Category Archives: Survival

It can be done! 5 Animals we recommend you raising if you’re a novice farmer

While the thought of adding livestock to a traditional backyard can seem daunting, even a beginner can raise several animals. But before you decide which animal(s) you want to raise, ensure that your backyard is spacious enough so your livestock will have room to roam in. Since these animals will be a source of greener food options, the least you can do is give them a clean and healthy environment to live in.

We’ve listed five animals that are relatively easy to raise. Remember to start small before you decide on raising all five animals at once.

  1. Chickens Chickens are a homesteader favorite because they provide eggs and are also great for keeping your backyard bug- and pest-free. Depending on the breed, chickens can lay a lot of eggs. However, it can take at least four to eight months before chickens reach the laying age. They also require enough space to roam around during the day. Give your chickens at least four square feet of living space. If you want to raise chickens for meat, keep in mind that this can be challenging since it’ll take several months before they’re ready. Chickens raised for meat can stink up your backyard, so make sure you’re ready to deal with this. Most hens will lay eggs for three years. Any longer than that and you will need to plan for their eventual retirement. (Related: Feed your backyard chickens for free with garden produce, common weeds.)
  2. Ducks – Muscovy ducks are the perfect breed to raise in a traditional backyard. These ducks don’t quack, so you’ll only hear them make “quiet hissing and pipping noises” unlike other duck breeds. While they don’t require a big pond, Muscovy ducks do require water that has been cleaned regularly. These ducks are a good source of eggs and meat, but they may forage in your garden, so take measures to protect your produce. Ducks are also good for pest control because they eat flies, mosquitoes, and snails. Keep Muscovy ducks in pairs, and clip their wings if you wish to keep their flying in control. Don’t forget to provide them with a roost since ducks need more space than chickens typically require. If you want to let these ducks loose, keep in mind that their droppings can run “loose,” which is good for your garden but not for your porch.
  3. Goats – If you’re interested in raising goats, consider the Nigerian Dwarf goat. This breed is suitable for traditional backyards, and the milk it provides is nutritious. Goat milk can also be used to make delicious cheese, and these animals can help keep your bushes under control. This smaller goat breed only requires at least one-fourth of the space a full-sized dairy goat needs, but give them at least 16 square feet per goat. Keep at least two goats since they need to be in a herd to stay happy. Sturdy fencing and housing will keep the goats warm and dry. Do check with your neighbors and zoning before getting some goats because they are noisy animals.
  4. Quail – Quail is another great option for backyard livestock due to their small size, which gives you many options when it comes to housing. Quails need a minimum of one square foot per bird. When it comes to egg laying, quails can start producing eggs after six weeks. They’re also fully grown after eight weeks. Even though quail eggs are smaller than chicken eggs, the former are creamier. Keep in mind that quails can also be noisy, so only keeping hens might be a better option, especially if you have neighbors that aren’t fond of noisy animals. Quail meat is darker and has a flavor similar to turkey, although you might need a couple before you feel full. When raising quail for meat, a 4:5 hen to rooster is ideal. Quails are low maintenance as long as you give them a high protein feed. Without enough protein, they can resort to cannibalism.
  5. Rabbits – If you’re looking for quieter livestock, get some rabbits. They’re easy to raise, and they require a cage that only measures at least 3×2 feet. But if your space is big enough, consider getting them a bigger cage. Start with three rabbits made up of two does and a buck. Rabbit meat tastes like chicken meat, and it’s mostly white meat and very lean. Do keep in mind that rabbits must be kept cool, and they don’t breed during the hot summer months. Give them shade and some frozen water bottles, fans, and misters to keep them comfortable.

5 things to remember when raising livestock

Once you’ve chosen from the list of suggested livestock above, don’t forget these five tips for raising livestock:

  • Choose your livestock well – Consider the pros and cons before you decide on the kind of animal you want to raise.
  • Think of the end game – Choose the animal based on what you and your family need. Is it eggs, meat, or milk?
  • Expenses – Make sure you have the funds to care for these animals well so your efforts don’t go to waste.
  • Time investment – Livestock require a lot of time and attention, so don’t bother planning if you can’t commit to taking care of the animals properly.
  • Emotional investment – Remember that your chickens or goats are not kept as pets. While you feed and nurture them, livestock are primarily a food source. Don’t get attached, and if you have children, raising livestock is a good way to teach them about natural food sources.

Image: It can be done! 5 Animals we recommend you raising if you’re a novice farmer

You can read more articles about raising livestock and other homesteading tips at Homesteading.news.

Sources include:

ImperfectlyHappyHomesteading.com

MelissaKNorris.com

Growing vegetables in your own yard now confirmed as a criminal offense by Florida courts… INSANITY is now LAW

Image: Growing vegetables in your own yard now confirmed as a criminal offense by Florida courts… INSANITY is now LAW

It’s a sad day in Florida: Property rights for homeowners have taken a huge blow as courts confirm that growing edible plants in your own front yard is, in fact, a crime. Out of all the terrible things a person can do these days, gardening is the last thing you may have suspected would become a punishable offense. To no one’s surprise, Big Government continues to use strong-arm tactics against innocent people looking to engage in some basic self-sufficiency. If they can’t take your guns, they’ll take your garden.

This display of obvious government overreach first began back in 2013, when Hermine Ricketts and her husband Tom Carroll were faced with fines of up to $50 per day — for the crime of growing edible plants like tomatoes and Asian cabbage in their front yard — after city ordinances were changed. While they didn’t face any jail time, the couple had to dig up their prosperous garden. Due to their north-facing backyard that gets little sun, they’ve not been able to resume gardening.

The couple has been fighting against the Village of Miami Shores and their outrageous ordinance ever since — along with help from the Institute of Justice (IJ), a non-profit law firm. IJ lawyer Ari Bargil, contended, “This decision gives local governments tremendous leeway to regulate harmless activities in the name of aesthetics. It gives government the power to prohibit homeowners from growing plants in their front yards simply because they intend to eat them.”

Despite the recent ruling by the 3rd District Court of Appeal, which favored Miami Shores’ absurdity, Ricketts and Carroll are now looking to take their case all the way up to the state of Florida’s Supreme Court.

According to the most recent ruling, Miami Shores has the right to brandish authority over design and landscaping criteria to maintain “property values and the enjoyment of property rights by minimizing and reducing conflicts among various land uses,” as well as for “protecting” the look of the village.

