Thursday, October 30, 2008
Guess what? I am meeting Nelishia, Dirk, and Katie tomorrow evening at a Trick or Treat thingie in Cartersville! Neat huh? :)
The first thing to do is isolate. I have extra cages just for this purpose. Its not like the chicken feels like running around, they just want to rest. I packed one of the cages with fresh hay and made up a dish of water with antibiotics and and a vitamin, mineral, and electrolyte supplement. I also give VetRX through an eye dropper or syringe, straight in the mouth and I rub the comb and wattles with it too. It has camphor in it so it helps to clear the congestion. Clyde have to give up both his heat lamps...one to the barred rock and another to a cochin pullet.
Yep, I found one of my black giant cochin pullets feeling a bit blah. Nothing I could put my finger on, she just didn't have a lot of get up and go. I held her a while and cuddled her, gently scratching the back of her head as she closed her eyes and relaxed. I made up a sick cage for her, same deal. I also switch a sick chickens feed to the highest protien chick starter I can find, without any animal parts being included. I only buy ruminent free chicken food. Dumor has a 24 percent that I find great to use. I always keep a bag, even if I don't have chicks at that time.
It was getting late evening and the sun was going down fast. A neighbor friend stopped by on his way home from work. I had promised him I would come for a visit and see all his flock and time has just gotten away from me. I told him I hadn't forgotten the invitation. Things just get busy around here and time slips by. He had mentioned wanting some of the guinea keets when they were older and asked if he could still have some. He has three hens that he doesnt like, buff orpingtons, he says they are kind of dumb. I am thinking I can talk him out of those three in trade for some of the guineas. They would be nice to add to the layers as they are at a prime age for laying...around a year old now. I promised to catch him some and bring them by on Sunday so hopefully I will come back with three new recruits. They will have to be quarantined for a couple of weeks to make sure they are not sick or going to give my chickens anything bad and then I will introduce them to the flock. They should fit in pretty easily.
After he left I was wandering about waiting on dark to close up the pens and saw poor Bubba. Japanese Silver Phoenix roosters are not generally aggressive. They get along with each other very well and are not hard on the girls. One of my two silkie/polish cross roosters got it in his head right before dark night before last that he needed to beat up Bubba and was chasing him all over the yard. Bubbas comb had a small piece taken out of it and he was bleeding. He stopped and hid his head, putting it on the other side of the gate to protect his head. I picked him up and that darn other rooster hopped up on top of a pen to challenge him even as I was holding Bubba. I pointed a finger at the naughty boy and told him to calm down. Well he decided to challenge ME. If you are a rooster of mine, you learn FAST not to challenge me. You will get your lights punched out. This may seem harsh, but you have to be firm with hard headed young roosters or they will hurt you one day. I punched him in the side and he went squawking off like I had killed him. Night fell and all was quiet.
Usually an episode like this is forgotten and life goes on in the yard. Not so this time. That bad rooster had beat up Bubba bad this time and I hadn't been around to save him this time. His comb was bloody. He had dried blood that had pooled down under his eye and his pretty white feathers around his neck were stiff with blood. Oh I felt so bad. I immediately scooped him up and tried to get some of the dried blood off but it was just no use. I knew he was sore and I didnt want to aggravate it so I just opted to slather his head with antibiotic ointment that included a pain reliever in it. I made up yet another sick bay so he could come in where it was warm and sleep peacefully and comfortably overnight. Fresh water and the chick starter were on the menu this morning. I have locked up the offending rooster in solitary. Bubba can go back out in a few days when he has rested up.
In the meantime I am running short on heat lamps and so Clyde is in a big carrier in the house (yes that is my kitchen table, I live in a zoo) and is happy and content to stay indoors. We don't ever eat at the table anyway. ;) We always eat off of tv trays in the living room.
So that is what is happening around here. Thank goodness it is going to warm up some today. Highs in the mid to upper 60s and the weekend in the lower 70s. I am SO looking forward to it.
Ian will be off for four days in a row so I probably won't be online again until Tuesday. We have plans to work on that flower bed now that the neighbor with his tractor has helped finish pulling up those bushes. I will be selling birds on Saturday and catching guineas Saturday night. Sunday I will fit in visiting the neighbors and exchanging birds.
