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WHERE THRIVING GRASSLANDS GROW, SO DOES HOPE
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8.26.21
FEATURED SOIL BUILDERS: CARCASS & CABBAGE
by Taylor Collins
 

Out on our ranch, we understand that predators have an important biological role in the ecosystem. Through their evolutionary behaviors, predators contribute to maintaining balanced numbers of prey species in a system while increasing the overall health of the land. As a predator-friendly ranch, we intentionally welcome these apex species to contribute to our ecosystem and use livestock guardian dogs to defend our vulnerable poultry livestock. 

Our heroes of the pasture raised poultry community are two sisters who were originally named Carnage and Savage. As with all livestock guardian dogs, these girls went through a rebellious youth stage that involved killing 1 chicken a day (for an entire year), frequently wandering off the property for week-long vision quests, and getting arrested/detained by our local sheriff for harassing deer on a neighboring ranch.   

By the time our livestock guardian dogs turned 2 years old, something clicked inside their genetics and they began to recognize and embrace their role as poultry defenders. It was at this time that the dogs officially changed their names to Carcass and Cabbage (our 3-year-old daughter took the lead on that initiative and it quickly stuck) and have become wonderful contributors to our ranch. 

While Carcass and Cabbage typically pull all-nighters patrolling the pastures where our poultry roam, they spend their daytime "off hours" sleeping under the shade of our barn. A true nemesis to any hungry predator, our livestock guardians are friends to all human visitors and melt with any and all affection given to them. Through years of epic battles with skunks, porcupines, great horned owls, and coyotes their gentleness and affection for humans and poultry are astonishing and I can confidently say I have never met two sweeter souls in my life. Because of Carcass and Cabbage, we are able to maintain a 100% pasture raised and free-range poultry program that enriches our land and feeds our community. These dogs are the unsung heroes of our ranch who show up to work every day and tackle life's challenges head-on. Whether dealing with 100+ degree summer days or having porcupine needles pulled from their tongues, Carcass and Cabbage are as loyal as they come. Here's to our lovely livestock guardian dogs.

May your days be filled with belly rubs and rest, and your nights be filled with adventure and epic stories!  We thank you for your service.