Is a well-maintained vegetable garden really an eyesore that would damage property values?

Richard Sarafan, attorney for the Village of Miami Shores, essentially argued that allowing the couple to keep their front-yard garden would somehow pave the way for total pandemonium. Sarafan complained that the couple’s yard was “filled with pots” that “should have” been placed in the backyard. But yet, had those pots been filled with flowers instead of vegetables — the city would have had no legs to stand on with their arbitrary complaint.

There is no shortage of reasons to object to the 3rd District Court’s ruling, but perhaps the most inane explanation for their decision was the attempt at rationalizing why it’s okay for the government to legislate against edible plants but not ornamental ones. IJ attorney Ari Bargil objected to the court’s claim that “it is rational for government to ban the cultivation of plants to be eaten as part of a meal, as opposed to the cultivation of plants for ornamental reasons,” — and it’s easy to see why. How can the government tell citizens what kinds of plants they can grow?

Government overreach regarding the cultivation of edible plants and other healthy living choices is a growing problem in the United States. Where will we draw the line? Food and health freedom are already under attack — this ruling is proof of that. [Related: Read more stories like this at Tyranny.news.]


Sources for this article include:

MiamiHerald.com

WOGX.com

What Might Civil War Be Like?

The thought of Civil War has been in the minds of many people lately, on both sides of the political and cultural divide. This is not a thing to be wished for, though no one should kid themselves into believing it’s impossible either. Let us take a sober look at what such a conflict might entail.

To begin with, it would not look like the first American Civil War, which was essentially a war between two regions of the country with different economic interests. The divide created two separate countries, both initially contiguous, intact, and relatively homogeneous. The lines of demarcation now are only somewhat regional, and tend to correspond to differences between urban and rural populations, as well as differences of race and class. A second American Civil War would be much more similar to the Spanish Civil War, with the leftists dominating the cities and conservatives controlling the countryside. Conflicts of this nature, with enemies mixed geographically, are a formula for spontaneous mass bloodletting. India-Pakistan during the 1947 partition comes to mind as another modern example. Given an absence of legitimate government and the friction of proximity, ordinary people can be moved to settle grievances by killing one another without the need for governments to egg them on.

Some dimensions of a future civil war would be, I think, largely unprecedented. When lesser countries have imploded in violence in recent times, they have done so with most of the world around them still intact. There were other nations to offer aid, assistance and intervention, welcome or unwelcome. There were places for refugees to go. The collapse of the world’s remaining superpower would take much of the world down with it. A global economic crisis would be inevitable. The withdrawal of American forces from bases across the world to fight at home would also create a power vacuum that others, even under economic strain, would be tempted to exploit. Whichever side gained control of our nuclear arsenal, our status as a nuclear power would probably persuade other nations not to interfere in our conflict militarily, but the collapse of trade alone would produce crippling effects that would be hard to overestimate. Many components for products our manufacturing sector makes are globally sourced. Add to this the breakdown of our transportation system, dependent on oil and transecting one new front line after another. The internet would fail. It is a frail enough now. Financial systems would fail. What happens if the banks find half their assets suddenly in hostile territory? All Federal government functions, including Social Security, would fail, many of them losing their very legitimacy to one side or the other. Food production, heavily dependent on diesel fuel, chemical fertilizers and pesticides, not to mention a steady supply of genetically engineered seeds, would slump alarmingly. In short, most things we depend on are now held together by a network of delicate and complex connections. Without those connections, would you have a job? If so, in what medium of exchange could your employers manage to pay you? What would there be for you to buy? Does your town, your county, or even your state have the ability to marshal its resources into a viable economy? How many people in those entities could deal with anything worse than a weather disaster, in which they count on the fact that help is coming soon?

From an economic perspective, I think it is fair to say that the left would have a bigger problem than the right. Cities cannot feed themselves under any conditions, and what food could be grown on America’s resource-starved farms would be gobbled up by people nearer and dearer to the farmers. Leftists would have to both secure vast territories around their urban strongholds and relearn from scratch the generations-lost art of food production. Liberal enclaves stranded in the hinterland would simply be untenable. We, on the other hand, would be critically short of new Hollywood movies. Without a steady supply of the works of Meryl Streep and Matt Damon, millions of conservatives would instantly drop dead from boredom – that is, according to Meryl Streep.

Up through the middle of the 20th century, cities were major hubs of industry, but liberal preoccupations with environmentalism have driven much of our surviving industry into rural areas. The domination of the South by the sheer scale of Northern industry that happened in the 1860s would not repeat itself in a future war. Both sides would probably have the means to manufacture basic military essentials, but producing sophisticated items like fighter planes would be simply too complex for the remaining economic base. It would be a war of soldiers, not of million-dollar robots. Were the war to stretch into years, the left would likely destroy their own economy with unfettered socialistic policies. This actually happened to the Spanish Republic in the 1930s. I can image their modern counterparts struggling to make eco-friendly weapons and organize culturally-sensitive, politically-correct collective farms.

Militarily, the left has other problems. They have saddled themselves with a longstanding disdain for military history and thought. A mob of whiney, untrained Antifa or BLM protestors doth not an army make. In recent decades, the left has sought not so much to co-opt the military as to rot it from within. When your idea of a military hero is Bowe Bergdahl or Bradley “call-me-Chelsea” Manning, it is evident that you’ve planned to fight your battles exclusively in the movies. The officer corps, or the part of it that’s worth the name, is ours. Although the left probably has a certain pool of minority ex-soldiers to draw on, I doubt they have a single general officer that still has his original issue genitalia. I’ll take a Texan and a Tar Heel against a metrosexual and a social justice warrior any day — while admitting that the latter might conduct a far more colorful parade. Much would depend on how the military happened to fragment, but even if one side or the other got the lion’s share of it there simply aren’t enough soldiers in the armed forces to garrison the entire country. More troops would have to be raised, equipped, and trained.

The right would probably win a real war, for all the reasons I have sketched above. I suspect it wouldn’t take the three years to decide the issue that it took in Spain, but predicting a short war has usually proven to be a fool’s occupation. Long or short, tens of millions of people would likely starve to death before war and reconstruction were over — far more than would die in actual fighting. Having seen a person starve to death, it is not a fate I’d wish on friends and family members — or even on my enemies. It might be, after all the legal shenanigans are done, the necessary cost of keeping western society alive — but it would no heroic action movie. Utopian ideologies die hard. War is hell.

http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2017/12/what_might_civil_war_be_like.html

The Real Choice In The Best Survival Gun: 10 Survival Guns To Own When Civilization Collapses

PREPAREDNESS
8

So what are the best survival guns to own? Before we can even attempt to answer that question we need first to understand what the answer to that question is not:

It’s not a random laundry list of various makes and models.