I hope everyone has a great weekend. I sure am going to try. Trick or Treat and Happy Halloween to you all!
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Its sunny here in Northwest Georgia, but there is still a chill in the air. Will you folks up north please turn down the wind machine up there?
The emus have decided their bed is going to be by the stairs off of the screen porch, behind the row of pens. Which is fine. I would rather have them up close to the house anyway. Now I just have to figure out how to make them some sort of shelter back there without disrupting the area too much. I don't want to run them off. They have been laying there until the grass is gone and all that remains is dirt, which is mud when it rains, and so that won't do. I laid down half a bale of hay in their spot the other evening. They really appreciated it. Ian said they seemed much more relaxed and happy. I watched them bed down last night and they did seem comfortable. It won't be long and they will have that mashed down and I will be adding the other half of that bale. I am going to try to construct something for them before we have rain again. I should have time over the weekend. I was going to build them a shelter out by the fence, but I bet if I did, they would still be laying down for the night right where they are now. Thats how animals are, I have learned that.
I have to many boys. It is a fact. Too many boys means stressed out hens and picked on docile roosters I keep. Goatman has retreated to the pen almost all of the time because the other white crested polish boys have decided to become a part of the pretties flock. They pick on him, so rather than be picked on he isolates himself. I can't blame him. Yesterday something happened, and although it shouldnt surprise me when things like this happen, it still does indeed surprise me. Before I get too far off track I want to say I will be remedying that problem on Saturday morning. Tractor Supply Company is having a deal in their parking lot where you can bring your chickens, goats, horses, tack, whatever..to sell. I am taking at least three of the six white crested polish roos. Goatman stays, and maybe Mullet. There is one other that is docile. He looks terrible but doesnt seem to be aggressive, so he can stay. I am also going to take that big huge yellow chicken that was a freebie when I bought the chicks. It has turned out to be a HE, and HE is of no use to me and is already terrorizing my layers..so he has to go. I don't like to get rid of anyone, but sometimes you just have to for the flocks overall happiness. I do hope they will sell and go to good homes. At least with the Polish I know even if there are Mexicans there looking to buy dinner they won't bother with them as they are not meaty chickens at all. The yellow rooster however...might not be so lucky. I reserve the option to sell to who I want. I intend on putting signs up on their cages as to what breed they are, how old they are, and what temperament, and put NOT FOR FOOD on there too. Hey, they are my chickens, and if they don't like it, they don't have to buy them. I CAN pen them if worst comes to worst and I need to isolate them from the flock to keep the peace.
Back to my surprise I got. Let me see if I can paint an image. The waterer was empty so I had the hose over the fence and was sitting in one of those metal fold out chairs. I keep those here and there out in the yard because often I will find myself stopping and just sitting, being, with my animals. I would sit on the ground but the fire ants would get me. Goatman was in the pen on the roost watching. I knew he probably hadnt had enough food or water so I put some food on the ground in the pen and shut the pen to curious onlookers. He got down and was able to eat in peace despite the dirty looks he was recieving from outside the pen from gawkers wanting some of what he had. While he ate I scrubbed out the waterer and filled it. Closing it up and turning it right side up everyone was eager and ready to take a drink of fresh water. Goatman was still eating. When most everyone had had a good drink and was wandering off I opened the pen door and Goatman came out right away ready for a drink. I was sitting directly in front of the feeder with just a foot between me and the waterer. He came right in that spot in between my legs to drink. Now that was not what was so surprising. Anytime one of those white crested polish boys tried to get near him he got nervous, I could tell. So I began pointed a finger out at the ones getting too close and making them go on. He relaxed a bit knowing I would keep them away and kept drinking. At some point one scared him anyway, getting too close and he turned and hopped up onto my leg! I have not handled these birds a lot, just sat and spent time with them. He seemed perfectly comfortable to hop up onto the safety of my leg. I talked to him and comforted him by picking him up and holding him against me. His legs and feet were cold so I cradled them in my hands to warm him up. He didnt seem to mind a bit, and I think he liked it, no I know he liked it. He has made his way into my heart just as easy as that. Don't ever let anyone tell you that a chicken is dumb or doesn't have feelings. They know who will protect them. They are sometimes content, sometimes afraid. Some are as loyal as a dog. Some are standoffish as a cat..but let me tell you, they are far from not having any feelings. I was blessed with the ability to see this in all animals. Something that not everyone can see. I guess they know that too judging from Goatmans behavior.
