Sunday, March 14, 2010

This Sunday Afternoon

Keith is burning branches from the pruning of fruit trees and an old wooden fence.
For awhile, I sat near-by toasting my legs while reading "Ava's Man" by Rick Bragg - a book club book- and helped to keep an eye on the fire while Keith drove the tractor to get more fence to burn.
Then we roasted hot dogs.


Keith is still outside burning - I came in to practice my latest song on the Uke - the classic Carpenter's song - "Top of the World"
How's your Sunday going?
Cheers from the Farm!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

KIDDS!!

Friday evening Tuffy gave birth! She has two kidds.

Boy on the Left, (white & black with gray), girl on the Right(black & white)

These shots and video were taken this morning, Saturday- their first full day of Life.
It's amazing how fast animals can move about after birth.

video video

Friday, March 5, 2010

They Grow So Fast

Thursday night when I tuck the hens to bed (close their yard door and turn off the light) I saw that the Mama's had moved the chicks to the ground floor! Day two and they are out of the nest box.


These are photos from Friday Morning.

We have six chicks. I found one dead in the nest box.
They are already eating - at least they are making the motions...


The last couple of days we haven't collected eggs because all the hens layed where the Mama hens layed so I couldn't tell the "almost hatched" from the "fresh" eggs, so
I gathered them and put them in the compost - 40 eggs!
But at least I can collect eggs without worrying if the egg is fit to eat.
Good reason to have a brooder room where only the hens who are broody stay, allows no mix up with the eggs!
Isn't that beautiful compost?

Friday we moved the male goats back to the "Manger" and I cleaned out their winter stall, "Turkey Gultch" - Now just the Turkeys are there - hoping that having the goats gone they will start laying their eggs in the nest boxes.....

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Check out Valentino's Mohawk! (That one's for you A-R)

The turkeys won't be completely alone - next on the list of "Spring Cleaning the Barn" is the Rooster Room. I will move the down to "Turkey Gultch" and transform the "Rooster Room" to the "Brooder Room" Farmer Keith is going to build a new "Rooster Romper Room", but it's a little way's down the list...

Here are a couple of very short videos of the chicks on the ground with their Mama's.
The one on the right is dark but the sound is pretty good.

video video

Stay tuned for more Spring News - something just happened Friday night....

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Hatching!!

Last night when I went to put up the hens and collect the evening eggs I noticed that my two sitting hens had moved slightly. They now are sitting with a nest area between them instead of side by side. Laying in that space between the hens were 3 eggs and a empty half shell that looked very suspiciously like a hatched egg. But I saw no chicks.

This morning the hens still had the space between them but they were positioned differently - sitting higher on the tail end and one was facing me - as you can see in the photo above. But I still didn't see a chick - until...
I returned after feeding the goats and there was one sweet chick nestled in her mama's wing!

One very cool thing is that the hens purr, like a cat almost. I took a video in hopes to share the sound with you. Listen closely and I think you can hear the hens purr and the chick chirp. There could be more under those wings - It's going to be hard not to keep going up there to check - but I don't want to disturb the hens so I will restrain myself to the morning and evening checks.

Over and out on the Hatching update.

video

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

February Where For Art Thou?

Yikes the whole month of February has passed by without a single posting!
Here is an attempt to capsule what was happening on the Farm during that time.



On the Farm the change from Winter to Spring is heralded by the Turkeys marching down to our porch.

They seem to be wanting me to get hurrying with the morning feed.

"May I come in?"
"No."
"Well then, we'll just wait for you outside under the Apple Tree."
"Come a-long little Turk Turks."
Cinder wants to try out her herding skills...
"Whoa little doggie!"
All corralled, safe and sound.
Weather-wise the month was drab. The first 3 weeks were cloudy, damp, and uninspiring.
What little snow we had melted, causing the ground to be muck.

Spaetzle began to show signs of old age - she slept a lot, seemed to be hard of hearing and didn't have the spring in her steps. We took her to the vet and she basically got a clean bill of health, she had lost a couple of pounds, but her blood work came back very good. Than this last week, we thought she was dying - she didn't move for two days and only drank a little water that I brought to her in a tea cup. But on the third day she started getting up, wanting to go outside, started eating a little and almost seemed like her young self. We believe she will be with us a wee bit longer, which makes us glad, for she is such a sweetie.
Other Farm news...
Tuffy seems to be managing her pregnancy well. She is due in April (I think)
All the goats are fine and with the snow melting they get to go on walks!
Tuffy
Smiling Vanessa
Squaring off with Spaetzle
Funny Ella Mae
Girly-girl queen of the woods.
We have two hens who are broody! One hen is sitting on 15 eggs, the other has 10 beneath her. They don't seem to care who eggs they sit on, for there are all the types of eggs under them, blue, brown, tan, all are there! I believe they should be hatching this week or next - I will definitely post timely on that news.

The change in the weather allows the hens to go outside.
They love scratching in the dirt - it must be hard being cooped up for those Winter months.

Ducky loves it also!

Keith has finished pruning the fruit trees, I have greens growing in the green house, and soon Keith & I will be building more fences - we always seem to be in need of those structures. And so the Growing Season begins.

The last week of February the Sun came out and hasn't really left! We did get one pretty snow fall but really it was a gift for our visitors who's kids really wanted to play in snow. It was gone the next day, but stayed around long enough for Lucy to build a snow girl and for Jasper to throw a few snow balls.
Joey Jasper and his Papa.
Lucy and a very happy Bandida
April, a happy Mama in the Woods.

Richard, loving the pups.
You can't sit on our couches without a Pup in your lap - take it as a warning or a gift - your choice!
Spaetzle we are so happy that you are staying with us.
Now it is March and I will try to post in a more timely fashion.
Having Sun is very helpful.