Many hobby farmers have some animals on the farm. Sometimes animals are friends and allow the family to practice taking care of something. Other times they serve the important purpose of feeding the family or creating a family business. If you are a hobby farmer, you’ve most likely planned for years to make your hobby farm come to life. Choosing the best animals to have on your hobby farm will depend on your needs and space.
Rabbits are adorable and if you have children, they’ll most certainly ask to have rabbits on the farm. It’s not a bad idea because children can handle them well and learn a lot from taking care of an animal.
In contrast, many hobby farmers and homesteaders keep rabbits for meat. They are inexpensive to feed, don’t take up much space, and reproduce often (gestation is one month), which means a steady meat supply.
These majestic creatures are worth having around simply to look at. However, they do need space and upkeep isn’t simple. Horses require two to four acres per horse just for grazing.
They also need shelter from inclement weather. When choosing a horse, you can decide between pasture-raised with a run-in shelter or a stable if one is available. The climate you live in should influence your decision.
Horses can get injured due to their need to run and exercise. The results can be costly and tough to deal with because they’re so large.
Still, if you plan on an eco-friendly farm, you can count on horses as working partners for plowing and other farm jobs.
Go in any grocery store and you’ll see the demand for farm-fresh eggs created by chickens who have been treated humanely. Chickens on a hobby farm are a great business idea.
Meat chickens also work well, too. Just be careful not to get too attached. You may be surprised at the personality chickens can have!
Goats will give you three good reasons to keep them on your farm: meat, dairy, and clear land.
They love to nibble all day long on brush and grasses. They can be used as a meat source and are great dairy producers for making goat cheese and goat milk.
Like horses, they need protection from the elements should they be left out to pasture when the weather turns bad.
These beautiful creatures offer us pollenating services for free. They’re easy to keep and very inexpensive. With a small water source, hive boxes, and of course, knowledge of how to handle them, you are ready to go.
The benefit of bees is of course, lovely, local honey.
In conclusion, the best animals to have on your hobby farm are the ones you will enjoy, can afford to take care of, and will serve a purpose on your farm.