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Useful survival knowledge...got any?

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posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 12:14 AM
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This thread is for useful,realistic survival/sustenance idea's. In other words, things you can do or knowledge you have to share that will help people in survival situations or simply to be more self sufficient.
I'll start- The most important things for survival are shelter,food and water. Most of us have homes,so that's pretty well covered. Chances are you won't lose your home, if you do I'm not sure what I can say to help.

As for food though, there are things certain things that could make it difficult to get food. Maybe you loose your job,maybe there's shortages, who knows. What can you do to get food? Probably the easiest thing I could offer is to grow potatoes and onions. Different area's will allow you to grow different things, but most places will lwt you grow at least potatoes. The reason I chose potatoes is because they are very easy to grow, they provide a good amount of food for the space they take, and they store quite easily. Same goes for onions. For potatoes, I found that I can grow more potatoes under a pile of straw than I do in my garden. I did this just as an experiment this year by dumping some of last years potatoes in the bush, and then dropping and ols straw bale on top of them. I cut the strings ans spread the straw a bit, but that was all. I never once watered them or otherwise cared for them. We did have good rainfall this year though,so that helped.
Anyway, when it was time to harvest the taters in my garden, I remembered the ones under the straw and went to check them out. To my surprise, the yield was way better than the garden potatoes,and they were beautifully clean insteasd of covered in dirt. Also,harvesting was way easier,no digging in the dirt just lift up the straw and collect potatoes. I should have done it a month earlier,as some had grown too large and began to rot.
I put them in burlap sacks and store them in the basement. They last nicely through the winter and while they may be a bit wrinkly,remain edible for many months. In the spring, just take some of your leftover potatoes that have sprouted and plant them again! You can grow hundreds of pounds of potatoes in a relatively small area,and with the skin on they are quite nutritious.
Onions are easy to grow and are great for adding flavor to things. They store extremely well in a cool dark environment, and are usually very easy to grow.
I grow lots of other stuff too, but these are the ones I've found most practical for longer term storage that would lend itself to survival and sustenance.

Now,lets talk protein.Most of us want meat, and are used to getting it regularily. However, if a situation arises where meat is unobtainable by your usual means,what can you do? I'm a lifelong hunter and fisherman, but I know that this isn't always a reliable way to get meat. Hunting is hard,especially if your mobility is limited. If you can't drive to the store and buy meat, you probably won't be driving very far to hunt either. So,having a meat supply close at hand would be ideal. For this, I think you'd be ahrd pressed to do better than chickens and rabbits. Chickens obviously have the advantage of providing eggs as well as meat, but they are also quite hardy and self sufficient. You can really cut down on feeding needs if you have a yard where they can scratch and peck. They also reproduce fairly well on their own,so you get more chickens for no extra cost. Rabbits are prolific breeders, so I think they'd be a good choice for sustainable protein. It's been quite a few years since I raised them, but if I recall correctly they were not too expensive to maintain because I had a large wire enclosure that I would move around the yard so they could eat.

Pigs are another good meat animal. They grow very quickly,but also eat alot. Forunately,they eat damn near anything, so that makes it a bit easier to keep them. Keeping 2 pigs is better than one, because they will compete for food and thus grow quicker. A pig is a valuable commodity and you could trade it whole or slaughter it and sell the meat,so an extra pig is never a bad thing.

As far as butchering goes, get yourself a book, a knife(and sharpening stone) and grinder and you can butcher anything. I remember the first time I butchered a deer it took me forever. Now, I can go from hanging to packed into the freezer in about 4 hours,by myself, it just takes a it of practice.

Hunting and fishing are great ways to supplement your food supply. I've gone mostly to bowhunting as I enjoy the lack of other hunters in the field during bow season, but for most people rifle is more practical. There could possibly be situations where you'd prefer not to be heard though, and in that case the bow is the way to go. If you do want to bowhunt, get one and practice at least 3-4 times a week for 4-6 months before taking to the woods. A modern compound bow is much easier to learn to shoot well than a traditional recurve or longbow,and a crossbow is easier still. I've used all 3,and if your new to the sport and need to be proficient quickly,the crossbow is the way to go. They are somewhat heavier and bulkier than a compound, but if you draw it straight,they are usually very accurate. The range is about the same as a compound,although the crossbow are a fair bit noisier. With any of these though,you need to know your range before you shoot. You must know,within about 3-5 yards, how close you are to the animal. Arrows drop fast,so if you miss your guess,you miss your target. Laser range finders are great, but you can learn to judge range fairly well by eye too. If you can get within 25 yards or so, it is much less of an issue as the trajectory is still pretty flat at that range. Beyond that, it gets worse,and quickly. Still, most people can learn to shoot to at least 50 yards with good equipment and lots of practice.

