I hope all my blog friends had a blessed weekend ☺ We've spent the last two days with family. Its really nice to get together but I still prefer being at home. I might have to host one big Easter party next year so I don't have to leave the ole' homestead LOL! I have some stories to tell from this weekend but not today. What I do want to tell you all is that this is the FIRST EVER Easter that I didn't have to buy ANY eggs!!!!!! I hard boiled 25 eggs for the kiddos to dye. I made 12 more into deviled eggs. We had 9 with breakfast and I still have almost two dozen in the fridge ☺ I am blessed with eggs and wanted to brag share!
Remember all the hatchings that started around the full moon. Well I have 24 new babies!
CHICKEN COUNT 56!!!!!!!!
I don't think Wilma is in labor, yet! She was laying down and breathing heavy but thats about it. She's at day 150 of her pregnancy. My neighbor is gonna call me and I'll call her when our does go into labor, we are both excited and maybe between the two of us being there everything will go okay :)
On the chicken front, I think we have four new chickies. One is another Little Squirty Jr. So not wanting to lose this one to a foot happy hen. It's in the house :)
I got all the chickens shuffled around. The teenage babes are in the chicken tractor I'm working on a little run for them so it will make cleaning easier. The babies are in the shop. I think they are still shocked at the new digs. And I have three new chicks in the house. I had taken one from the nest this morning it wasn't being covered up and was being stepped on and pecked. I'm not sure if it has anything wrong with it, but it looks fine to me. Then I brought another one in to keep it company. Then I discovered the little white one. So I might take the one I brought in for company back out to the hens. I really want them to figure this mommy thing out :)
I will let you know if anything REALLY exciting happens but until then ya'll enjoy your evening!
going on around here. The weather has been dreadful and cold. It's supposed to start warming back up today. I'm ready! I hope it's the last morning I have to thaw out all the critters waterers and I'm ready for the sun! I need some vitamin D!!!
I will be shuffling chickens tomorrow. The teenage babies will move to the chicken tractor, after about a week they will get some supervised free range time with the flock. The five babies in the house will move to the big brooder in the shop until they feather out more and then will be introduced to the flock.. I am going to do some baby chick proofing in the little coop. No more eggs have hatched but with the full moon tomorrow you never know :)
No news on the goat. Supervised breeding will happen next year so I won't be guessing on a due date. She is in the very late stage of pregnancy but I have no idea when she will kid. I would have bet money on it happening before now and would have lost. Hoping the moon makes magic happen in that regard also. I'm getting weary.
I brought the chicks in. I watched her all day and she was kicking them and stepping on them. One of the problems is that shes a normal size hen and the eggs she stole and sat on are bantams. They are soo tiny and she is just too big. They seem to be doing alright, with the exception of one who looks like it has a chromosone missing like one of the chickens I hatched out not to long ago. I think it was the last one to hatch so that just goes to show you that incubating or all natural a late hatcher is not right :( Mother hen has put herself back into the nest boxes where there will be more babies hatching soon. I just hope she doesn't repeat her behavior.
Harvested my first ever asparagus MMmmmmm it was delish, sauteed in butter and garlic topped with parmesan cheese. I can't wait for the next batch to pop up.
I moved the original mommy hen and the eight chicks to a very nice chicken tractor with a heat lamp. This morning two chicks were dead, both were the cutest of the bunch one was little squirty jr. the one I was trying to protect since it fell out of the nest earlier that day. Last night I had a feeling it was going to die because I saw the mother step on it really hard. Do I take the six remaining babies and bring them in? Do I let nature take it's course and see if she can be a better mom and quit stepping on them? I have went out there several times to bring them in and just leave them. They love their mom and I love seeing them all together. I just don't want to see anymore dead babies. What should I do?
Last night I saw that one of the baby chicks looks almost identical to my deceased favorite chicken of all time Ms. Squirty. Today I find that same baby chick on the lower level of the coop chirping it's head off. Also found one baby chick had been abducted by another broody hen, she ended up getting her butt kicked. Not good! So I moved one mommy hen and all EIGHT babies to the chicken tractor which has a heat lamp in it. So far so good, the babies are running around everywhere and seem happy.
My neighbor who's goat Wilma had came for a visit in October stopped by to see if we had goat babies yet which we don't :( Anyway she hugged Lady's belly and felt the baby kick. I'm not sure if she thinks Ms. Lay is going to kid soon but I do. That girl is miserable.
I have five more broody hens sitting on who knows how many eggs. I had collected almost 20 eggs from the nests and put them in the incubator. Lord willing I will have some baby chicks for sale soon ☺ So basically I stare at baby chicks and goats all day! Envy me LOL!!!
See all the mommy's in one nest! It's ridiculous! They all told that baby to get back under them, it didn't listen and I'm glad because isn't it adorable! There is more babies under all those mamma's I can hear them I just can't see them yet ☺
I don't think I ever told you all this story. So here it is....
