feed.

The 2 acres per person is a little high for the next two or three people, but once past 4 people it is pretty close, I think, when you include the self-sufficiency elements like the biodiesel, cooking oil, sugar, grains, and animal feed for the animals, increased fallow land for the increased area under cultivation, expansion and addition of various land use needs.

Hope this explains my numbers. If you have further questions, feel free to ask.

Still just acreage my opinion.
As scary as Jerrys figures are, For the type of livestock he is discussing I would say that they on the low side for any long term event. In order to keep producing meat/dairy for your family you need to be able to breed your animals for the future (and indeed for dairy you will need to breed to keep the milk flowing). With one hog, one dairy cow etc. the benefits will soon run out. This means more animals and more land. I understand that a dairy cow will produce much much more that one family can consume but that excess may not be easily transferred into a replacement animal (i.e. sell the milk and cheese and save the money to buy a new animal, but trade is unlikely to be organised enough to count on this). May I suggest that as nice as beef is, it is not really a benefit to the smallholder/homesteader. With Chicken, rabbit, sheep, goats, fish etc. there are many meats to provide enough variety to prevent boredom but take up less resources and because they are smaller less needs to be stored come slaughter time. Goats milk also has many advantages over cows milk, for example, it can be fed to most young livestock if something happens to its mother to ensure survival, not something many animals can do with cows milk. For the 5 acres Jerry suggests for livestock, 4.5 are for 2 cattle. The very same land could sustain breeding populations of all the animals I suggested, and also some more variety of small animals should you wish. May I also suggest that they may be easier for the average survivalist to deal with as opposed to an enormous cow, after all an experienced farmer wouldn't be asking here about land requirements for animals he would want.
 

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I think one thing that doesn't get mentioned enough is to make sure that there are no restrictions or covenants and that the land you are purchasing has clear water, timber, and mineral rights that pass to the purchaser.

During my search for land I found that almost all the best properties had some kind of restriction (can't have livestock, or can't live in a camper or mobile home, or dwellings must be a minimum size). I soon realized putting the "No Covenants or Restrictions" at the top of my list filtered out most properties and made my search more efficient.

Combining this requirement with my other requirements (within budget, southern exposure, year-round access, feasible well and septic site) and I found that I would either have to search for a long time (possibly years) or I would have to take something less than perfect.

I spent $67k on my 20 acres and it is not perfect - there is no surface water. But it does have a well, and there are creeks nearby.
 

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wow, Thanks Jerry, reality smacked me in the face just now..
, I cannot say it was pleasant but it is apparently reality,, and I am perplexed, discouraged, and at a loss as to how to deal with it.....
So , I guess I will continue to do as I have ---plan and act as best I can to be prepared for as long a period of tribulation as I can...
in the hopes chaos will not exist longer than that.. and continue to do all I can as a citizen to prevent chaos from occurring,, knowing that my best possible preps could only pan out to be a stop gap...
Don't be too discouraged. Sounds to me like you are doing what needs to be done within your means. No one can be prepared for everything. Trying to do so is counterproductive for most people, as it dilutes the efforts to prepare for things that are likely and can be prepared for within reason.

As scary as Jerrys figures are, For the type of livestock he is discussing I would say that they on the low side for any long term event. In order to keep producing meat/dairy for your family you need to be able to breed your animals for the future (and indeed for dairy you will need to breed to keep the milk flowing). With one hog, one dairy cow etc. the benefits will soon run out. This means more animals and more land. I understand that a dairy cow will produce much much more that one family can consume but that excess may not be easily transferred into a replacement animal (i.e. sell the milk and cheese and save the money to buy a new animal, but trade is unlikely to be organised enough to count on this). May I suggest that as nice as beef is, it is not really a benefit to the smallholder/homesteader. With Chicken, rabbit, sheep, goats, fish etc. there are many meats to provide enough variety to prevent boredom but take up less resources and because they are smaller less needs to be stored come slaughter time. Goats milk also has many advantages over cows milk, for example, it can be fed to most young livestock if something happens to its mother to ensure survival, not something many animals can do with cows milk. For the 5 acres Jerry suggests for livestock, 4.5 are for 2 cattle. The very same land could sustain breeding populations of all the animals I suggested, and also some more variety of small animals should you wish. May I also suggest that they may be easier for the average survivalist to deal with as opposed to an enormous cow, after all an experienced farmer wouldn't be asking here about land requirements for animals he would want.
All true and I agree up to a point. One thing is that most Americans will not be satisfied with the animals listed long term. There will be a call for the big five (beef, pork, chicken, eggs, & dairy in quantity) that can't be filled with small stock except in very large operations.

Another thing is that even in the PAW there will be other like-minded people with stock that can be bred to one's own animals to maintain genetic diversity.