As for rifles, everyone has there preferences and usually any one of them will work. I've killed animals with a lot of different calibers and generally if you put the bullet where it needs to be, the animal won't go far. Still,for economy and practicality,.22 rifles are hard to beat. They are quiet(relativly)light,cheap to shoot and easy to shoot well. They can be used to take all manner of small game,and in the right hands even fairly large game. They also provide a level of security and defense,as no one wants to get shot,even with a .22.

If you live in an area where fishing is possible,that can be a big bonus. I've always enjoyed fishing, but I think the most practical way to fish might be to run a trotline or small net. That would free you up to do different things while your apparatus fished for you.

These are the things that I've thought that I would do, because it's what I know. However,there is lots I don't know,and that's where I'm hoping others here can chime in. I'd say pretty much all of us rely on refridgeration to keep our food fresh. This is something I'd like to be able to do without. Maybe I'll never need to,but it;s something that would be very good to know if it ever WAS needed. How would you go about preserving the protein that you harvested,either from hunting or your own raised stock, if you couldn't freeze it? I know you can make jerky,but how many have ever tried to make a large quantity of jerky,especially if you don't have an oven or dehydrator to do it in? How long does it take,how do you know when it's properly cured, how long will it keep etc? These are the real,practical survival questions I'd like to find answers to. Of course, salt used to be used to preserve meat as well,has anyone tried that?

What survivalskills do you have that you could share with the rest of us? Mybe there's some people here who can tell you how to build a practical and economical generator that you can use to make small amounts of electricity, enough so you could run a few lights maybe. How about water? I know you could collect rain water, but that's not always reliable. How do you get it,store it and keep it drinkable? I'm interested to see what skills people have, and I mean things you can actually do or have done,not something seen on youtube. Post up what you know,and hopefully we can all learn stuff!




posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 12:29 AM
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YES! learn to grow mushrooms in your closet, basement,cave.
that way you will always have a simple food source that grows on its own.



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 12:39 AM
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dont eat the yellow snow.


the point of survival and evolution is to find your own path, aye? your method of survival could be completely different from mine, but still, either way is survivng.

use your head. you dont need anything else to be honest. a man with a brain can get out of situations you wouldnt believe. kind of like the soldier who (alone) captured over 100 nazis by sniping, and seeming to be everywhere at once. or another similar story, where dozens of nazis were captured after surrendering to a minesweeper (they thought his metal-detector was a secret weapon)

we are stubborn animals, i doubt you would have trouble surviving



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 12:41 AM
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In the South you can't grow potatoes, the fire ants eat them up. I can't seem to grow onions here either, the soils hard packed clay and we don't get enough rain.
If you don't have electricity anymore you can't freeze, refrigerate, or dehydrate meat. Learn how to build a smoker
building, or pack the meat in troughs of salt. This is what the pioneers did. Also one could share and trade with neighbors. Chickens require corn to eat. They grow up slow and take time to produce eggs, that is if some other creature doesn't eat them first, like the neighbor's dog. Free ranging chickens poop everywhere and dig up flower beds. Roosters flog people.
I will learn how to make cutzoo soup, because that's what grows here in abundance. I hope nothing ever happens I am very fond of the grocery store.



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 12:46 AM
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Originally posted by anumohi
YES! learn to grow mushrooms in your closet, basement,cave.
that way you will always have a simple food source that grows on its own.



Correct me if I'm wrong, but I've always been told that mushrooms have very little nutritional value? Maybe different mushrooms have different nutrients, I don't know. Which ones did you grow,and how did you do it?



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 12:48 AM
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always liked knowing about these


Making lye from wood ash..The hardest part was in determining if the lye was of the correct strength, as we have said. In order to learn this, the soap maker floated either a potato or an egg in the lye. If the object floated with a specified amount of its surface above the lye solution, the lye was declared fit for soap making. Most of the colonists felt that lye of the correct strength would float a potato or an egg with an area the size of a ninepence (about the size of a modern quarter) above the surface. To make a weak lye stronger, the solution could either be boiled down more or the lye solution could be poured through a new batch of ashes. To make a solution weaker, water was added...journeytoforever.org...



