Gary Bush uses holistic practices for livestock healthAsk Gary Bush about the benefits of raising livestock naturally, and you will get a long list of positive results. At Lampe Farm in Lampe, Mo., Gary uses all natural management practices to keep his animals in good health. Lampe Farm is located on a homestead that was built in 1901; the original house and barn are still standing strong. Today, the historic homestead is home to Gary’s herd of hair sheep, meat and dairy goats, bees, peacocks, and heritage breeds of chickens, turkeys, geese, guineas and ducks – all raised naturally for the good of the animals, and the environment.

Pasture Management
The sheep and goats at Lampe Farm are all run on pasture. They are supplemented with good quality alfalfa hay and a mixed feed ration in the evening. The goats also receive an oatmeal cookie every day – “It keeps them coming and keeps them happy,” said Gary. He uses rotational grazing patterns to keep the animals from creating too much wear and tear on the soil and the grasses. This also helps new grass grow back thicker. The flock is moved to a new pasture on a weekly basis.
Gary’s free ranging poultry follow along behind the flock and help break down the manure, which keeps flies and other insect pests to a minimum. The rotational grazing reduces the threat of parasites almost entirely – Gary said he rarely has to treat animals for worms or other illnesses. The pastures are seeded with a Fast Pasture Mix that Gary purchases from Nixa Hardware.
The fertilizer applications at Lampe Farm are also natural – Gary likes to steer clear of synthetic substances. He simply scoops up the manure from his livestock and spreads it over the pastures.

Raising livestock, especially free ranging poultry, often presents challenges. In the past, Gary has had problems with coyotes going after some of his animals. He solved this problem, he said, by opening up his pastures so that his guard dogs had access to all parts of the property. He also noted that the poultry learned to adapt by simply roosting for the night in taller trees where most predators cannot reach them.
As far as preventing health problems, Gary uses practices like adding apple cider vinegar to his poultry waterers and closely monitoring his herd on a daily basis to keep his stock healthy.

Raising, Producing and Marketing Natural Products
Gary’s primary goal on his farm, other than raising his animals naturally, is to make enough of a profit on his animals that they pay for themselves. He accomplishes this goal by selling farm fresh organic eggs and honey at his flower shop, The Crystal Rose, in Branson West. Gary also sells raw goat milk to customers, and markets his lambs, kids and poultry through Craigslist and at local livestock markets. He likes to leave the lambs and kids with their mothers for as long as possible; this leads to stronger, healthier youngsters that have been raised as nature intended – by mom. Gary also lets his poultry set and hatch their own eggs. Lampe Farm also sports a vegetable garden, a blackberry patch, and numerous types of fruit trees.
Using natural management practices is not just good for the livestock – it’s good for people too. “I like it,” Gary said of his natural farm life. “I don’t need anything fancy – it’s comfortable.” 


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