Goatman will go back to being top white crested polish after Saturday, and I know he will be happy about that.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
If you can't see the slideshow try clicking on View All Images below where it says its loading and hopefully it will take you to the slideshow.
Wednesday was shopping day for food for the animals and for the humans. Then Thursday I had to go pick up the birthday cake I had ordered for Shelby and Tiffany. Friday we met Karen (Tiffanys mom) and Tiffany at the Georgia Aquarium. It was crowded with people, even on a weekday but we still managed to have fun. There were so many things to take pictures of but a lot of them you werent allowed to use a flash and the lighting was too low in the tank so I wasnt able to take good pictures of those displays. If the lighting was good in the tank it was better to not use the flash.
I won't bore you with all the types of fish they had. If you want to look for yourself I bet they have it all on the Georgia Aquarium site. Some of the highlights for me were the beluga whales, the whale sharks and the huge community tank. Most will ask how they keep all those different species together without them eating each other. The answer during the speech they give was...it happens, but very rarely...because they are VERY VERY well fed.
Did you know that a sawfish is in fact not a shark...but a ray? I didnt know that.
Friday was still a good day to go to the aquarium. It was raining and windy and cold. Good weather to be indoors. Saturday it cleared off and we went to the haunted trail on Vinson Mountain that the volunteer fire department puts on every year. It was even better than last year. I don't know why, but this time Shelby was hesitant in going in. Last year we went to it no problem. This time, after we paid and were walking up to get into line she was hemming and hawwing and was scared to go. We convinced her that we would never take her to somewhere where she was going to get hurt and that this was going to be fun. Finally we got into line and once we got in there it was fun.
Here is a funny part, lol. Shelby seems to think she should already have a boyfriend. I dont think so..and her Daddy says not til she is 30..lol, but anyway, we said maybe we would find her a boyfriend at the trail, joking of course. When we got to the part in the trail where we stepped into Micheal Myers 'house' he came up on us and startled us, did a really great job and I said "Oh Shelby, look, we found you a boyfriend!" Evidently they ran with that because in the next section there was a mad looking clown that came up behind us and asked which one was SHELBY...and got right up on her...lol, it was a lot of fun. Its always like that, your scared to do something, but once you do it, usually you are like a little kid and say, LETS DO IT AGAIN! There was one boy in front of us. He looked about 11 years old and he was pulling his moms arm off and crying so bad.
One thing they should have done. When the guide said a clown was coming up...I thought of Pennywise the clown, you know in IT, by Stephen King...now THAT would have been cool to run up on THAT clown and for him to say..."We all float down here!!!" SCARY STUFF! ;)
So I am loading pictures, and I have a video of the girls blowing out their candles. For those that don't know, Tiffany and Shelby have been friends since they were about three years old. We used to live next door to each other. They are only six days apart and both just had their birthdays so we decided to celebrate them together. :)
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Here is a picture of all my pretties settling down for the night in their roosting pen. Full house...I expect building is in my future for bigger digs.
Here you can see inside the grow pen. The peafowl have much more room now and seem very happy with their new accomodations. You may be wondering why those two poles have red striping on them. Well, I tend to save everything. Most things I find a use for and it saves money to do so. These two poles used to be the jump poles on two jumps I made for Tip when we were doing dog agility. They make a perfect prop to make a tent out of the tarp and netting so when it rains the water will not catch in the tarp and weigh down the top of the pen. The white roost you see going across is a long wooden curtain rod I used to have curtains hanging on in the old house. It has ridges on it and is a perfect roost with grip for their feet. I must admit I would be excited to have a fancy barn and such, but that costs a lot of money and right now its just not an option. My animals do stay warm and dry with heat lamps and good shelters. We did look at the amish built barns at the fair. They are so nice and we have one in particular that we really love, but it has to wait until we have the money.
Above are some close ups of the peafowl. It is easy to tell the boy from the two girls now. Can you see the difference? The ones with less barring on their feathers are the girls, the one on the far right is the boy, Emerald. Moonstone will have to be grown before we can really know for sure if he/she is a boy or a girl. With no coloring it makes it harder to tell. Can you make out the greenish tint on Emeralds neck?
