Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow.......

The weather outside is frightful....

Uhhh, I don't know the rest of the song but it sure fits.

Poor chickens and turkeys but the geese aren't cold, with their goose down and all but they were very happy when the snow melted a little and they could munch a little here and there.

What is that, 4-6 inches, yikes.

Very pretty, not so pretty to drive through though.


Please don't freeze my blackberries.

Puppy, the Sheltie asks "Is anyone going to to let us in??..Please??

"Where are they??? Why aren't they coming!"

"I think I see someone!!"

"Yes, there she is!! Finally! Why aren't you letting me in.....please let me in"


OUCH! We butchered 35 chickens and about 15 turkeys Saturday and my fingers were killing me. I think I cut my finger tips everytime I cut the turkeys, their revenge. I had more bandaids on my other hand but I can't take a picture with no hand so you only see one.

Our awesome Heritage Turkey that we had for Thanksgiving Dinner today. It was an older bird, maybe 18 months old. Very tasty and good, not tough at all even though it was older. Most of what we butchered were six to eight months old. I hope the customers who bought them were as happy with theirs as we were with ours.

My mom does not like turkey so I roasted one of our Cornish Cross meat chickens for her. She was very happy.
Til next time,

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Walk Through the Last Couple Weeks

Our pullets are really starting to lay, which makes me happy beyond belief, and so here are the eggs from this week. You will notice one unusually large egg from one of older hens. It is huge, bigger than the turkey eggs and almost as big as the goose eggs we had.

I hope the size shows in these pictures.

The green egg in front is one of the new pullet eggs.

The big one!

The pullet egg.

My new egg collecting basket. I love it, I got two, one to have in the barn and one to replace it with when I take them in. I just wish it was a different color.

All the smaller green eggs are pullet eggs from the eggs we hatched last spring.

Here is my little Maran hen. She is one of the new pullets we got last spring. I can't wait for them to lay. We have four of them and their eggs should be darker brown. The really good ones are chocolate brown. A month ago she was attacked by a hawk. She had two huge patches of skin missing, one on her head and another on her shoulder. She is healing up quite nicely. At first her eyelid was pulled so tight that she couldn't see out of her eye but now it is getting better. You can see the big scar on her head.

See how she is not quite right, her eyes look different, the left one is stretched flat.

It is impossible to get a good picture of a chicken. I tried though.

Here she is running away, afraid I will try to pick her up again to fuss over her.

The flock is really enjoying the pumpkins and squash that we throw in for them.

This is one of the new pullets that is laying the green eggs.
I wanted to take a picture of the pumpkins in case I decided to make calendars again this year for Christmas. I thought this would be a perfect October picture but the stupid flys would not cooperate.

I tried and...

I tried....

and I tried.....

I want to crop it and center it a little better but my computer is still acting funny, still that Buffer Overload problem. I have to do more research but it is so boring that I'm having trouble gettin' to it.

Kevin transplanted the blackberries, can't wait til the spring to see how they will do.

We are going to get more varieties, hopefully some red raspberries too, my personal favorite.

Kevin cleaned the gutters, painted the downspouts and put them back up. A week ago it was in the 60's so we took a day off work and got some things down. I touched up all the spots where we filled the holes from taking down the shutters. We're not replacing them, I'm sick of shutters, they're not real anyway. I am going to, instead, put up a wider white trim around the windows. We are replacing the windows next spring, when our ship comes in (tax return).

We chose these mission style lights for the front. No big statement just a reasonable price.

Kevin has been slowly clearing the back 40 (3 acres). He has to wait until he heals from all the Multifloral Rose scratches before he can do more.

This was all 5 to 10 foot high weeds and brush. Great for the deer population but not so good for the steer and pigs we want to pasture there next spring.

He left a few trees so there would be some shade.

Buddy and Flipper are doing a great job of clearing all the cat tails out of the pond. They love to chew them down.

I'm not sure if they are eating them but I'm sure if you can see very well but there is a bunch chewed off along the far shore and they have completely chewed all of them along the front shore.

Sorry buddy, it's Thanksgiving time!

I wrapped the side of the lean-to with a couple tarps because I wanted it to be less drafty there.
The girls love to hang out there during the day and the younger birds and some of the turkeys have been roosting there at night.

Chicken Hangout
I set up a couple 2 x 4 for them to roost on because the older birds won't let them in the chicken house at night yet. It will be better when we thin down the flock soon.
I have been finding eggs on top of the hay bales here again. They were all laying in the new nesting boxes that I built in September but then I found a few on the ground and a bunch on the bale that is in front of the blue tarp. They have been setting way up under the roofing, next to the straw.

Well, I started thinking that maybe the new hens needed more nesting boxes so I thought I'd add a second story to the new ones that I built in September.


High Rise!

This pullet stayed on the nest through my sawing, pounding, adding and screwing with the screw gun. She started complaining only once so I quieted down for a minute or two and so did she.

I knew they would need a way to get up to the second story so I built them a gang plank and a walkway.

They like it just fine. The first time I found a egg in the second story I was thrilled beyond belief. I ran and told Kevin, THEY LIKE IT! THEY LIKE IT! I think he kinda thinks I'm a dork. But you should have seen how dorky excited he was when he had nine deer surrounding him when he was hunting the night before in his deer blind. When he came in to tell me he was talking a mile a minute.
See all the eggs, they really do like it!

Just for comparison, here is a picture of the four month old meat bird that we still have. He is next to a regular hen. He's a giant and must weigh all of 12 pounds.
Til next time,
(hope it's sooner)