Because not all survival situations are the same. For instance:

  • Are we talking about surviving while lost in the wilderness?
  • Dealing with a broken down vehicle in the desert?
  • Post “Captain-Trips” outbreak from Stephen King’s – The Stand?
  • How about being stranded afloat on the open ocean after your fishing charter goes down?
  • What about defending your home from armed criminals and intruders?
  • Or are we talking about an all out TEOTWAWKI scenario?

In my accompanying firearm article, Top Ten Survival Rifles, I defined five different roles a good survival rifle must fill. But to be brutally honest, there is only one role for a survival handgun: self-defense.

Yes, I’m aware that you can hang a big-ass scope on top of a .44 Magnum and hunt deer, but, frankly, hunting game is no reason to carry a hand cannon like this in a survival situation.

That’s not to say there aren’t a few useful roles for a Dirty Harry gun when you’re trying to survive. But, hunting and long-range sniping are just not one of them. Instead, the handgun excels at short range self-defense.

It’s useful for ranges under 60 feet and ideal under 10 feet. And the type of survival gun what you want in tight and confined spaces.

Here’s a simple analogy:

It would be silly for an F-350 pickup to attempt to race a Mustang. So why would you try to employ a handgun as a sniper rifle? It’s always best to match the equipment with the goal. And with handguns, the goal is close range self-defense.

So the real question we need to answer is this: what are you defending yourself against? And this question can be further broken down into two broad categories:

  1. Animals – wild predators with the ability to kill you
  2. Humans – the most dangerous game of them all

With these two categories cleared up, the answer takes us not to the best choice of survival gun, but instead, we turn to the ideal choice of cartridge for the task at hand.

Here are the most common handgun rounds we will consider today:

  • .22 LR
  • .380 Auto
  • 9 MM Luger
  • .357 Sig
  • 38 Special
  • .357 Magnum
  • .40 S&W
  • .44 Magnum
  • .45 ACP
  • .500 S&W

Let’s face it, some of these cartridge sizes are impractical for survival, and we can dismiss them immediately.

Line Of Different Survival Gun Calibers

So Let’s Play The Elimination Game

.380 Auto? Really? Why the compromise? If your goal is to carry the maximum number of rounds possible, then go for .22LR. The .22LR is much more common and widely available compared to the .380 auto.

If you’re going to carry a 9mm, why a 9mm short? The round costs more; is less powerful, and not nearly as available as the 9mm Luger.

The 38 Special, while an old cartridge and still attractive, holds no advantage over the much more readily available 9 MM Luger. In fact, the 38 Special is a rimmed cartridge designed for revolvers, so you are also limited in capacity over most 9 MM semi-auto pistols.

If you ramp this baby all the way up to Plus P hollow-point, then why not just go with the .357 Magnum? You can always shoot 38 Special in a .357 revolver if you happen to find any.

The .357 Sig is a great cartridge fired by high-quality Sig Sauer and other pistols, but again, it is not nearly as prevalent at 9MM.

Sure, the old faithful Luger round may not technically be any better, but its use is far more widespread.

How can I say something bad about the .357 Magnum? It’s a devastatingly powerful round. However, it is not nearly as common as .45 ACP and not nearly as powerful as the .44 Magnum.

A post-apocalyptic world will begin running short of .357 Magnum very quickly. It always amazes me to see Rick on the Walking Dead always has a full cylinder of .357 Magnum hollow points.

For the same reason, a 38 Special is a poor substitute for the .357 Magnum.

Also, the .357 Magnum is a poor substitute for the .44 Magnum. If you have to go large, then go with the .44 Magnum or .45 ACP. We’ll learn why in a little bit.

The .40 S&W is an excellent police round with more stopping power than the 9 mm, but, then again, why round up just a bit. Why not round up a lot – the .45 ACP is more common and simply devastating.

The .500 S&W is a big, bad ass round fired from one heavy, giant hunk of a revolver. It is the most powerful handgun round in the world – designed to take down just about any animal you may run up against.

It was designed specifically for hunting. It’s also a round that will be hard to find in an emergency or survival situation.

So in my opinion, there is nothing you can kill with a .500 S&W you can’t kill with a .44 Magnum.

Yes – it may take two shots – but still not worth dragging this huge revolver with only a five round capacity in a survival situation.

So with all that said – I’m going to narrow our original list down to the following survival calibers:

  • .22 LR
  • 9MM Luger
  • .44 Magnum
  • .45 ACP

These rounds represent the full gamut of firepower we’ll need to survive, however, each one has its own niche.

Most Likely Survival Self Defense Scenarios

Very few people intend to end up in a survival situation. With an unexpected breakdown, a few poor decisions, and dumb luck you can end up in a survival anywhere, in any climate, and any topography. In fact, it’s most likely to occur in the place for which you haven’t prepared.

That’s just Murphy’s Law.

In these various climates, you may encounter any number of terrifying, deadly predators. Let’s look at a few:

snake

Snakes

Let’s face it; snakes are a one trick pony. They bite.

They won’t hunt you down, they don’t attack in packs, and they won’t even attack unless provoked, but it’s not out of the question to accidentally provoke one.

In most survival situations it’s wise to give them wid-berth, but, on the other hand, they can also be a valuable survival food source.

Now, you can kill them with any of the rounds mentioned above, but why would you waste .44 Magnums when a couple .22 LRs will suffice?

angry wolf barring teethWolves/Coyotes/Wild Dogs

If you find yourself under attack by a wolf or coyote, keep in mind that one animal is not stalking you—a pack is.

A wolf is a pack animal and his brother and sister Lobos will be waiting in the wings to ambush you. This is where a high capacity handgun is ideal. So a good, double stacked, 9mm is perfect for this application.

No doubt the .44 Magnum will make a wolf explode, but you only have six of those opportunities in that big gleaming revolver. If you miss, you better pray for a small pack.

The .45 ACP will do the trick as well, but again, it’s a big round, and at best you may be looking at ten rounds. So I prefer 9MM Luger in this circumstance for the combination of both capacity and power.

huge grizzly bear surveying the landscapeGrizzly Bears/Sharks/Big Cats

You may be wondering why I haven’t eliminated the .44 Magnum? These beasts are why. The grizzly bear is the bad-ass MF of the animal world.

When you are facing something nine feet tall, 850 pounds, with long teeth and six-inch claws – you need stopping power.

The .22LR represents a mosquito bite to this fellow—unless you hit him right in the eye. I’m not even sure a .22 LR would crack a grizzly skull.

The 9 mm will annoy this giant and maybe even kill him – after he bleeds out over the next few hours – long after you’ve bled out.

So this is the one instance where the .357 Magnum almost makes the grade.

I’ve been told no one should go into the Alaskan wilderness with less than a .357 Magnum. But, again, why not be sure and go with the .44 Magnum instead?

If you are in an area with large predators, bears, large cats, etc. plan on equipping yourself with a gun that can kill any of them with just one or two shots.

What if you’re in the open ocean being attacked by a shark? Believe me; you’ll be happy with the .44 Magnum here, too.

Fellow Man

Finally, this brings us to the most dangerous game of them all: Man.

This species can reason, plot, plan and adapt. He can be a solo attacker or work in large packs. He’s often unpredictable, illogical, and irrational. Or just as easily he can be cool, calm, collected with a predatory instinct.

Humans are a challenge to plan for. The toughest ones will arm themselves with similar or superior firepower – and they shoot back. In some cases they may even wear body armor, making them an even harder target.

Here’s the really bad news. In a post-apocalyptic world, after only a few months, the only humans you will be facing in combat will be the ones who are truly adept at self-survival. The talented well-armed fighters will remain.

The days of the rank amateur will be over.

However, there is some good news here. Any of the rounds mentioned above can kill a human, and no one wants to be shot by any of them.

The .22LR

Even the lowly .22 LR will crack a human skull.

Sub-sonic .22 LRs, by the way, deliver the same punch with all the sound of a survival air rifle – a good option if you don’t want to draw attention to yourself.

Still, let’s be realistic. You probably don’t want to be in a gunfight holding a .22 LR pistol even if it does have a few advantages. These guns tend to be accurate because your aim is not affected by recoil. Why? Because there is no recoil.

Also, many .22 LR semi-autos and even revolvers can hold more than six rounds – but you will need every one of those rounds. Unless you hit your opponent with a headshot, or possibly a heart shot, he is not going down right away.

With the .22 LR, there is no guarantee of penetration. If the guy turns and the round hits at an angle, the energy of the .22 LR may dissipate before doing any real damage.

The same applies to shooting through bulky clothing and winter coats. The one really nice thing about the .22 LR is that you can carry a lifetime supply of ammo on your person (assuming you’re storing ammo).

So if you are planning on bugging out, 500 .22 LR can be stashed in your bug out bag without destroying your back. 500 rounds of any other ammo and your bug out bag will weigh too much to carry.

On the other hand, if you are in a gunfight with a guy with anything larger, that lifetime will be over in minutes – in which case the other thousand rounds in your bug out bag really didn’t help, now did they?

The 9mm Semi-Auto

How About A 9mm Semi-Automatic? Now we’re talking.

The Luger is not the last word in stopping power, but it’s still a lethal round. There is a reason military forces all over the world have employed this round for almost a century.

The beauty of the 9 mm is two-fold. Many makes of semi-automatic pistols offer double-stacked magazine holding up to 17 rounds. More is always better.

Plus, next to the .22LR, the 9mm Luger is most common pistol cartridge in the world.

In a post-apocalyptic world, hopefully far into the future, I can imagine that the last round fired from any weapon anywhere may very well be a 9 mm Luger (Parabellum).

Also Read: 10 Best Edible Roots That Can Keep You Alive In A Survival Situation

The .44 Magnum

The .44 Magnum is no doubt a lethal round. If it can take down a grizzly, it can destroy a man. Let’s face it – if it can blow holes in engine blocks, it can blow bigger, messier holes in human beings. No doubt about it.

Most firearms that employ these rounds are revolvers – carrying at most six shots. Revolvers are inherently more accurate than semi-auto pistols, but the recoil of this round is monstrous.

This round will do the job in a pinch against a single assailant, maybe even a pair of bad guys. However, in a more crowded gunfight, you will want more capacity. And since you are carrying one in the case of a grizzly encounter, you’d be advised to carry a few speed-loaders and become proficient in their use.

The .45 ACP

That leaves the somewhat mythic .45 ACP. The catchphrase associated with this round is,

Against a human being, the .45 ACP is damned deadly.

That’s ten. And here’s a runner-up:

Against a human being, the .45 ACP is damned deadly.An assailant hit by a .45 ACP is usually immediately involuntarily incapacitated. [this excellent study “Handgun Wounding Factors and Effectiveness” refutes this previously made statement].

This round blows big holes in people and is generally delivered from firearms with at least eight round magazines. Since this round is fired from a semi-automatic pistol, most of the recoil is absorbed in working the action.

These guns tend to shoot smoothly with little recoil for so large a bullet, typically 230 grain. The only advantage the 9mm holds over the .45 ACP is capacity – which usually starts the whole argument of stopping power versus capacity – although at least one manufacturer offers a 13 round capacity for .45 ACP.

So now that we know which cartridges we should consider for each circumstance, we finally get to the point of this article, the top ten best survival guns to own and shoot.

The Ten Best Survival Guns (pistols)

These firearms are not listed in any particular order, and the order doesn’t indicate relative value or quality:

1 – Glock 17 – 9mm  (17 rds)

2 – Glock 41 – .45 ACP (13 rds)

3 – Springfield Armory XD9 – 9mm (16 rds)

4 – Springfield Armory XD-M – .45 ACP (13 rds)

5 – Beretta Model 92FS – 9mm (15rds)

6 – Sig Sauer P320 – .45 ACP (10 rds)

7 – Sig Sauer P226 – 9mm (15 rds)

8 – Smith and Wesson Model 629 – .44 Magnum (6 rds)

9 – Ruger Single Ten – .22LR (10 rds)

10 – Ruger Super Blackhawk – .44 Magnum (6rds)

That’s ten. And here’s a runner-up:

11 – Smith and Wesson Model 686 – .357 Magnum (6 rds) – (if you absolutely must have to have a .357 Magnum)

One caveat I do want to stress as you read this. I made this list practical for the average survivalist – which means there are no custom $3500 Les Baer 1911s on my list.

