Rujzin Acres is a preservation farm dedicated to improving and promoting heritage breeds that are at risk of becoming lost. There are hundreds of older breeds in America that fell out of favor due to commercial farming or different goals on the homestead. These breeds aren't bad or inferior and by neglecting them we not only lose precious genetic diversity but also part of our history and traits that are more in favor now than they were a decade ago.
After many years and many breeds, we have focused on a single breed of each respective animal that has qualities that we feel are necessary not only for our weather, but our personal needs. This focus allows us to not only celebrate the qualities of each breed but gives us the time and space needed to help improve them. If you would rather embrace your flocks for their unique homesteading qualities then consider an assortment.
I strongly encourage you to look at each animal we raise in depth, even if it is not something you think would benefit you. Many of the animals that are fading away are vanishing because of stereotypes: the aggressive goose, the greasy duck, the dumb sheep. Because of these stereotypes we risk losing out on the many real benefits these animals provide.
Our Pilgrim geese are a quiet, friendly breed that grazes our orchard and fattens on weeds and windfallen fruit. They provide down for pillows, feathers and eggs for crafts, delicious self-basting meat, fat for roasting potatoes, and in grazing down the orchard it keeps us from having to mow while also reducing insect infestations by eating the fallen fruit before worms have a chance to burrow into the ground and winter over for the next year. We have never been bitten by one of our Pilgrims (that includes pulling eggs out from under mothers) and enjoy watching them out in the field. If you want a pet or food that grows on very little grain, Pilgrims are an excellent choice.
The Welsh Harlequin ducks raised have one of the most beautiful color patterns I have seen in barnyard birds. The soft fawn leopard spotting is striking and the drakes look like they have sat down in a snowdrift. They are an active, streamlined breed that lays just as well, if not better (and larger), than most breeds of chickens. Since they are more of a laying duck, they do not pack on the fat found in store birds, giving you a wonderful lean meat. They will happily dabble in puddles for mosquito larvae, chase down grasshoppers, and lunge for Japanese beetles.
Out of the hundreds of chicken breeds clamoring for attention, the Cubalayas are the ones that genuinely won us over. Their exotic, graceful carriage is a joy to see in the yard. They are exceptional foragers (including snatching up small mice if they can catch them), protective parents, cautious and bold out in the yard. Hens will leap on a hawk to save a chick, roosters make great sentries to keep a watchful eye on the flocks. They lay a smaller egg, and they have a smaller build - but what they lack in size and numbers they make up for by making up more of their diet in what they hunt down.
The backbone of any small homestead was their dairy cow. She provided milk, butter, cheese, ice cream, roasts, and burgers. Enter the St Croix sheep. Forget everything you know about sheep: they can't really compare to the St Croix. The St Croix breeds out of season, milks, sheds like a bison, and is smart and strong enough to be taught how to pull small loads around the farm. They eat weeds like a goat without climbing, will devour poison ivy without the musk of a buck, and will fatten on poor pastures. They have become the perfect answer to our problem of not having the space or need for a dairy cow, nor the set up or taste for a goat.
Hatching eggs are usually available for sale starting at the end of January and early February. Heating packs can be provided in cold weather to keep them from freezing. Chicks and ducklings are usually available through spring and summer, while goslings are usually sold out by early summer. Lambs tend to be available twice a year, but sporadically. Yearlings and adults in poultry, waterfowl, and sheep are available on occasion at random times.
This is just a general list of availability and it fluctuates a lot through the year.
In addition to animals, we offer various feather and egg collectibles. These include blown out pysanky and painted eggs; quill pens (in traditional and nibbed calligraphy pens along with gel ink feather pens for regular use), and occasionally painted feathers. Half of the year is spent gathering the supplies needed, such as a hatched egg to turn into a tea candle or molted feathers to use for decorated bookmarks. Usually there is time to finally sit and create over the winter months.
If you are interested in something in particular or have a question then feel free to send an email to: