Saturday, April 30, 2011

Maxine's Big Adventure

Maxine is without a doubt the most interesting chicken we have. Since her first day here she has proved herself to be beautiful, belligerent, and a bad influence on the other hens. She escapes, she flies, she is next to impossible to catch, she is tiny, and generally meanspirited. She absolutely hates to be touched. But she looks like Wild thing so of course we took her.

a few days ago Maxine completely vanished, VANISHED. Without a trace. I searched our property, the property next door and the graveyard, not a feather. We assumed that an eagle or hawk had snatched her. Then last night who should wander up to the house but an absolutely soaked and mud caked Maxine. I didn't think it was possible for any animal to be that dirty! The mud was in clods hanging from every feather.

So I gave my chicken a bath.

Halfway through Darkmirror came in and started taking pictures.

She was docile and just sat there and let me coax the mud from her feathers.
It was even matted into the downy feathers near the skin.

what do you do with a clean but still wet and shivering chicken?
I blew dry her.

Again, she just sat there relaxed, allowing me to work.

While I dried her I continued looking for injuries, one scabby spot on a wing.
several broken and damaged tail feathers.

She doesn't look as magnificent as she once did, but she's clean.
I hoped this new docile a sweet chicken I was holding was a sign that she truly appreciated me.
Once she was dry she tried to peck Nature Girl's eyes out and started squawking..

We'll never know what exactly happened to her.  But our imaginations are running wild.

Oh well.
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Friday, April 29, 2011

The Day the Ducklings Made Their Great Escape

Our ducklings have more than doubled in size since we got them last Friday. I heard a furious peeping this morning and thought the cat or one of the dogs was after them and ran down to find they had jumped out of the giant bench sized rubbermaid bin we were using as a brooder box, and had crossed the sunporch and come inside. The dogs were cowering, getting harrassed by the four of them. I called my farmboys and we captured them and went to put them back in the box.

Well I found out why they came to find me. Their furious peeping was saying "MAMA!!!! We have emptied our waterer into our bin to make a lake of water, food and feces. We have tired of it. Come! Give us fresh bedding and MORE water BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!"

They had clearly outgrown the bin and we do not have their outside duckhouse ready yet. I got out Little Bear's big labrador retriever dog crate and set it up with a raised plastic bin lid as an island. Hopefully they can keep this one from becoming a swamp in an hour.
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Monday, April 25, 2011

simply ten good things

with gratitude to Soulemama for the idea.

Wooden lego and plastic minifigs
A girl who loves chickens
Fresh eggs from our own hens every day
A rabbit preparing to kindle
Little boys who love ducklings
Dawn break sounds of birds,  both wild and domestic.
A garden awakening from under it's mulch winter quilt
Garden plans in their infancy in peat pots in every south facing window.
Easter baskets full of books, art supplies and seeds - abundant fertile imaginings
17 degrees and sunny - a break between rainstorms, joyfully filled with mucking out hutches, feeding animals and farm kid chores.