Soap making is a homestead skill often forgotten in discussions of colonial days. Soap was of great value in keeping the household a far better place to live and work. The manufacture of soap by the hard-working colonists from wood ashes and waste fats give testimony to early American self-sufficiency and resourcefulness. Soap, an easy item for us to obtain, was produced by boiling wood ash lye and fats together. www.alcasoft.com...



One of the foods I introduced in that article are needles from the Eastern White Pine tree (Pinus Strobus), which are high in the vitamin C you need for optimum health in the wilderness. Consuming pine needles or brewing pine needle tea is a great preventative and cure for scurvy caused by lack of vitamin C in the diet. Yet thousands of people have died of scurvy while literally surrounded by whole forests of pine trees! This illustrates the fact that knowledge and the ability to apply it is an important key to survival www.survivaltopics.com...

edit on 9-1-2011 by Rustami because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 01:01 AM
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Originally posted by frugal
In the South you can't grow potatoes, the fire ants eat them up. I can't seem to grow onions here either, the soils hard packed clay and we don't get enough rain.
If you don't have electricity anymore you can't freeze, refrigerate, or dehydrate meat. Learn how to build a smoker
building, or pack the meat in troughs of salt. This is what the pioneers did. Also one could share and trade with neighbors. Chickens require corn to eat. They grow up slow and take time to produce eggs, that is if some other creature doesn't eat them first, like the neighbor's dog. Free ranging chickens poop everywhere and dig up flower beds. Roosters flog people.
I will learn how to make cutzoo soup, because that's what grows here in abundance. I hope nothing ever happens I am very fond of the grocery store.


Interesting, I didn't know that about ants. I wonder if there's something you could do about them? What type of farming do they do in your area?
I do have a smoker, but I've never made jerky with it and don't know exactly where to start. I'll try to figure it out his summer.
Chickens can be a pain, and I actually never liked them. Something about their beady little eyes bugs me! However, I did grow up having chickens and while we did feed them, in the summer they did pretty well out in the pasture jsut fending for themselves.Of course,if you live in a city or town,that's not an option. One thing you can do is go to a seed cleaning plant or grain elevator and get screenings. This is basically a mix of different mixed grains that they get when switching from one type of grain to another and can often be had really cheap. Not sure if this is available in all places, but might be worth checking out. They do poop everywhere, but I guess you have to make a few sacrifices for survival!
I love the grocery store too, and hope it never goes away. I don't think it likely that we'll ever need these skills to actually survive, but maybe someday it'll be handy to know these things.



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 09:17 AM
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It's not really a survival tip, more of a suburban homesteader tip: diatomaceous earth.

I could not understand why my bean seedlings and other young plants were dying. Last year they seemed to do so well! Then I learned that pillbugs, earwigs, and slugs were eating them before they could even break through the soil.

Diatomacous earth is a natural way to combat these pests without toxifying your soil. Available at a good garden center, diatomacous earth is a powder made up of fossilized remains of diatoms, a type of hard-shelled algae. It is naturally occurring; mined from the earth.

Apparently the tiny diatoms are sharp edged and finely abrasive. The microscopic pieces wedge themselves like little knives into the exoskeletons of insects and they cut into slugs, deterring/killing them.

If I had known about it sooner, I could have saved an entire crop of beans, cucumbers, and squash, not to mention a few ornamentals.



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 10:10 AM
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Buy the book "Survive!" by Les Stroud from the t.v series Survivor Man on Discovery Channel

Has tidbits on all you would need to know if you we're to be in a spot and in need of help....



posted on Jan, 9 2011 @ 11:29 AM
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reply to post by OuttaHere
 


yepski good post and reminder, this stuff is great for alota things, use near daily and fairly inexpensive when bought as @25-50lb bags from a feed store in 100% natural food grade/codex (NOT the pool filter kind), originally got a name for being used with horses for internal parastites I believe as well as chickens for controlling flies through their manure by mixing in a something like a 5% ratio by weight to feed if remember correctly but have got the most use against fleas by sprinkling on/working in pets, carpets and yard (though leaves a dust initially and mask is a must wherever) leaves trace minerals too


Diatomacious Earth (often referred to as "DE") is an off white talc-like powder that is the fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton. When sprinkled on a bug that has an exoskeleton (such as bed bugs, ants or fleas) it gets caught between their little exoskeleton joints. As they move, the diatomaceous earth acts like razor blades and cuts them up. But it doesn't hurt mammals. We can eat it. We do eat it! It's in lots of grain based foods because lots of grains are stored with diatomaceous earth to keep the bugs from eating the grain! www.richsoil.com...


another great product that can be bought in bulk fairly inexpensivly depending on type (like bamboo) and not much out there better for purifying water DIY beyond boiling and chlorination


Water that has been disinfected may still be polluted with contaminants that are not affected by the disinfection treatment.In some cases, additional contaminants may actually be added to the water during the disinfection process. For instance, the process of chlorination nearly always adds some disinfection byproducts.

