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JackSprats Mom
Jul. 18, 2011, 11:57 AM
Two seperate questions, firstly I am 'reclaiming' fields not mowed in 5-6 years that have alot of brambles in them, cleared most of it by mowing but now have some stubbon stuff left, what all do you guys spray and how long do I need to keep the horses off it?

Second question, I have an 11 acre farmette, several animal including goats, pig, horses and dogs. I have no guns in my house (am not a huge fan of them) but due to being rural now I'm wondering if I should get one (thinking more along the lines of a downed animal that needs to be euthanized). Should I get one? if so what do you all recommend and why? (don't worry will go through THOROUGH training with it!).

Thanks

Nes
Jul. 18, 2011, 12:01 PM
What has your weather been like?
You could torch the stubborn weeds for a pesticide free method & let the horses out right away.
(Are the goats not going to eat them? Mine are doing an amazing job on our sac. paddock which was all weeds)

I rely on my neighbours for the second one.

GL!

JackSprats Mom
Jul. 18, 2011, 01:13 PM
Its too big an area to torch sadly and my goats aren't allowed in the paddocks as they're not secure enough.

msj
Jul. 18, 2011, 01:16 PM
Brambles or thistles-after mowing over them, I then dig them out down as far as possible. Since I mow at least every 2-3 wks and more often in the wet spring weather, even if I didn't dig them out completely the first time, I usually can get them the 2nd time around. Unfortunately, I'm surrounded by fields that don't get mowed at all so I usually get a few that come up in the early spring.

Guns-I thought the same as you, being in rural environment, probably not a bad idea for safety. I asked my next door neighbor, who was a member of our county Sheriff patrol about a hand gun or rifle. He told me the best protection was a dog!:yes:

First dog was very protective and taught a puppy to be a great watchdog. Good barking. Scared quite a few people and had several servicemen not getting out of their vehicles until I was there! :lol:

Second dog(rottwieller/shepard mix) loved everyone and never barked.:(

Third dog was a big chicken and would hide. :(

Fourth dog, barks excessively and runs at people to scare them but is actually afraid of them but does a good job. :lol:

ReSomething
Jul. 18, 2011, 01:38 PM
I've got a DH who loves to hunt and has an arsenal stashed in a safe that takes up one whole closet. We butchered one of the pigs last month and he used a 9mm handgun to administer the final blow. Would I use it myself if he weren't around? No. I think I'd try to find an equally outdoorsy/hunter neighbor to help with euth by gunshot. I rarely hunt and don't get any practice on live animals - euth by gunshot is a perfectly good way to do it but I would be second guessing myself the whole time, and God forbid I failed to get my shot placed, I'd beat myself up forever for letting the animal suffer.

Too bad you can't get the goats out there as they are the perfect weed removal method - maybe a moveable electric fence?

LMH
Jul. 18, 2011, 01:57 PM
I use GrazonNext for weeds. I don't know if will address the weeds you have but there is a list on the bottle (and I assume the website) that will tell you what it kills.

For other than pregnant (and lactating?) mares I do not believe there is any down time. I still leave mine off at least 24 hours to be extra safe.

JackSprats Mom
Jul. 18, 2011, 02:04 PM
Even if I could use the goats there are simply some areas that are 30 ft in diameter 12 ft high in brambles, plan to cut all those down but I think I may also need to spray (only have a couple of already fat goats!). There are FAR to many at this stage to hand dig them up :no: its approx 8 acres with another 2-3 up top that need addressing.

Thanks LMH will look into that, hoping my mare is pregnant so I think I will divide the field into two and spray and wait a week before I move them.

Gun is for wildlife only just FYI, I totally agree a dog is far more threatening to a person (and most wildlife) and have 3 already. Just a little concerned as there have been reports of a juvenile cougar around and I know I have packs of coyotes and most of my livestock pen is VERY secure but who knows.d

Nes
Jul. 18, 2011, 02:05 PM
... my goats aren't allowed in the paddocks as they're not secure enough.

:lol: Most areas aren't!

2DogsFarm
Jul. 18, 2011, 02:12 PM
While gunshot is a great way to euthanize you need to know what you are doing or risk causing more injury.

I'm not so sure any routine gun training would include that information either.
Classes tend to apply to safe handling and marksmanship.

Check with your neighbors for someone who has guns and then ask if they know how to place a kill shot.
Not all hunters are familiar with that particular firearms skill.

As for "wildlife only" - it still makes me queasy to have to dispatch any critter my barncat leaves not-quite dead. And my method is by shovel blade. I would hate to cause more suffering in trying to end it.
I know I'd feel the same way if I had a gun in place of the shovel if I was less than expert at using it.

For your weed question: I'm surprised your goats aren't taking care of that.
Otherwise, if weather & local laws permit, burning is a good solution.