Here is a picture of the row of pens I covered. The front will be covered when it is cold at night and during the day. The only time the front will get peeled back is if the sun is shining and its above 50 degrees during the day.
Lisa already knows this young cats story. I emailed her asking why she keeps sending me cats...lol. She says she promises she hasnt, but she can't be sure of what the cats in the cat house have been doing. ;)
Now we have a cat. Remember Mocha..the little tiny kitten that had a really scary start to life here. She is fine, she is great in fact. We love her very much. About a month ago this one showed up. I figured it must belong to someone in the surrounding area. It looked fed and didnt have any fleas or earmites. So I did what your supposed to do to get a cat or dog to go on back home. I didn't feed it. Still it hung around. Two weeks later it was evident it didnt have a home. When I went to feed the animals it would eat the chicken food, reluctantly. It had also lost weight as I could tell by feeling. Well thats a fine how do ya do. Another drop off I suppose. So I fed HER, yes I checked. She ate ravenously.
The original idea was to raise Mocha and have her be an outdoor cat and keep the mice under control. Now, it seems we HAVE an outdoor cat already. I haven't seen any mice lately, so maybe she is a success story.
Being a lady cat we must get her fixed right away. There is an affordable spay and neuter they offer through Tractor Supply Company. I don't know if its actually them, but they keep a flyer out on the counters for affordable shots and such.
SO now I have two cats. I guess I will have cats again huh. LOL.
They aren't so bad as long as they are outside. Now, we already have a name for this cat. We keep calling her 'The Other One'. So, her name is now TOO. Lisa says thats pretty original. I have to agree.
This is my second post for the day, so don't miss the bush being pulled up below!
Oh yeah, I almost forgot to mention. The reason I thought the time change was this coming weekend is because that is what it says on my calendar...so I just took it as when it was. Now I know I have more time! So that is not bad news, that is GOOD news! :)
Monday, October 20, 2008
Here is a picture I took this evening of Troy (on the right) and Eddie (on the left) munching on their supper...bermuda hay. They seem to like it more than the pellet goat food.
Thats right...just six more days and the time changes. What will I do with my time once its dark at 6:30? I guess I will find out soon enough. Even after the time changes it continues to get darker earlier and then you turn around and its dark at 6 o'clock.
In the meantime I will keep on preparing for winter around here. There is always something else to do. Just when I think its all done, I remember I have more plans. My next big project will be to take the rest of the 2 x 4s that are left leaning against the back fence and make a sturdy shelter for the emus to get into on the cold nights ahead. Emus originate from Australia. Its really HOT there. They may have come from there originally but I don't think they like the hot weather as much as the cooler weather. Even so we have some pretty cold weather come through here and I want them to have shelter against it.
Today was a little easier than yesterday. I had school to teach and Shelby had school to do so that took up part of our day. Yep I got the planner done for the week this morning too. Along with a study sheet for Science this week. While doing school I am running about cleaning up the house and folding clothes. (See the mound of folded clothes laying on my bed? No? Trust me, they are there.) After school and the house cleaning I took a quick trip up to the post office to mail a Netflix movie and my pill prescriptions off. Home again I decided to spend the rest of the evening communing with the animals and scrubbing the remaining four waterers I didnt get to yesterday before dark.
The goats...goats never learn. The spaces in the hogwire I used for their penned area are just big enough for them to put their heads through and then get stuck because their horns prevent them from pulling back through. Eddie used to do this constantly. He finally stopped and now Troy has decided to start doing it. I refuse to cut the wire because then they might actually be able to get their bodies stuck in the cut space. I stretch the wire this way and that and finally I am able to get the goats chin pushed through and the rest of the head follows. I am so tired of this. Especially first thing in the morning before I have had my coffee. SO, I have been wiring chicken wire to the outside of their fence. Why the outside? Because those clever little devils will use that wire as leverage to get a foothold and be over that fence, I just know it. In some ways they are so smart, and in others, just so so dumb. Once again I ran out of daylight and out of wire to attach the chicken wire, so I called it a day. Now I am just waiting on 9 o'clock to watch Heroes.