Granular Activated Carbon is a highly porous material; therefore, it has an extremely high surface area for contaminant adsorption. One reference mentions "The equivalent surface area of 1 pound of GAC ranges from 60 to 150 acres (over 3 football fields)."

edit on 9-1-2011 by Rustami because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 10 2011 @ 03:30 PM
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Survival is a releative term, and what may work for some may not work for others. For example i can grow my own food but others may not be able to. Personally my safest bet is roaming the local woods and stealing peoples bug out bags, I would also probably steal large ammounts of food from farmers. Im a better thief than a survivalist and i have waaaay more practical experience than 90 percent of self proclaimed "survivalists" out there.
edit on 10-1-2011 by Kayzar because: (no reason given)

edit on 10-1-2011 by Kayzar because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 10 2011 @ 08:33 PM
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reply to post by Kayzar
 


Thievery is likely to end in misery,and rightly so. You are stealing things others have worked hard to get,and are relying on to survive. Sooner or later you will be caught doing this,and retribution will likley be swift and brutal. Maybe your good,but there's always someone better. Luck runs out eventually,and the more often you rely on it the sooner it'll come back to bite you.



posted on Jan, 10 2011 @ 08:42 PM
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It is hard to grow anything! I have kept a garden for the past 4 years....basic veggies..tomatos, peppers, carrots and onions..and I live in the midwest US...some years have been better than others(I think I need more manure)...but I think you have to find what is "growable for your region". People that think they will throw some seeds down and have a harvest are fooling themselves. Its a skill to grow food!



posted on Jan, 10 2011 @ 09:53 PM
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True enough, I live in Alberta and with our weather you don't get much of a growing season. Still, potatoes ddo well,as well as cucumbers,corn,peppers and such. I found that I can start my plants indoors quite early and give them a good headstart.
Also,another good tip is to construct simple greenhouses. I've used thin PVC pipe to make hoops,over which I put clear plastic. Bury the edges in the dirt and it stays put pretty good, and it protects the plants from frost and helps them grow faster.
You can also take 2L pop bottles,cut the bottom off and put them over your small plants. This gives each one it's own little greenhouse,and by the time they outgrow the bottle they are well on their way.
Another easy tip is to put black plastic(like a garbage bag) over a maound of dirt. Bury the edges,and poke a hole in the middle. Plant your seed or small plant in the hole, and the plastic will help warm the dirt as well as keeping weeds at bay. You can buy the plastic on a roll and do whole rows at a time this way. Makes a dramatic difference on some plants like watermelons,pumpkins etc that like heat.



posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 06:55 AM
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Learn how to sharpen a knife is always a good one to learn, failing that I'd recommend learning to create fire.
I don't have any that I can tell you apart from grab as many survival books as you can.



posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 07:11 AM
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This is one I heard a few weeks ago. If someone pulls a knife on you and you have nothing to defend yourself with, use your belt (if you're wearing one) and whip it, whip it good. Get a belt with a nice solid buckle. If no belt, run forrest, run.



posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 10:30 AM
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Originally posted by sbc650mike
This is one I heard a few weeks ago. If someone pulls a knife on you and you have nothing to defend yourself with, use your belt (if you're wearing one) and whip it, whip it good. Get a belt with a nice solid buckle. If no belt, run forrest, run.


"Hang on a sec mr. criminal,whilst I pull my belt out of my trousers. ooops my trousers have fallen down,please wait whilst I bend over and pull them up".

Sorry had to say it, what kind of talk is that? no crim worth his burbury cap is going to wait while you drag your belt through the hoops.
Best to run away or failing that just yell like aloony and get people looking at you and the situation, the crim would probably think " this ones a nutter, best leave alone" or run off all embarassed.?



posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 02:05 PM
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some more stuff I've personally use/d or a variation of with great results


Copper and silver have been used for centuries to sanitize water. Copper is a well know algicide and silver is a powerful bactericide. In the ancient Greek civilization, the royalty used to drink from silver goblets and their water was stored in silver urns in order to purify their drinking water. As the pioneer settlers moved west across the American continent, they insured safe drinking water by putting silver coins in their barrels of water and milk.