There are some great 1911s out there, like Colt, Kimber, Rock Island Armory and Ruger to name a few. HoweverI wanted a list of weapons the majority of people can afford while having the same utility as the more expensive alternatives.

Although the 1911s are a tried and true design with excellent ergonomics, reliability, recoil management, with precision sights and accuracy, they are also typically restricted to ten or fewer round magazines.

They also tend to be made of old school, heavy metal – pretty beefy to be carrying around in a survival situation when there are quality-made, light-weight composite-rich alternatives.

So to wrap this up:

The real choice in the best survival gun is not which one, but which two.

Carrying one survival gun for capacity and one survival gun for sheer power makes for a winning combination.

Fellow Man

Finally, this brings us to the most dangerous game of them all: Man.

This species can reason, plot, plan and adapt. He can be a solo attacker or work in large packs. He’s often unpredictable, illogical, and irrational. Or just as easily he can be cool, calm, collected with a predatory instinct.

Humans are a challenge to plan for. The toughest ones will arm themselves with similar or superior firepower – and they shoot back. In some cases they may even wear body armor, making them an even harder target.

Here’s the really bad news. In a post-apocalyptic world, after only a few months, the only humans you will be facing in combat will be the ones who are truly adept at self-survival. The talented well-armed fighters will remain.

The days of the rank amateur will be over.

However, there is some good news here. Any of the rounds mentioned above can kill a human, and no one wants to be shot by any of them.

The .22LR

Even the lowly .22 LR will crack a human skull.

Sub-sonic .22 LRs, by the way, deliver the same punch with all the sound of a survival air rifle – a good option if you don’t want to draw attention to yourself.

Still, let’s be realistic. You probably don’t want to be in a gunfight holding a .22 LR pistol even if it does have a few advantages. These guns tend to be accurate because your aim is not affected by recoil. Why? Because there is no recoil.

Also, many .22 LR semi-autos and even revolvers can hold more than six rounds – but you will need every one of those rounds. Unless you hit your opponent with a headshot, or possibly a heart shot, he is not going down right away.

With the .22 LR, there is no guarantee of penetration. If the guy turns and the round hits at an angle, the energy of the .22 LR may dissipate before doing any real damage.

The same applies to shooting through bulky clothing and winter coats. The one really nice thing about the .22 LR is that you can carry a lifetime supply of ammo on your person (assuming you’re storing ammo).

So if you are planning on bugging out, 500 .22 LR can be stashed in your bug out bag without destroying your back. 500 rounds of any other ammo and your bug out bag will weigh too much to carry.

On the other hand, if you are in a gunfight with a guy with anything larger, that lifetime will be over in minutes – in which case the other thousand rounds in your bug out bag really didn’t help, now did they?

The 9mm Semi-Auto

How About A 9mm Semi-Automatic? Now we’re talking.

The Luger is not the last word in stopping power, but it’s still a lethal round. There is a reason military forces all over the world have employed this round for almost a century.

The beauty of the 9 mm is two-fold. Many makes of semi-automatic pistols offer double-stacked magazine holding up to 17 rounds. More is always better.

Plus, next to the .22LR, the 9mm Luger is most common pistol cartridge in the world.

In a post-apocalyptic world, hopefully far into the future, I can imagine that the last round fired from any weapon anywhere may very well be a 9 mm Luger (Parabellum).

The .44 Magnum

The .44 Magnum is no doubt a lethal round. If it can take down a grizzly, it can destroy a man. Let’s face it – if it can blow holes in engine blocks, it can blow bigger, messier holes in human beings. No doubt about it.

Most firearms that employ these rounds are revolvers – carrying at most six shots. Revolvers are inherently more accurate than semi-auto pistols, but the recoil of this round is monstrous.

This round will do the job in a pinch against a single assailant, maybe even a pair of bad guys. However, in a more crowded gunfight, you will want more capacity. And since you are carrying one in the case of a grizzly encounter, you’d be advised to carry a few speed-loaders and become proficient in their use.

The .45 ACP

That leaves the somewhat mythic .45 ACP. The catchphrase associated with this round is,

Against a human being, the .45 ACP is damned deadly.

That’s ten. And here’s a runner-up:

Against a human being, the .45 ACP is damned deadly.An assailant hit by a .45 ACP is usually immediately involuntarily incapacitated. [this excellent study “Handgun Wounding Factors and Effectiveness” refutes this previously made statement].

This round blows big holes in people and is generally delivered from firearms with at least eight round magazines. Since this round is fired from a semi-automatic pistol, most of the recoil is absorbed in working the action.

These guns tend to shoot smoothly with little recoil for so large a bullet, typically 230 grain. The only advantage the 9mm holds over the .45 ACP is capacity – which usually starts the whole argument of stopping power versus capacity – although at least one manufacturer offers a 13 round capacity for .45 ACP.

So now that we know which cartridges we should consider for each circumstance, we finally get to the point of this article, the top ten best survival guns to own and shoot.

Also Read: 6 Off-Grid Lessons From Amish Life We All Should Learn

The Ten Best Survival Guns (pistols)

These firearms are not listed in any particular order, and the order doesn’t indicate relative value or quality:

1 – Glock 17 – 9mm  (17 rds)

2 – Glock 41 – .45 ACP (13 rds)

3 – Springfield Armory XD9 – 9mm (16 rds)

4 – Springfield Armory XD-M – .45 ACP (13 rds)

5 – Beretta Model 92FS – 9mm (15rds)

6 – Sig Sauer P320 – .45 ACP (10 rds)

7 – Sig Sauer P226 – 9mm (15 rds)

8 – Smith and Wesson Model 629 – .44 Magnum (6 rds)

9 – Ruger Single Ten – .22LR (10 rds)

10 – Ruger Super Blackhawk – .44 Magnum (6rds)

That’s ten. And here’s a runner-up:

11 – Smith and Wesson Model 686 – .357 Magnum (6 rds) – (if you absolutely must have to have a .357 Magnum)

One caveat I do want to stress as you read this. I made this list practical for the average survivalist – which means there are no custom $3500 Les Baer 1911s on my list.

There are some great 1911s out there, like Colt, Kimber, Rock Island Armory and Ruger to name a few. HoweverI wanted a list of weapons the majority of people can afford while having the same utility as the more expensive alternatives.