Ian has been clearing out the large flowerbed by the side of the house. Clearing it of ugly box hedges. Those things just filled up the bed and it already looks better now that he has pulled three up. We don't have a big tractor so he is using the most powerful thing we have to pull them up...my Dodge Ram SRT10. Now thats POWER! ;) Here is a video I took of him pulling up one this evening.
Well I lied. I thought it would be uploaded onto Youtube by now, but it turns out they are doing maintenance and its loading really slow..so I will just have to save that one for tomorrow mornings post.
I do have more pictures, but it seems in the evening traffic is heavy and slows Youtube and Flickr down a LOT, and Heroes will be on in three minutes, so I will be back in the morning. Night night y'all.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Good Sunday afternoon y'all. I am sitting here relaxing today for awhile. I think I deserve it after working so hard yesterday. I got quite a bit done, yes I sure did. There is always more to do than can be done, especially in one day, but I did manage to do a pretty good bit.
The first order of business was to get everyone fed early so that I could work in peace. With that out of the way I toted all the heavy duty tarps I have been collecting from the weekly trips to Walmart outside. It is too expensive to buy them all at once so I buy one a week or maybe one every two weeks. These are the silver ones, not those flimsy blue ones. They have to be thick and strong to withstand the wind and weather that is to come soon.
The winds were out of the west and very strong all day so you can imagine how hard it was to work with the tarps. I managed though. I got the whole row of five pens covered nice and very neat looking. The ends need to be covered, but I will get to that. I recovered the grow pen which was a JOB in itself with the winds so strong. Once I got it covered I got fresh chick starter and fresh water in the peachicks dishes. I went over to the 'barn' and got all four peachicks from the pen they were housed in. They are just growing so fast and needed more space. I put them all in a carrier instead of trying to haul them by hand back and forth to the pen. I put the whole carrier inside the grow pen with the door to the carrier open so they could come out and explore their new and bigger pen at their leisure. It took a little while but eventually they came out. They were actually quite excited about thier new pen. They hopped and flapped, caught air under their wings and lifted easily off their feet. This should keep them through winter. If not I can always make it bigger without too much problem.
After I had finished the row of pens and the peafowl pen I set to covering the Sultans pen. This was getting to be hard work as I was really fighting the wind now. It was hard to place the eyelets of the tarp where they needed to be and strap them down. I got the top, backside and one side covered with the last 9 x 12 tarp. Now I am out except for small pieces left over from last year. Most pieces are not any good and they need to be thrown away because they have shredded badly on the edges or have holes ripped in them in places where the wind beat them against the chicken wire last year, rubbing holes.
I guess I come off as a mean old woman. There are some neighbors behind us that are just ignorant. I don't mean stupid, I mean they are the kind of people that really just don't know any better, and arent really willing to change their ignorance from what I can see. These are the neighbors we have always had trouble with in the DOG department. Always whatever DOG they happen to have, running loose, scouting the perimeter of my fence to try and get in, stealing my shoes, sticking its head through the wire barking at the emus and horse. This is the one that tore all the feathers out of Petes rear you may remember. Poor Pete still hasnt got much to speak of back there. Anyway, there were three kids running along the back of the fence, which is in fact the neighbors property. The smallest boy was yelling at the emus, screaming GIT OUTTA HERE and GO ON. Of course the emus don't scare like that, so it was no harm done. This boy was about five. There was also an older boy maybe about 9, then a girl, maybe about 11. I started to walk to the back fence and when I got within earshot I asked them if they would like to feed the emus (as opposed to screaming at them). The two oldest were very enthusiastic and were like YEAH YEAH! So I told them to stay right there and I would be right back. The emus love bread, it is a big treat for them. I had bought two big french loaves off the bread clearance rack at Walmart for 90 cents each for them so I took it out to the kids. They fed them and asked questions and I answered them just about as fast as they could ask them. The girl told me that her uncle said not to bother our animals as we might not like it and get mad. I told her that was not true. I told her as long as I am out here with them that they are welcome to look at them anytime and pet them if they come up to them. I told them all that as long as they are always nice and kind to my animals I don't mind at all. So I am sure they went back to the house and told him how they got to feed the emus. I am not a terrible neighbor. I just want my neighbors to be responsible dog owners.