Also is the probability that with a working farm, not just a small family hobby operation, there will be means and methods in place to make sure of genetic diversity, anyway.

Just my opinion.
 

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wow, Thanks Jerry, reality smacked me in the face just now..
, I cannot say it was pleasant but it is apparently reality,, and I am perplexed, discouraged, and at a loss as to how to deal with it.....
So , I guess I will continue to do as I have ---plan and act as best I can to be prepared for as long a period of tribulation as I can...
in the hopes chaos will not exist longer than that.. and continue to do all I can as a citizen to prevent chaos from occurring,, knowing that my best possible preps could only pan out to be a stop gap...
Don't be too discouraged. Sounds to me like you are doing what needs to be done within your means. No one can be prepared for everything. Trying to do so is counterproductive for most people, as it dilutes the efforts to prepare for things that are likely and can be prepared for within reason.

As scary as Jerrys figures are, For the type of livestock he is discussing I would say that they on the low side for any long term event. In order to keep producing meat/dairy for your family you need to be able to breed your animals for the future (and indeed for dairy you will need to breed to keep the milk flowing). With one hog, one dairy cow etc. the benefits will soon run out. This means more animals and more land. I understand that a dairy cow will produce much much more that one family can consume but that excess may not be easily transferred into a replacement animal (i.e. sell the milk and cheese and save the money to buy a new animal, but trade is unlikely to be organised enough to count on this). May I suggest that as nice as beef is, it is not really a benefit to the smallholder/homesteader. With Chicken, rabbit, sheep, goats, fish etc. there are many meats to provide enough variety to prevent boredom but take up less resources and because they are smaller less needs to be stored come slaughter time. Goats milk also has many advantages over cows milk, for example, it can be fed to most young livestock if something happens to its mother to ensure survival, not something many animals can do with cows milk. For the 5 acres Jerry suggests for livestock, 4.5 are for 2 cattle. The very same land could sustain breeding populations of all the animals I suggested, and also some more variety of small animals should you wish. May I also suggest that they may be easier for the average survivalist to deal with as opposed to an enormous cow, after all an experienced farmer wouldn't be asking here about land requirements for animals he would want.
All true and I agree up to a point. One thing is that most Americans will not be satisfied with the animals listed long term. There will be a call for the big five (beef, pork, chicken, eggs, & dairy in quantity) that can't be filled with small stock except in very large operations.

Another thing is that even in the PAW there will be other like-minded people with stock that can be bred to one's own animals to maintain genetic diversity.

Also is the probability that with a working farm, not just a small family hobby operation, there will be means and methods in place to make sure of genetic diversity, anyway.

Just my opinion.
 

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Especially if there is snow I personally would build aqua ponic and green houses .
Use the foliage in the ares for mulch and warming the double glazed garden sheds .
place the house and natural lighting so during the winter months you have windows tha face south bringing light and heat into the house. Use solar panels was well for passive power and wind mills to supplement winter time power needs .
Areas That at are designated mulch beds have tubing through out odor preheating water for the house.
Pipe insulation through out exterior with a driven pump for cycling the heat.
If freezing is a concern a close circuit with heat exchangers would safely transfer the coolant used for heating to water you use in the house. Properly done cannot mix.
Solar water (coolant) on the roof as well ,would be another contribution. .
I would engineer the house with glass facing the south nothing obstructing it , I notice you've got some tall trees , good luck with that .
The barn for the animals can use solar and mulch heat as well .
If your barn can be wide enough it would be practical to have a walker for the horses and cows to keep them healthy.
Bringing animals there is going to attract all kinds of attention predators.
I would set up distance surveillance as far as your budget can allow that way you know well in advance some one 2or 4 legged are on the approach.
Harbor freight has a unit good receivers for 300 feet ,but I am sure that there are better ones available .
Separate units for different location , supplement their power with smaller panels .
Rig them not to be seen .
If I had a well access ,I would have it in the house not out side. Even if it needs it's own room, all the better.
I have books on solar from the 70s with some great ideas. puroosing through them gives one great ideas .
If you build with the considerations in mind, then at a later date putting them in will work best, if you are not ready to do solar right away.
A friend of mine after the 6.2 earth quake in southern calif replaced his slab in the garage and installed the tubing during the pour for solar heating .
Then installed the water heating solar panels on his roof, and now has a heated floor when he wants it especially during the winter.
One could do their drive way as well having its own panel or being able to switch one panel out for that purpose of keeping the snow off the drive way. you may not see tha advantages now but they are great .
One mistake I have seen all to often is builder ignoring the slope of the roof and icy conditions during the winter ,Relying on gutters is foolish.
Good luck .
 
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