Nes
Jul. 18, 2011, 02:20 PM
Even if I could use the goats there are simply some areas that are 30 ft in diameter 12 ft high in brambles, plan to cut all those down but I think I may also need to spray (only have a couple of already fat goats!). There are FAR to many at this stage to hand dig them up :no: its approx 8 acres with another 2-3 up top that need addressing.
...

If it's that much space, maybe re-think the animal control angle?
Do you need it all trimmed down a.s.a.p.?

I'd do a portable electric enclosure for the goats, getting them in on that weediest area.

You could look around too & see if anyone wants to rent some pasture for goats & "borrow" a few to get your weeds down.

Or what about throwing the pigs in there?

JackSprats Mom
Jul. 18, 2011, 03:21 PM
The pig and goats are out of the question, unless I have 5 ft no climb fencing thats staked to the ground they can and WILL get through it (ask anyone thats had goats). Electric fencing is no issue for them, tried the netting and they jump it, tried the tape and they wiggle through it- trust me!

There is no rush on this, just want a weedkiller thats safe for the horses after a few days.

As for the gun issue, while its far from ideal to have to use it to dispatch an animal with it (and personally I am fairly anti guns, yes a whole other debate) it came up for discussion for some thought, hence posting here. As for being able to do and do correctly I have a degree in Zoology and am a certified euthansia tech which adds some knowledge to what to do.

Again, the gun isn't for sure, just throwing idea's around in my head. And again I would get thorough training in this area, I have a full respect for guns.

Tom King
Jul. 18, 2011, 06:09 PM
Temporary fence around it, and spray with Arsenal early this fall.

Thompson-Contender .270, no scope:
http://www.ableammo.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=87160 It's a break action (barrel folds open to insert one bullet), single shot. You don't need, and are better off without, a scope for your use.

and a single shot .410 shotgun:
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=242319105 not necessarily this particular one. I still use a Stevens Youth gun I've had since I was 9 years old.


Both guns work the same way. Break it open, insert a bullet/shell, pull the hammer back until it locks when it's shouldered and on target, the trigger makes it shoot. Break action single shots are very reliable, probably ranked as safest to operate, and easy to clean.

LMH
Jul. 18, 2011, 07:33 PM
http://www.dowagro.com/range/products/grazonnext.htm

tle
Jul. 20, 2011, 10:29 AM
you're talking about 2 different skill sets when you say the gun would be used for euth of farm animals... vs wildlife control. after having dispatched 2 raccoons with a single shot break barrel, even being able to get point blank and feeling like I do place the shot correctly, I feel better if i can have a 2nd shot quickly. Unless you're using a larger caliber, having only 1 shot means that you really HAVE to have reliable skills so you kill in that 1 shot. Not that you shouldn't have that skill regardless, but I guess for me it's more insurance that not only do I have the skill, I have the 2nd bullet as a backup... which is quicker is better.

I haven't had to euth a large animal, but would probably get XH's .45 handgun to do that. I know a deer-size critter can be taken down with my .3030 rifle and I love that gun so that's what I use for wildlife control. it's a bit much for close range small animals though (if I had tried to use it on the trapped coons at point blank, it would have worked... it probably also would have destroyed the trap!). I have a .17ga single shot break barrel pellet rifle that works really well for those situations.

Whatever you decide to get, see if you can buy it from somewhere that will not only instruct you on how to use it but has a range that you can try it before you buy it. Last thing you want is to spend money on a gun that will do the trick, but is too big for you. I fired XH's .12ga shotgun once and then promptly gave it back. I *can* shoot it... but it really is too big for me to feel comfortable and you definitely need to feel comfortable with a gun to be safest.

tasia
Jul. 20, 2011, 11:14 AM
I use GrazonNext for weeds. I don't know if will address the weeds you have but there is a list on the bottle (and I assume the website) that will tell you what it kills.

For other than pregnant (and lactating?) mares I do not believe there is any down time. I still leave mine off at least 24 hours to be extra safe.

I second GrazonNext.

Tom King
Jul. 20, 2011, 04:04 PM
Any time I'm shooting something with a break-action gun, I hold a couple of shells/bullets in my left hand-usually a possum near the hen house with the .410.

I would only consider it much of a disadvantage with multiple targets, or needing to reload while running-not a situation you want to be in-happened to a friend of mine who was startled by a Grizzly to the point where he spun and knocked the rifle out of his hands on a tree. He unloaded a .44 magnum at the Grizzly as he was running away, and was running down the mountain reloading the .44.

Usually, if it doesn't require the .410, I'll take the AR-15 which is an easy to shoot, accurate, multi-shot gun, but not one I'd recommend for many first timers.

JackSprats Mom
Jul. 21, 2011, 01:47 PM
Thanks guys for some great info...looking into the Grazon now!

Still discussing the gun situtation so much food for thought!