As you can probably tell by now I didn't have the time to take pictures yesterday. It took me all day just to do what I did and then as it was getting dark I did manage to fill a few waterers. The time change is really going to affect my outside time, and its coming up in just seven days. Thats right. Next Sunday it will be time to turn back the clocks an hour.
My sister never did come over yesterday. I thought she may be too tired to be running here and there after being gone a week to Paris. I was right. It didnt help that her flight was delayed and she wasnt home until Saturday. Home, yeah, thats a tale in its own. Her 'home' is about to change, or so she says. We will see how that pans out. I thought she was supposed to be at her new 'home' straight back from Paris. What do I know.
Its finally warm outside so I am going to wish you all a good rest of your weekend and I am going to enjoy the rest of the day of cool temperatures and sunshine. I do have some preparations to make for tonight. It is going to dip into the 30s here and I need to put up a few heat lamps for my little ones so they don't get too cold and die. Phoenix and Clyde will have the comfort of indoors tonight. I will bring them inside, as will Sasha the screaming banshee of a cockateil. Heat lamps on the peachicks, and on the serama, and one for Rusty and Rudy too.
I havent even touched the laundry, dishes, house, or school planning for next week, but I will get to it, I always do. :)
I will see if I can't take some pictures, you should see those peachicks, they arent really chicks anymore.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Spent all morning catching up with most everybody. Now its time to go outside for the day. Everyone have a nice Saturday! :) Maybe I will have some new pictures for tomorrow morning from today.
Friday, October 17, 2008
So, what is everyone planning on doing this weekend? My younger sister is coming back from a trip to Paris, France with pictures and video to show. She is supposed to come by on Saturday. I will be busy outside, but we can still visit. Saturday is a busy day for me. I have to stock fresh water and food for everyone, clean out waterers and feeders. This weekend will be extra busy though as I will be starting to cover pens with heavy duty tarp. I will cover the tops, sides and back side. The fronts will stay open until it gets really cold and I need to add heat lamps. Once winter settles in the only time I uncover the front is if its going to be sunny and at least in the fifties.
Sunday I hope Shelby and I can get upstairs and do some cleaning. Next Friday is her birthday and her friend Tiffany and her mother, and my friend too, Karen..will be coming for the weekend. We are all going to be going out to eat and to the Georgia aquarium for both the girls birthday. They are only six days apart, both turning fourteen.
Ian had some news about work. They will be going back on 8 hour shifts, five days a week, Monday through Friday. The plant will be shut down on weekends. This always seems like a good idea to the higher ups in the company, but it never works. You see, Ian works in maintenance. The best time for maintenance to be there is when the machines are not running, but no, they will be shut down on the weekends. No one will be there. Pretty soon there will be whining and crying about machines breaking and no one to fix them. By January and February the plant will go back on continuous operation. This happens every year. They try to cut corners and save a buck only to have everyone come back in and work like crazy to catch up and end up paying them overtime anyway. This all is supposed to start November.
In the meantime we will tighten our belts and stay home. No visits to Mama and Daddys. None to his Dad and Christis. We will just have to watch our money. I hate it, but its only for a couple of months and we will be fine. We arent going to the poor house or anything. Just have to watch our spending and be careful. We havent been out to eat in a while now, but won't be going our for a while longer for sure now. Looks like we will be watching a lot of Netflix movies, but thats okay, we love our Netflix.
So thats my weekend. Sounds boring I know, but I do enjoy being outside taking care of my animals. It takes all day sometimes, just because I stop and watch, pick someone up here and there and love on them. Talk to them. I get sidetracked easily, but I enjoy it. Its time to get the peachicks out to the grow pen also. They are growing so fast. :)
Emus, Derby, and Tip running out there in the back.
A few of the guinea keets on top of the goat house.
Tip making sure the Sultans don't 'get away' lol
This big boy is a Giant Cochin. His name was Beast.
This is Beauty with Beast.
This breed of chicken is especially mild mannered and very sweet. Its like holding a big old stuffed animal. So it is especially hard for me when I find one of my buddies passed on. Early on Beast died. The breeder I got the pair from is very reputable, but says with these big birds sometimes they just die suddenly. Quite possibly heart attack. I was very upset when Beast died. It was a stroke of luck when I went to a small poultry show in Calhoun a few months later to find my friends and breeders of these birds there, with trailer in tow of birds for sale. I purchased Buckbuck and Babe, the last picture above. It was perfect. I now had a trio. I had an excellent breeding season this past Spring. I got ten healthy giant cochin babies from them, the first of which had actually come out of Beast and Beauty before he died. So much has been going on, I haven't had time to stop and talk about this.