Although the 1911s are a tried and true design with excellent ergonomics, reliability, recoil management, with precision sights and accuracy, they are also typically restricted to ten or fewer round magazines.

They also tend to be made of old school, heavy metal – pretty beefy to be carrying around in a survival situation when there are quality-made, light-weight composite-rich alternatives.

So to wrap this up:

The real choice in the best survival gun is not which one, but which two.

Carrying one survival gun for capacity and one survival gun for sheer power makes for a winning combination.

 

Best War Time Recipes: Preparedness Cooking Skills (and recipes) From WWI Will Keep You Alive During WWIII

World War 3 is already in motion and every war machine and nuclear missile that the world superpowers show off will be used to destroy both land and sea-based ecosystems, potentially leading to global nuclear famine. This is now a fact, we can’t no longer say ”might happen” since is already happening.

A few hours watching the Discovery Channel can prompt extreme survival fantasies involving frog licking and urine drinking, but what basic skills would you actually need to survive in a world consumed by a nuclear exchange?

In today’s post, we are going to take a look back into the past and learn something that today many people are completely unable to do anymore….cook something from scratch. It’s quite shocking but these days the average American home eats a majority of its meals using prepackaged, highly processed foods that require very little skill to cook. If it doesn’t come out of a box, a can, or a plastic pouch most people are clueless when it comes to cooking.

Learning how to cook from scratch is something you cannot afford to ignore if you want to survive WWIII. In order to successfully build a stockpile of emergency food, you’re going to need to learn how to cook, and you’re going to need to learn how to do it with basic ingredients.

During WWII eating habits were changed greatly by wartime shortages. For many people rationing, synthetic foods, strange food combinations and the restrictions of the daily diet were among the most vivid memories of life in WWII. The rationing system was seen as complicated but fair and was popular for this reason. People registered at their local shops. Each family/household had a ration book. The ration book was handed over to the shopkeeper, who removed the coupons (as well as taking the appropriate sum of money).

Food rationing was introduced in stages, beginning in January 1940. Foods that were rationed included bacon, butter, sugar, meat, tea, cooking fat, jam, cheese, eggs and milk.
Rationing started on January 8th, 1940, when bacon, butter, and sugar were rationed (by weight), followed by meat in March 1940 (by price rather than weight). In July 1940, tea, cooking fat, jam, and cheese were also rationed (by weight). Eggs and milk were rationed by allocating supplies to shops in proportion to the number of customers registered there. People were permitted one egg per fortnight but this was not guaranteed, as with other foods. Rations varied considerably; the cheese ration, for example, varied from 1 oz (30g) per person per week to 8oz (225g). The meat ration worked out at approximately 1lb (500 grams) per week.

This is how people managed to stay alive during the war, you don’t have to learn how to do everything at once. Take it slow and learn how to do a couple of things really well before moving on. If you try to do everything at once, you’ll probably end up with a bunch of food that nobody wants to eat. Take the time to learn the basics, and take the time to perfect what you’ve learned.

Despite all the warnings, the only real way to get started is to just jump in there and have some fun. There are going to be some setbacks, some total bombed meals, and even some meals that are so bad no one will want to eat them; but in the end, you are going to be more prepared, save a lot of money, be much healthier, and have a skill that’s going to last a lifetime.

As a supplement to this article, I found this great cookbook from World War I, Best War Time Recipes, which was released by the Royal Baking Powder Co.

The book was released by the Royal Baking Company as a way to help with war efforts when things like wheat flour were not available because it was being shipped over to the troops.

The recipes in this book can help show you what is possible and is a great addition to your preparedness cooking and food storage stockpile.

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Don’t Watch TV Warns CIA Agent!

Alan Watts goes over what he learned from a CIA agent regarding television and why you must stay away from it! Everything you see on the TV and in movies is to make you think a certain way. Billions of dollars is spent to convince you of what they want you to believe. They tell you that 9/11 was done by a bunch of guys in a cave when it was done by our own government. They were blaming Osama Bin Laden the first day it happened but did you know the FBI never once listed him as being responsible for the crime? Have you noticed how the homosexual agenda is pushed on almost every show now? This is no accident either. Dr Dunegan was told in 1969 by Dr. Day who was a high ranking doctor in the new world order system many shocking statements.

Dunegan was told they could actually cure 98% of all cancers at the time but those cures would not be released because there were “too many people in the world”. He was also told they would be pushing the homosexual lifestyle in movies and television so many more people would get into the lifestyle and not have babies!

Anybody who watches ESPN knows they always have a very anti-gun stance. The NFL won’t even let a gun manufacturer advertise on the Super Bowl for any price! It’s all about mind control of the masses! We’re all under mind control to some extent.

It can be done! 5 Animals we recommend you raising if you’re a novice farmer

While the thought of adding livestock to a traditional backyard can seem daunting, even a beginner can raise several animals. But before you decide which animal(s) you want to raise, ensure that your backyard is spacious enough so your livestock will have room to roam in. Since these animals will be a source of greener food options, the least you can do is give them a clean and healthy environment to live in.

We’ve listed five animals that are relatively easy to raise. Remember to start small before you decide on raising all five animals at once.

