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WI Storms and MacFarlane Pheasants

On January 30, 2024 in Winter Preparation by Bill MacFarlane


We have had lots of snow and cold weather during the first month of 2024! We plan in advance for these occurrences and thought you might like to know the process we use to keep up with a typical Wisconsin winter at MacFarlane Pheasants.

In Preparation for a Storm:


  • All prop posts (2x4s) are on wooden blocks/concrete blocks to keep from freezing in the ground.
  • If the forecast calls for heavy/wet snow, all 10’ prop posts are taken down and replaced with 6’ posts to keep the nets off the ground. This change also takes stress off the nets from the weight of the snow (if it sticks), which would cause posts to break and tear nets.
  • Ice is cleaned out of water pans used for watering, flipped over, and stacked to prevent them from being buried and frozen in the ground when time to water again.
  • Feeders are filled to make sure they have enough feed in them to last through the storm in case roads are unusable.
  • During the snowstorm, crews will beat the snow that is sticking on the top nets, with brooms, to prevent buildup.
  • Bags of cracked corn are on hand to feed birds during extremely cold weather.
  • Employees are on call if needed.
  • Trucks/tractors are placed in the buildings out of the potential elements. 

After a Winter Storm Ends:

  • Pens are checked pen damage and prop posts are replaced if broken.
  • Any stray birds are caught.
  • Snow is cleaned out of feed troughs so birds can easily get to their feed.
  • Snow is removed from the nets.
  • Roads are cleared around the flight pens.
  • If nets are down, snow is removed from them and prop posts are put back up in the pens to prevent birds from being trapped or getting loose.

Snow in Wisconsin is inevitable so this is an important part of our safety plan.

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