I am sad to say I lost Beauty last week. She hadn't seemed herself for a couple of days. She was still eating and drinking, walking around fine. But she would put herself up in their pen to roost for the night too early. At least an hour before dark. That third day I found her in the pen passed on. I can't say what caused it, I just don't know. Buckbuck and Babe are still doing fine. I have a closed flock so it was nothing I could have brought into the yard. I was very disheartened over this. I do intend on buying Buckbuck two more females at the show in February. The folks that breed these beautiful birds help head up this huge show in Newnan. I can't begin to express to you how wonderful this breed is. They don't fight and fuss with each other and they will follow you like a puppy would. They are just so sweet.
Thank goodness I got a good hatch out of my breeders before she passed on. She will be missed terribly.
I guess the rain and gloomy weather has me meloncholy today and that is why I was able to sit down and take this time to talk about Beauty.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
What a beautiful morning we are having here. The emus were feeling frisky this morning. This is how an emu plays. Usually my video is clearer than this from my camera, I don't know why it is the way it is here.
I am feeling better today. No fever, which helps a lot. The congestion is still pretty prevalent. I have coughing fits from time to time, but they are productive if you know what I mean. Shelby still has some congestion too. My sister Patti says she just got over this very thing and it took two weeks to run its course. Sounds about right since its been a week for Shelby and its still looking like days before its really gone completely.
Oprah's show yesterday was mild compared to the things that really go on behind closed doors. The veal was about right as far as the conditions they are kept in, I have seen that squaller. I fumed when listening to that woman and that man opposing the Prop2 in California were trying to make excuses. There is no excuse, and they are wrong to try and make any point at all that it is right to keep animals in such confined spaces. It was absolutely silly for that man to say that salmonella bacteria was LESS in the caged set up than in free range. How stupid does he think we are?
I know for a fact that chickens make just a nice a pet as any cat or dog. My sweet boy Phoenix is the prime example. He loves me, and not for food I bring him. He will come to me, dance for me, hop up on me and loves to be rubbed under the wings and scratched on the back of his neck. If he had his way he would be with me all day. I need to take some updated video of him being his sweet self anyway. I will have to get right on that. I have changed a lot of minds of my readers about chickens. I haven't shown much or said much about it lately, but maybe I should for new readers.
I had mentioned that I was working on a double wide pen for my pretty Sultan boys and girls. It is time to get them out of the summer pens and get ready for winter. Wintertime here can be brutal with strong cold winds sweeping across here. We are surrounded by crop fields so there is nothing to break the wind. The pens have to be strong and heavy. I will be covering most of them this weekend on the sides and back, leaving the front open til it is actually cold weather.
There are two pictures of the finished pen at the top of this entry. I can't seem to figure out how to put them in the entry where I want them and not at the top. Going to try a slideshow now.
Still learning the lay of the land here...he he..I just figured it out, but will just leave those two at the top.
The slideshow doesnt seem to want to load. If it doesnt load for you just click on view all images and it should take you to the Photobucket site. This is frustrating learning how to make this stuff work right.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
This link up above takes you to Oprah Winfreys site, and what is being talked about on todays show. Before I start, I want to say this. I am not ranting, but rather frustrated. Once this show is aired, if it shows the TRUTH there will be BIG attention paid to the subject. I am VERY glad of this. The thing that frustrates me is that it hasnt been addressed as aggressively as I HOPE it will be after todays show. You can go on Youtube and bring up some horrific nightmarish videos on the way farm animals are treated. I have discussed this and put a couple of those videos on an entry in my previous entries. It IS hard to look at. You may ask yourself WHY would anyone want to watch this. Because it invokes people to DO something about it. I hand out fliers and leave them on grocery store eggs anonymously when I get the chance. The flier tells the REAL story, along with some sad pictures. They are called battery hens and live out their lives in madness to produce eggs. Some people don't care, and don't want to know. For those that do care, PLEASE watch Oprah today. If you didn't know what went on before, hopefully you will after today.