  1. Chickens Chickens are a homesteader favorite because they provide eggs and are also great for keeping your backyard bug- and pest-free. Depending on the breed, chickens can lay a lot of eggs. However, it can take at least four to eight months before chickens reach the laying age. They also require enough space to roam around during the day. Give your chickens at least four square feet of living space. If you want to raise chickens for meat, keep in mind that this can be challenging since it’ll take several months before they’re ready. Chickens raised for meat can stink up your backyard, so make sure you’re ready to deal with this. Most hens will lay eggs for three years. Any longer than that and you will need to plan for their eventual retirement. (Related: Feed your backyard chickens for free with garden produce, common weeds.)
  2. Ducks – Muscovy ducks are the perfect breed to raise in a traditional backyard. These ducks don’t quack, so you’ll only hear them make “quiet hissing and pipping noises” unlike other duck breeds. While they don’t require a big pond, Muscovy ducks do require water that has been cleaned regularly. These ducks are a good source of eggs and meat, but they may forage in your garden, so take measures to protect your produce. Ducks are also good for pest control because they eat flies, mosquitoes, and snails. Keep Muscovy ducks in pairs, and clip their wings if you wish to keep their flying in control. Don’t forget to provide them with a roost since ducks need more space than chickens typically require. If you want to let these ducks loose, keep in mind that their droppings can run “loose,” which is good for your garden but not for your porch.
  3. Goats – If you’re interested in raising goats, consider the Nigerian Dwarf goat. This breed is suitable for traditional backyards, and the milk it provides is nutritious. Goat milk can also be used to make delicious cheese, and these animals can help keep your bushes under control. This smaller goat breed only requires at least one-fourth of the space a full-sized dairy goat needs, but give them at least 16 square feet per goat. Keep at least two goats since they need to be in a herd to stay happy. Sturdy fencing and housing will keep the goats warm and dry. Do check with your neighbors and zoning before getting some goats because they are noisy animals.
  4. Quail – Quail is another great option for backyard livestock due to their small size, which gives you many options when it comes to housing. Quails need a minimum of one square foot per bird. When it comes to egg laying, quails can start producing eggs after six weeks. They’re also fully grown after eight weeks. Even though quail eggs are smaller than chicken eggs, the former are creamier. Keep in mind that quails can also be noisy, so only keeping hens might be a better option, especially if you have neighbors that aren’t fond of noisy animals. Quail meat is darker and has a flavor similar to turkey, although you might need a couple before you feel full. When raising quail for meat, a 4:5 hen to rooster is ideal. Quails are low maintenance as long as you give them a high protein feed. Without enough protein, they can resort to cannibalism.
  5. Rabbits – If you’re looking for quieter livestock, get some rabbits. They’re easy to raise, and they require a cage that only measures at least 3×2 feet. But if your space is big enough, consider getting them a bigger cage. Start with three rabbits made up of two does and a buck. Rabbit meat tastes like chicken meat, and it’s mostly white meat and very lean. Do keep in mind that rabbits must be kept cool, and they don’t breed during the hot summer months. Give them shade and some frozen water bottles, fans, and misters to keep them comfortable.

5 things to remember when raising livestock

Once you’ve chosen from the list of suggested livestock above, don’t forget these five tips for raising livestock:

  • Choose your livestock well – Consider the pros and cons before you decide on the kind of animal you want to raise.
  • Think of the end game – Choose the animal based on what you and your family need. Is it eggs, meat, or milk?
  • Expenses – Make sure you have the funds to care for these animals well so your efforts don’t go to waste.
  • Time investment – Livestock require a lot of time and attention, so don’t bother planning if you can’t commit to taking care of the animals properly.
  • Emotional investment – Remember that your chickens or goats are not kept as pets. While you feed and nurture them, livestock are primarily a food source. Don’t get attached, and if you have children, raising livestock is a good way to teach them about natural food sources.

You can read more articles about raising livestock and other homesteading tips at Homesteading.news.

Sources include:

ImperfectlyHappyHomesteading.com

MelissaKNorris.com

Worried About Doomsday? You Can Rent This Bunker for $1000 Per Year

Vivos has converted a military fortress in South Dakota to a bunker community where the affluent can hope to ride out the end of the world in style. The bunkers are provided under a 99-year lease, and will need to be outfitted with necessary tech.

Apartments for the Apocalypse

The current state of the Earth, in terms of national and global politics, environment, and other factors, has many justifiably scared (or at least leery) of what the future holds. This has caused an increased interest in doomsday preparation, and companies are capitalizing on the opportunity.

The possibility of nuclear war is at levels we haven’t seen since the Cold War, and climate change is causing record temperatures on a consistent basis. Earlier this year, these factors led the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists to move the symbolic Doomsday Clock to two and a half minutes to midnight.

To ease the minds of the more affluent among us who share these concerns, Vivos Shelter Networks has transformed a former military fortress in South Dakota into a complex of 575 bunkers, which it is leasing for customers to outfit into luxurious shelters against the end of the world. The company promises: “The Vivos global network of hardened, deep underground, survival shelters is being built to survive virtually all future catastrophes and disasters.”

Heavily Gated Community

Vivos’ bunkers are available for a 99-year lease at $1,000 a year, along with a $25,000 deposit paid upon signing. That pricing only covers the cost of the bunker itself; customers would be expected to pay contractors (or Vivo itself) to outfit the bunkers with electricity, a septic system, air filtration, and any amenities with which they want to cram in their limited survival space.

If that level of survival luxury isn’t in the cards, you can also buy a space in a shared bunker, pre-furnished, outfitted, and stocked with linens and household supplies, for a cool $5,000, plus a monthly expense fee of $50.

A man stands in the brightly-lit doorway of one of Vivos' dark bunkers, outfitted to help those with enough money to survive a doomsday scenario.
Image credit: Vivos

We must note that the company’s marketing material focuses almost exclusively on sensationalism, by choosing to cite prophecy (like the long-debunked theory that the Mayan calendar prophesied an apocalypse) and pseudoscience over very real threats, like climate change, that are supported by credible scientific evidence.

Even so, experts have still noticed a trend here, with the rise of what Becky Alexis-Martin, Senior Research Fellow at the University of Southampton, calls in an article on The Conversation “bourgeois bunkers.” She adds that, “It seems that as ever, only the moneyed, connected and powerful are entitled to outlive a nuclear catastrophe.”

Obviously, bunkers are not the answer in addressing the issues facing our world. Battling climate change and voting for leaders who will work toward peace are much more effective ways to ensure the survival of the planet. Supporting efforts that will accomplish these goals can ensure that everyone, regardless of financial standing, will have a chance to live out full lives on this planet — not hiding underneath it.

Civil War Recipe: Hardtack (1861)

Soldiers-Eating2

Hardtack. The Ancient Romans had them. Nelson’s troops kept barrels of them in their naval vessels. And these cracker-like squares were a staple ration for American soldiers on both sides of the Civil War.

Soldier sitting on a box of hardtackThough they’re called different things in different cultures, this basic recipe has been a staple for militaries around the world for centuries. Made of flour and water, and sometimes a bit of salt or sugar, they are sturdy, filling and will last a long time if kept dry. Indeed, some soldiers kept a few as souvenirs after the war, and they are commonly on display in Civil War museums over 150 years later.

A naval blockade kept wheat imports from reaching Confederate states, and so much of the hardtack rationed to soldiers earlier in the war was leftover from the Mexican-American War (1846-1848). Meanwhile, government bakeries in the north were supplying hardtacks to Union troops, who were rationed nine to ten each, per day.