In the 1960's, NASA developed an electrolytic silver ionizer to purify the astronauts drinking water for use on the Apollo missions. Today silver is used in medications for treatment of burn patients to prevent infections, for newborns to prevent blindness, to make bacteria free cosmetics, in drinking water filters, and for filling cavities in teeth to help prevent further decay. Copper based algicides have long been used in swimming pools, fountains, lakes and ponds to safely control algae problems. www.carefreeclearwater.com...



Ancient peoples used water vessels made of silver to keep the water free of bacteria. Powdered silver was used in treating wounds. Silver compounds were used in treating diseases such as syphilis and gonorrhea, for ulcers, for blood purification, for heart conditions and eye diseases. Silver coins were often added to milk or water to keep them pure on the long trek out West during pioneer days in America. Silver preparations and colloidal silver were used extensively in the United States before WWII, but with the advent of antibiotics, silver use was largely discontinued. www.ehow.com...



“Honey provides a moist healing environment yet prevents bacterial growth even when wounds are heavily infected,” notes Dr. Peter Molan of the Honey Research Unit at the University of Waikato, New Zealand. “It is a very effective means of quickly rendering heavily infected wounds sterile, without the side effects of antibiotics, and it is even effective against antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria.” www.motherearthnews.com...


have read some negatives using for this reason by some peoples online but as for me and various other family members- allergy free using different LOCAL (only) kinds for many years now


As one who makes his living by writing about allergies and asthma I am often asked about the potential health benefits of using local honey.

Honey contains bits and pieces of pollen and honey, and as an immune system booster, it is quite powerful. I have often in talks and articles, and in my books, advocated using local honey. www.carlislehoney.com...


as miraculous to me and some family as the local honey except in regards to illnesses and has many other uses as well, though recommend studying up due to some types being dangerous or even fatal if not used properly


Documents in Europe record that during the 15th century, when the plague killed millions of people, there were bandits (Thieves) who stole gold teeth and jewelry, and other valuables from the dead as they lay in the streets, AND that these same bandits were miraculously untouched by the plague.

A trap was laid, and the Thieves were apprehended. In exchange for more lenient punishment, they told the King and Officials that they used a formula of herbs, spices, and aromatic oils to protect themselves. This formula included Cinnamon, Clove, Lemon and Rosemary. www.the-thieves-oil.com...


and of course a favorite multiple times daily survival tool available in many options thats accepted by tongues worldwide for ages now and can hold up to just about any kind of fire


Dude.. Didn't you read.. These are SLOW moving old school zombies. You are WAY over armed. Mobility is much more handy than being weighed down with a ton of weapons.. my big cast iron frying pan ought to do the trick. Hell, it's an available weapon in left for dead 2 and those are the new and improved high speed zombies. www.stangnet.com...


edit on 11-1-2011 by Rustami because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 04:04 PM
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Originally posted by xxclaro
reply to post by Kayzar
 


Thievery is likely to end in misery,and rightly so. You are stealing things others have worked hard to get,and are relying on to survive. Sooner or later you will be caught doing this,and retribution will likley be swift and brutal. Maybe your good,but there's always someone better. Luck runs out eventually,and the more often you rely on it the sooner it'll come back to bite you.


lol yeah right. I have been a thief for 30 years now, how long have you been living alone in the wild? Yeah, im not affraid of some noob in my forset. I didn't even tell you how i would do it, and yes i would get caught almost everytime that is how my system works. All i need is something warm and whiskey to calm the shakes.



posted on Jan, 11 2011 @ 08:21 PM
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You live alone in the wild? How are you posting on this forum? Got a news flash for ya-society is soft and complacent right now, because things are relativley good. If we ever get a real SHTF situation,people are gonna be a lot more vigilant,as well as much less likely to overlook your thieving ways.
If you steal a car today, you might go to jail for a little bit, more likely get some community service. Go back about 125 years or so and steal someone's horse and guess what happens? You'll get a hangin' more than likely. That's because stealing someone's horse back than was serious business,and could put the persons survival in danger due to the horse being their main mode of transportation. If we get into dire straits, people will put much more value on the things they are relying on to survive, and a little whiskey is not going to get you off the hook.



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