I eat meat. I love a good rack of ribs as much as the next person. I love hamburgers and bbq sandwiches. I just want the animal that provided this food to have lived a good life before, and was killed humanely. I am not saying become a vegetarian or a vegan. I am saying have some respect for the animals while they are alive for goodness sake. There is no reason for chickens to be crowded into tiny cages, smashed together in a darkened dank foul chicken house to put out eggs in madness til they are spent and then thrown into our Campbells chicken soup once they are no good to egg producers anymore. Cattle are put into a big roller machine that turns their heads upside down so their throat is exposed. Their throats are sliced wide open and their trachea ripped out by the workers very hand that sliced it open. Then they are dumped out onto the floor to bleed to death, sometimes actually able to get up and walk off before dying. There are SO many other things I have seen and know about, not just farm animals, but things in other countries that pale in comparison to what we do to our farmed animals. Horrors you cannot begin to imagine. It makes me sick that humans can be so uncaring and vile.
I want cattle, pigs, chickens, all farmed animals to be able to graze on grass and feel the sunshine, to have fresh drinking water. To be able to walk around, lie under a tree, take a dust bath, do the things that animals like to do naturally. The reason that these things are not common is because it is not cost effective for these large corporations.
I do try to buy meat I know is really free range. Being the chicken capitol of the world it isnt hard to find locally grown chicken here. I also have contacts for pastured beef. It is not impossible to find and is affordable.
I will watch Oprah today, I hope you will too and enlighten yourself. If all you do is tell one other person, and that person tells another, and so on, eventually change will happen for these animals that deserve more from us.
Read this article and look at the ways to go green...the sites on the internet like Seedsavers and Localharvest are great places to start.
Monday, October 13, 2008
It is one thing to be sick, but it is another to be sick, and have to tend 2 pigs, over a hundred chickens, a horse, peachicks, dog, cat, 3 emus and 2 goats. Shelby still tended her three rabbits, even though she felt poorly herself.
I spent the whole weekend, exhausted and feeling like death warmed over, dragging myself from pen to pen with feed buckets and the hose. Did you know a hose can actually feel like it weighs a thousand pounds when dragging it? Well it can. Not to mention the feed bucket felt like a ton. It doesnt help when you are being hounded by three emus the whole time. They are very in tune with differences. For instance, when you feel like death, and you decide not to bun your hair up before going out to feed, you get your hair pulled three directions at once by three curious emus that don't know what to make of that long stuff coming out of my head. Soon they discover its not edible and move on.
Today I woke up discovering if I move around too much I start hacking and coughing until I possibly gag or lose my breath. Have you ever done that? Started a coughing fit and it slowly sucked out all the air in your lungs and you can't breath in til you are done wheezing? Scary stuff. So I am trying to sit still. Eventually though, I will have to go outside again and feed. The peachicks need fresh water and the Sultan boys need fresh water in their pen. Got to do that.
So its one thing to just be sick and be able to lay around til you feel better. Most people have to let the dog out, or feed the cat. Not here. Here its still a full days schedule. They don't care if I am sick, when they are hungry and thirsty, all they know is I am supposed to be there for them. I am, always will be. I can still sit here at the computer and whine though. Its my right.
I consider myself pretty strong when it comes to a lot of things, but when I get sick...watch out. I am the whiniest, grouchiest person you will ever meet. If you are in earshot, you will hear about every ache, every pain, and quite possibly hear me hacking and coughing to boot.
Thank goodness I went to the store early, knowing it was going to hit. That chicken noodle soup is the bomb, it really does sooth the savage beast in me. Really good stuff.
So as I sit here, I am making the rounds to visit some folks. You may have already seen me drop in today. I hope everyone is having a nice Monday and is feeling well.
Friday, October 10, 2008
I have video of these dogs working the lambs in the corral where the demonstration was. We are sure to watch this every year we go. I will post video soon, but for now, here are some fine dogs from the stock dog show. Picture number two is Bow, (like Bow wow). Picture number three is Katie. Dogs number one and four I had never met before. Chester was there too, that is our Tips brother, but I didnt get a picture of him this time. I did however get some video of him, which I will show next time along with Katie and dog number four working the lambs.