Summary of Details

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  Log house: 6 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 2600 square feet:

40′ x 60′ Metal Barn

 14.67 acres with a gorgeous lake view in the Ozarks

  • Address: 225 Madison 3469 Huntsville, AR 72740
  • Selling price: $425,000
  • We really want this to be used for creating a vegan retreat center, community, and/or animal sanctuary

Buildings

 Log House

  • Attached basement apartment with two car garage and storm room:  3600 square feet
  • Total of 6 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms.  This includes the apartment.
  • Spacious kitchen, dining area, and living room. Great for gatherings. 

Barn

  • 40’ x 60’ metal building with wood stove, bathroom, and potential for a kitchen.
  • Concrete slab floor and windows.
  • Great for housing animals or for community gatherings or makers space.

Land

  • 40 percent pasture, 60 percent forest
  • Plenty of water: small pond, 3 springs, 2 cisterns, and a wet water creek
  • Permaculture design has been done. There is a small fenced in food forest with  fruit trees, hugelkultur bed
  • Plenty of garden beds already started including a large hugelkultur bed in the front yard.
  • An abundance of native plants and trees including persimmon.

Access:

  • 1 hour from Fayetteville and Eureka Springs.
  • 10 and 20 minutes from small towns
  • 5 minutes off a paved highway on a country road

Neighborhood

  • Friendly neighbors, mostly Christians, who are part of Living Springs Community
  • Access to 40 acres Prayer Lake for swimming, canoeing, and kayaking. No motorized boats allowed.
  • Learn more about the origin of the neighborhood at http://www.christiancommunities.com

Find out many more details here: Keeper

 

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Looking At The Land In Terms of Animal Sanctuary Potential

Selecting a site for your sanctuary can be more dif cult than you might think. You must consider, among other factors, zoning, public access, and the availability of resources and services.

Your Big-Picture Plan

Before choosing a site, know your plan. What is the overall strategy of your organization? Are you focusing on education, or is rescue the most important aspect of your work?

A site close to an urban area can enable extensive education and outreach, but higher property and operating costs, as well as zoning restrictions, may limit the number of animals you can shelter. The farther from farming communities you are, the more expensive farm-related goods and services will be. Obtaining feed and bedding for a shelter in a non-farming area may cost more than double what it would in a farm-heavy region.

We are near lots of farmers with plenty farm-related goods and services 20 minutes away. I doubt if there is any limit on the animals. There are so few restrictions out here. 

Additionally, you must consider the direction that local officials plan to take with available land; you don’t want to end up needing to move your sanctuary to accommodate a strip mall.

We are adjacent to a neighborhood that has lots only sold to residents. Chances of any kind of strip mine or industrial stuff happening out here are so slim. 

With a rural site, your shelter will have access to cheaper feed, more acreage, and more extensive vet services for the species you will be sheltering, but it will be less accessible to the public.

We are 1 hour from Fayetteville, 1 hour from Eureka Springs, 20 minutes from Huntsville. Roads are good.

Zoning

Before acquiring land, make sure it is appropriately zoned for the type and number of animals you plan to shelter. Some areas prohibit or restrict certain species. For instance, in many places, it is legal to keep hens but not roosters.

No restrictions. 

Zoning also pertains to structures. Have a plan for the buildings you think you will need — then seek an area zoned to allow more structures than that, in case you grow. To ensure you get the appropriate permits, decide how many barns you will have and whether there will be residential housing, an education center, guest facilities, and/or parking areas. Again, the closer you are to an urban area, the more difficult it is to get operating and building permits.

Because there is a limit of one house per 5 acres (crazy!), you can build one more house. but by somehow purchasing about 1/4 acre, you could build another house. Building codes are minimal.

There are places that can be developed for parking areas. The retreat center has 6 bedrooms including the apartment. Plenty of space for an education center to be built. 

You should also find out whether the burial of animals is allowed on the property. If you can’t bury onsite, you will have to pay for rendering or cremation, the latter of which can be quite costly.

You can bury animals on the property and have any kind of animal. 

Physical Features

Water Supply. Make sure the property has wells that can handle the number of animals, residential houses, etc. you will need. Having a bad well or scant access to water can make the property worthless as a sanctuary. In the western United States, there are many drought areas that have limited groundwater and water usage restrictions.

We have LOTs of water! 4 springs, a pond and wet weather creeks. 

Type of Land. The land you choose must be appropriate for the type of animals you will be sheltering. For example, large animals, especially as they age, require at land to live on. A site predominated by wooded

areas, rough terrain, or dangerous drop-offs could prove problematic.

If you plan to shelter many grazing animals, you will need either pasture land or the resources to feed them hay, which can be very expensive. If your property receives inadequate rainfall and is not set up to be irrigated, you will probably need to supplement grazing with hay anywhere from one to 12 months out of the year.

We have pretty consistent rainfall and plenty of pasture land. Some of it could be made into hay. 

No dangerous drop offs or rough terrain as long as animals are fenced. 

Drainage is another important consideration. If you are looking in an area that gets a great deal of rain, make sure that the property does not flood constantly.

Since most of the land is at a slight slope, there is no flooding. 

Also, when you are choosing building sites for barns, be careful to avoid areas that could flood, as well as sandy soils that might sink or heave. Find out as much as possible about a piece of land before committing.

The barn does take on water when it rains a lot. It has a concrete floor so it doesn’t hurt anything, and something could be figured out. Even in heaviest rains (we just had about 8 days straight of rain), no flooding, just puddles. 

Animal Comfort and Safety. Consider the needs and vulnerabilities of the species you plan to shelter, as well as the costs of accommodating them in adverse conditions. For example, Cornish or broiler chickens fare poorly in extreme heat, especially in humid climates. No place is perfect for all species, but you can make sure to have adequate shade, the ability to cool animals in the summer, and the ability to keep them warm in the winter.

The barn would be great to keep animals warm, even having a wood stove. Trees all over property great for shade. The pond is a cool place to hang out. We have four seasons here. Very hot in summer, but the breeze from the lake makes it cooler. 

Check what plants are growing on the property, as some are toxic to certain species. For instance, rhododendron is poisonous to goats. If you are unsure of what poisonous plants grow in your region, check with your local cooperative extension.

Poison ivy is the worst plant. It is all over the forest, and near the spring area.Otherwise, we have not spotted poisonous plants.  

You should also know what type of pasture is available. Even land planted by producers especially for farm animals may be insufficiently safe, comfortable, and nourishing since it need only sustain these animals until they are market-ready rather than keep them healthy over the course of long lives.

I’m not sure what kind of grasses are growing. 

Also, check with your cooperative extension to learn about predatory animals that could be a threat to your residents. Many areas are heavily populated by coyotes, fox, bear, etc.; barns and fencing must be designed to keep out all predator species in your area.

We do have coyotes in the area. Very few bears and other predators. There is some fencing around the property. 

 

Veterinary Services. One of the greatest challenges you will face is finding a veterinarian to treat your animals. In rural areas, you are likely to encounter veterinary practices that deal with sheep, goats, and cattle. Vets who treat pigs, waterfowl, turkeys, and chickens, however, are more difficult to find. Even vets who specialize in avian medicine may not be comfortable working with industrial birds. Horse vets will often work on other large animals, but they generally do not provide comprehensive services. As you care for your animals, you will sooner or later encounter the need for diagnostics, surgeries, and other procedures that require hospitalization. This may mean a long drive, which could be nancially impractical and a detriment to your animals’ well-being. For these reasons, access to high-quality and appropriate veterinary services should be a priority in your search for a sanctuary location.

We found a vet who is 20 minutes away. We need to check references–but he says he treats all farm animals.