Ted and Doretta Colburn
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01/28/10
Winter Thoughts
Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 1:06 pm








It has been an entire year since we have owned the Bison
Ranch at Beech Hill Farm and what a ride it has been! I am always amazed with
what one year in our lives can bring, for that matter one day, even an hour,
but those meanderings are for another time. As long as we are alive, change is
inevitable and while we have seen change on the farm with the birth of calves
and a growing business, the alteration I am thinking of right now is of a more
personal nature.

A year ago the burly beasts that roam our pastures scarred
me, Doretta, to the extent that if they approached the fence, I carefully
backed off. Ted, however, has had more experience than I having helped his
grandfather with the dairy cows that once grazed on these same fields. As for
me, never having grown up on or near a farm, I’d like to say I have always had
a healthy respect for animals, especially big ones like bison. Okay, to be
honest that healthy respect is just nice lingo for - fear. It is like the time
a friend walked me out across his fields among his cows. There wasn’t even a fence
between us. I was terrified and they were cows! Now, we are talking about
bison, the American Buffalo, the largest land mammal in North America!

As I began noting at the beginning of this blog, it is
astonishing when we can step back and notice our own growth over time. When it
comes to raising and managing our bison herd that growth surprises us, our
family and friends, too.  “Bison,”
they can be heard saying with an upward twist at the end of the word so that it
becomes more of a question than a statement. Eyebrows raised and heads cocked
sideways - “bison?” “Yes, bison,” we reply and today with far more confidence
than a year ago.  The fact that our
bison graze naturally on our pastures and provide an excellent healthy source
of meat gives us cause to feel good about what we are doing, as well.

In addition, we just arranged for new arrivals to come in
early May. Not more bison, but chickens! As we strive continue developing a
healthy, more sustainable farm, these new arrivals will bring much needed
nitrogen back to our pastures, help control parasites and flies, not to mention
the fact that we are looking forward to the abundance of fresh eggs.

But, for now the snow is falling and the arrival of our day
old chicks seems eons away. Nature is dressing our bison in a new blanket of white
and we, having completed our chores for the day are sitting beside the fire
with a cup of steaming cocoa in hand.

Ted & Doretta


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