Friday, August 28, 2015

Photos from the Farm * 28 August 2015

Welcome to our farm!

Two wonderful things happened last Wednesday.

You started First Grade, and we had two little chicks born.

Can you see them?
Do they look like their mother?
Do they look like each other?
What's different?
Each week I'll show you a picture of them as they grow up. You can watch them change from little fuzzy chicks to adult chickens. We hope they grow up to be hens, not roosters, because hens lay eggs.

These small chickens are growing up.
They were born 19 July 2015.
They look like small chickens, not like fuzzy chicks.
How many weeks old are they?

Did you count the weeks on a calendar? If you counted 5 weeks and 5 days, you are right!

I thought you might like to see where most of the farm animals live. Next week I'll show you a map of our barn so you can see what it looks like inside.

Here are a few of the other animals that live on our farm.

This is Curly. Why do you think we named him Curly?
He is a buck, a boy goat.
There is another buck in the background, his name is Zeek.

These ducks live on our farm, too. They are not our ducks, they belong to the neighbor, but they come across the road to our farm every morning for breakfast.

They love to eat the chicken's food, and the turkey's food, so I have to chase them home every day.

Here is another animal that lives on our farm.
He doesn't live in the barn.
His name is Miles.
Miles and Matt are best friends. When Matt is gone to work, Miles sits by the back door waiting for him to come home.
I'll tell you more about Miles and the other animals on the farm every Friday when you are in school. I'm excited to show you around and tell you about all the things that happen here at Welcome Home Farm.

I hope you enjoyed this short visit! I hope you come back every Friday to see what is happening on the farm.

You can ask me questions, and I'll answer them. Your teacher will bring me your questions, and if your handwriting is neat enough that I can read it, then I will post your question here and answer it for everyone to see.

I hope you visit again next Friday! Have a great week!

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Floating Eggs

I found a nest where one of the Bantam hens had been laying.

As I picked them up they seemed very light.

I have no idea how long the eggs had been sitting there so I decided that I would float these to see if there were any good ones in the clutch.

Every single egg floated to the top of the water!
These are getting buried!
If we tried to get rid of them any other way it would be too smelly!
This is our tried and true way of checking the freshness of eggs that we aren't sure of. If the egg sits at the bottom of the container filled with water, it's probably a fresh egg.

If it floats at all we usually throw it away. If it floats like the ones in the photo, we bury them!


Monday, August 3, 2015

Mountain Sunday * 2 August 2015

South of the barn.
2 August 2015

East over the barn.
2 August 2015

North of the barn.
2 August 2015


Saturday, August 1, 2015

Cows

Remi is getting bigger! We had to get a larger halter for him. This one is a bit too big, but I'm sure it won't be long before it fits him.

We're pretty sure Echo is settled. She should calve in February.
There's something calming about tending livestock. It makes life so 'real' for me. It's such a grounding feeling to go out each morning and come in with milk and eggs.

It's pleasant to hear the cows mooing, the chicks peeping, the sheep and goats bleating, and the turkeys gobbling. It takes some effort, but I work at letting all those sounds drown out the sounds of the cars, trucks, and sirens that are blaring from the highway that is only three houses away.

It's a little bit of heaven here, and a lot of work!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Update: New Chicks

The chicks are growing! They are adorable.

The mother hen isn't too pleased when I get close, but she's not as defensive as some hens we've had. I'm guessing it's because Quin helped raise her as a chick when he was only 2.

This is a photo from 19 July. It's usually much harder to get close to a hen that has chicks!

Another photo from 19 July. I love going out to the barn and hearing their peeping!

I took a few more photos on 26 July. They are starting to get more feathers, but they are still cheeping. They aren't very hard to catch, either. Mama hen doesn't like it, but she doesn't come after me when I pick them up.

One of our sweet neighbors decided that they really didn't have time to have turkeys right now so they gave them to us. The hen has been laying eggs in the horse feeder almost every day.
Another one of my favorite sounds is listening to the turkeys gobble. These two aren't as friendly as the last batch that we had, but they are getting used to us and know we're the ones that set out the feed, so they don't run away quite as fast as they used to.
Three of our neighbors have lost birds this year. The neighbor to the south lost all four of her hens. Both neighbors across the street have lost four or more hens each. And a neighbor to the north has lost hens.

We lost one of the turkeys, two ducks, and three ducklings.

One neighbor suspects a family of raccoons is living nearby in one of the unused barns. They must not like the smell of our dogs so we haven't lost any birds (so far) that are housed inside the chicken pen, or inside the barn.

I'm hoping it stays that way!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Poor Dog!

We have no idea what happened to Scout! He came in one night with a huge wound.

It was a holiday so veterinarians took the day off. Our farm vet would have come, but she was out of town as well.

We think he may have caught himself on a fence, but we don't know where because we haven't found any fencing that would have caused this. If it had been fencing, surely the goats would have wounded themselves on it long before now!

Matt cleaned it out and trimmed the hair all around the wound. He kept it clean and bandaged until we could get him to the vet on Saturday.
I was surprised that it only cost $160 to have him stitched and stapled.
He's such a good dog that he hasn't had to wear the "cone of shame" much. He only wears it at night when we can't keep an eye on him. He is very good about leaving it alone!

I'll be posting photos of the healing process as it goes along. Bryon mixed up some antibacterial spray that he has been developing in the lab. We're pretty sure it will help it heal more quickly and that Scout won't get an infection.


Sunday, July 26, 2015

Mountain Sunday * 26 July 2015

South of the barn.
26 July 2015

East over the barn.
26 July 2015

North of the barn.
26 July 2015