Eating one will make it difficult to imagine how any human being could consume that many hardtacks each day. The dryness sucks out any moisture from your mouth. The heavy wafer in your hand feels just as heavy in the stomach. They are so dense, soldiers used to use them as small plates. And, of course, the flavor is incredibly uninteresting – you’re basically just eating flour. And that, of course, is the point of making them. Where other food blogs often just post old recipes, I’ve always insisted on making whatever I post – firmly believing that much about what you can learn about the history of the food comes from the actual making and eating of it.

Thanks to John Billings’ memoir of his life as a Union soldier, Hardtack and Coffee (1887), we have a very accurate description of what Civil War hardtack rations were like:

What was hardtack? It was a plain flour-and-water biscuit. Two which I have in my possession as mementos measure three and one-eighth by two and seven-eighths inches, and are nearly half an inch thick. Although these biscuits were furnished to organizations by weight, they were dealt out to the men by number, nine constituting a ration in some regiments, and ten in others; but there were usually enough for those who wanted more, as some men would not draw them. While hardtack was nutritious, yet a hungry man could eat his ten in a short time and still be hungry. When they were poor and fit objects for the soldiers’ wrath, it was due to one of three conditions: first, they may have been so hard that they could not be bitten; it then required a very strong blow of the fist to break them; the second condition was when they were moldy or wet, as sometimes happened, and should not have been given to the soldiers: the third condition was when from storage they had become infested with maggots.

When the bread was moldy or moist, it was thrown away and made good at the next drawing, so that the men were not the losers; but in the case of its being infested with the weevils, they had to stand it as a rule ; but hardtack was not so bad an article of food, even when traversed by insects, as may be supposed. Eaten in the dark, no one could tell the difference between it and hardtack that was untenanted. It was no uncommon occurrence for a man to find the surface of his pot of coffee swimming with weevils, after breaking up hardtack in it, which had come out of the fragments only to drown; but they were easily skimmed off, and left no distinctive flavor behind.

Having gone so far, I know the reader will be interested to learn of the styles in which this particular article was served up by the soldiers. Of course, many of them were eaten just as they were received — hardtack plain; then I have already spoken of their being crumbed in coffee, giving the “hardtack and coffee.”

Probably more were eaten in this way than in any other, for they thus frequently furnished the soldier his breakfast and supper. But there were other and more appetizing ways of preparing them. Many of the soldiers, partly through a slight taste for the business but more from force of circumstances, became in their way and opinion experts in the art of cooking the greatest variety of dishes with the smallest amount of capital.

Some of these crumbed them in soups for want of other thickening. For this purpose they served very well. Some crumbed them in cold water, then fried the crumbs in the juice and fat of meat. A dish akin to this one which was said to make the hair curl, and certainly was indigestible enough to satisfy the cravings of the most ambitious dyspeptic, was prepared by soaking hardtack in cold water, then frying them brown in pork fat, salting to taste. Another name for this dish was skillygalee. Some liked them toasted, either to crumb in coffee, or if a sutler was at hand whom they could patronize, to butter. The toasting generally took place from the end of a split stick.

Then they worked into milk-toast made of condensed milk at seventy-five cents a can; but only a recruit with a big bounty, or an old vet, the child of wealthy parents, or a reenlisted man did much in that way. A few who succeeded by hook or by crook in saving up a portion of their sugar ration spread it upon hardtack. And so in various ways the ingenuity of the men was taxed to make this plainest and commonest, yet most serviceable of army food, to do duty in every conceivable combination.

HardtackTIPS AND TRICKS

The holes in crackers are made by a process called “docking.” These help the cracker to bake evenly and prevent them from rising like a bread. Historically, this was accomplished using ominous looking hand-held tools, but by the Civil War, there were mechanical tools that accomplished the task. I used a plastic chopstick, but you could also use a pen cap. Dig around your kitchen drawers and see what you’ve got.

The entire premise of hardtack is that you add a bit of water to flour so that you can create a dough just pliable enough to shape, and then bake as much of the moisture out as possible. So be conservative when you’re adding water – stop just when the dough comes together. It should be the consistency of a slightly dry play dough. If you had too much water by accident, just add a bit more flour until it comes back together.

You don’t want the hardtack to darken much by baking, and you certainly don’t want it to burn. It benefits from a long baking in a low-temp oven. If it isn’t too humid where you’re at, you can also leave them out after baking to further dry out on the cooling rack.

The recipe below makes roughly fifteen 3×3 hardtacks. They will last quite a long time if you keep them in a dry, sealed area where they can’t be reached by insects.

THE TAKE-AWAY

This recipe certainly sheds light on the monotonous palate afforded to soldiers in the Civil War. When properly baked, they are quite tough, which explains why soldiers would often soak them in coffee or soup prior to eating. Another option at the time was to fry salt pork, soak the hardtack in cold water, and then fry the softened hardtack in the pork grease.

Hardtack reminds me of a bread described in a novel I was recently reading. Bakers made a particular kind of bread for survival, but it was completely inedible and contained rocks and sticks. You didn’t eat the bread. The idea was that if you stared at the bread long enough, you could think of dozens of other things you could eat besides that and you’d never go hungry.

But such were the conditions – particularly for the blockaded South – that hardtack could be seen as a treat. Today, there is still an original supplier of the Union army that makes and sells hardtack, mostly to Civil War re-enactors.** Outside this market and the gastronomically-inclined historian, a kind of hardtack can be found on supermarket shelves in Hawaii and modern-day doomsdayers are rediscovering it as the perfect survivalist food.

Whatever your reason for making them, do watch your teeth.

** Update (March 19, 2017): G. H. Bent & Co. has operated in Milton, MA since 1801. A gas explosion in 2006 damaged the building significantly, but re-opened later that year. The company was sold in 2013 and, as of writing, the bakery has re-opened with a new website but the online shop is still closed.

The Recipe
2 cups flour
1/2 tablespoon salt (optional)
1/2 to 3/4 cup water

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. Combine flour with salt in a mixing bowl. Add water and mix with hands until the dough comes together. Roll out on a table to about 1/3 inch thickness. Use a knife to cut 3×3 squares from the dough. Place on baking sheet, and use a dowel (see note above) to make 16 evenly-spaced holes in each square. Bake for at least four hours, turning over once half-way through baking. Cool on a rack in a dry room.