Category Archives: Videos

An Explanation of Swales As a Design Element

I get a ton of questions on Swales many about things like will it create a marsh?  Well, no, that doesn’t happen because swales spread water rather than concentrate it.

People ask about sealing swales to make ponds?  Well, that would be a pond and a swale is too shallow for that.  The questions keep coming and most seem to be trying to make a swale into something it isn’t, like say, can you raise fish in a swale?  Well, no, because most of the time a swale is dry and doesn’t have water it, so they would all die.

This video is my attempt to give the viewer a greater understanding of what a swale is, how it actually functions and why we use them.

Also to explain that they are not right for every situation.  They are but one design element and should be used only when they fit the land form and over all design strategy.

Note – I keep getting a ton of questions about the video quality going up.  These are shot in 1080 at 60 frames per second on an iPhone 7.  I discovered I can shoot that high and upload that high if I download the videos to my computer before uploading them to Youtube.  It takes longer but the quality seems worth it.  The iPhone 7 will actually shoot 4K video but the file sizes are just stupid and I don’t think Youtube will show anything higher than 1080 anway.

Additionally here is another video that is just a short walk on part of our property from yesterday, 3-9-17.

Duck Chronicles Episode Eight – The New Water System is Effing Great

Today we check in with the baby ducks who are mostly napping after partying all night long.  We discuss their new water buckets and the drinking cups I build them with.  We also discuss why I don’t give them this type of system in their first week even though it is easier for me.

You can find the watering cups I use on Amazon at this Link.

Aquaponics and Aquatics Update for 3-7-17

A quick update on some new developments in the aquaponics system, a new tool called “The Python” and some newly installed beds.  Also we discuss a major expansion of the aquatic system that will take place later this year.

S3- Duck Chronicles – Episode Seven – Answers to Questions and Spinach Heaven

Today we wipe out the remainder of the ducks baby spinach stash, I will have to resupply them soon.  We also answer questions from the audience on things like stocking density, duck breed choices, the purpose of swales and more.

S3 – Episode Five – The Special Little Duck is Still Alive

Well our extra efforts to get the little girl from episode 4 to eat paid off and it was like throwing a light switch. As soon as she ate and then followed up with a drink all was well. Now a day later it is tough to even see which one she is.

We also answer some questions and introduce the babies to arugula greens today. They approve!

Season Three – Episode Four – Little Ducks All Over the Floor

Today we discuss mortality rates, which are generally in the 2-3% range over large numbers of ducklings.  We also discuss the breeds we have and identifying them as ducklings.

Sadly one of our ducklings died yesterday and we have one today that doesn’t look like she is going to make it either.  This is a reality when brooding baby ducks.

S3 – Duck Chronicles – Episode 3 – A New Box of Ducks for Me

In Episode 3 of Season Three we start again at the post office picking up the balance of this week’s shipment of ducklings.  We will have one more round of ducks coming next week.

We then move on to the brooder.  Everyone from shipment one did well despite and over night low in the mid 30s.  It was warm enough inside the “Fortress of Duckatude”.  By 8 AM they were up partying at the feeders and waters and welcoming their new brooder mates by 9AM.

We finish with feeding the adult ducks, walking along the swale and peek at an upcoming meal for our Spring Workshop.

Season Three – Duck Chronicles Episodes One and Two Published

Today March 1st is the launch of Season Three of the Duck Chronicles.  In episode one I pick the new ducks up at the post office, talk about a shortage of Silver Appleyards, more shipments coming and the fact that John Metzer of Metzer Farms Personally Called me to Explain the issues.  That folks is customer service!

In episode two we show you the giant brooder set up this year (AKA The Fortress of Duckatude”, our duck poop water catchers on steroids and deal with a few babies that still managed to get wet.  We take everyone to learn where the warm place is, hang out a bit and wrap it up surrounded by baby ducks.




Redneck Venison Pho and New Aquatic System Drains

Couple videos we did over the weekend.  First is what we call Redneck Pho (pho is pronounced fuh) this version is made with venison and quail.  Most of the time I actually do the broth for about 3-4 hours longer, chill over night in the fridge and remove any hardened fat/tallow from the top.  Then use the broth for Redneck Pho or other things.  But for the sake of this video I condensed it into one process.

Items mentioned in this video Items mentioned in this video are Red Yeti Shears  and the Stock Sock



Next up some modifications I made to out aquatic system on Sunday.  I came up with a simple cheap way to create overflow drains that should be 100% fool proof in never clogging.

NOTE – Concerns about the metal tanks, suggestions to try to make this aquatic system into an aquaponics system or fear mongering about PVC will be ignored and possibly deleted.  Sorry but after three years of explaining it, I am just done.  Some day soon I may do one video addressing these concerns one more time, but for the time being I am just done with nervous nillies and people that worry about non problems.



2 Inch Return Lines Added to the Aquatic System

Just some quick video of a modification we did to the aquatic system (note aquatic, not aquaponic).  We plumbed in 2 inch return lines so we can run the flow much faster and turn the entire system over about once ever 90 minutes, or about 16 times a day.

I also explain why the Duck Chronicles Season Three won’t be starting for a few more weeks.  And there are two more bonus videos.

Here are two more videos of some fish we caught and added to the aquaponics system this week as well.