October 29, 2012 that white goat on the left, Wilma, wandered into my yard. At that moment we had the goats tied out in the back back yard so we could work on their pens. My goats were not liking this stranger at all, so we got them penned back up and Wilma just kinda hung out around the fence ALL day. 2am the following morning, I wake up suddenly scream to the hubs that something is wrong with the goats and here we go barrelling outside to find Wilma with her butt up against the fence and Bub screaming in tormented pain. Good Grief!!!
The next day Bub screamed and acted like a lunatic while Wilma tormented him through the fence. I stopped at the house where Wilma lives and talked to the super nice older woman who informed me, her daughter wouldn't be home until the evening so the goat would be staying in my yard until later. I posted this pic on FB and my other neighbor sent her husband over to fetch the goat and take her back to her house. I get back home from picking my little one up from school and the neighbor meets me in the driveway to tell me he got her back to her yard. I laughed because she was at my goat pen again!!!! We watched my tormented buck all day and finally by about 9 pm her owner came over and gave the okay to breed her. I wasn't too keen on this idea because I thought she was too small of a goat to be bred to a Nubian but hey, it's not my goat. Wilma is a 12 yr. old fainting goat. She has had one kid her whole life. I forget his name, it's a cute name too but anyway he's a wether and they live two houses down from me with a donkey and some chickens. You have never seen a goat more determined to get pregnant than this girl. Long story short she slept over. Bub was a little aggressive with her. I had never seen him act so rough, so by the morning Wilma was ready to go back home. I opened the pen and she left. She hasn't been back either. The other day we asked her owner if she was pregnant and she said no. I thought that's too bad because she really wanted to be. Well yesterday, Wilma's owner yelled to us that she is pregnant! She had given her a hug and felt the baby kick! I'm so happy! That old girl will get to have another baby. She is due the end of the month ☺
Who cares!!! This is the cutest thing I've seen in my entire life! I finally (at the protest of the mothers) saw the little ones peeking out from underneath one of the hens! AWWWWW it's the most beautiful thing I've seen in FOREVER! If you think broody hens are cranky, mother hens are worse! I will post pics as soon as the mamma's let me LOL!
I hear cheeping in the nest, but can't see any babies! The nest on the left had 10 eggs and one broody but now it has three broody hens. The babies won't have to worry about fitting into the flock since half the flock is in mommy mode LOL!!!!!!
Yesterday was the first day of Spring Break! When my oldest daughter was a toddler I got a baby pool and let her swim, even though it was too cold. I'm probally a bad mom for doing this but it's became tradition. When the outside temps are hot enough you want to be in the water, but the water is so cold it numbs whatever part of your body is in it. This is our teeth chattering, numb your buns off tradition. So this year, since my oldest is 16, I got a family size baby pool! We set it up yesterday I called it the Oasis, but it's more like a hillbilly vacation! We layed out, dipped into the pool and listened to the radio. Everyone has a sunburn, so we won't be hanging out at the Oasis today but we had a great time!
Now for what not to do. My last incubation of eggs went HORRIBLE. I cannot stress enough how important the temperature and humidity control is! I thought that we were done with the sadness from that hatch but we are not. One of my chicks that has been perfectly fine for the last two weeks has curled toes and can't walk now. This is from the low temps while incubating. We made it some shoes to straighten out it's toes but it's legs are too weak to even hold itself up, it's going to die. I'm hoping none of the other ones come down with this but I won't be suprised if they do. I only have one of the two black Silkies. One didn't last two days and the other has issues we are dealing with. I won't go into all the details but look chicks over REALLY well before you get them from a feed store! So that's my PSA's for today! Have a great weekend ya'll!!!
Most of the eggs the broodys are sitting on are bantams, so that means they could start hatching as early as tomorrow. The weather is warmer than it has been the last few days so I decided to tidy up the coop a bit. I crawled through the open air bottom area and popped my head up to the next level of nests. Oh my goodness! You would have thought a tiger crawled into the coop. The SCREAMING!!!! It was soo bad I actually started to wonder if something horrible was in the coop. I looked up, behind me, on the ground, to the sides. Nada, it was just me!!!! I got the platform in front of the nests swept up and doo doo free, cleaned all the ladders, added new straw to the bottom area, and placed food and water on the platforms next to the crazy ladies nests so they can stay put until the babies get a little bigger. I'm not as anxious as I am with incubating. I have confidence these girls will know what to do. I am excited to hear the little peeps from under the mamas. It will be so cute!!!!! I will post pics as soon as the first batch hatch. Have a great day ya'll!!!!
No news on the goat yet. I had miscalculated her due date by a whole month so she isn't really due for a few more days. Won't be long now!!!! Miss Piggy went to live with my husbands uncle. The minute he got her he let her run around his living room with his dogs. She stayed the first night in the house. I think we found the perfect home for her! We couldn't justify spending so much on the feed to get her grown. The hubs is going to go hunting for some pork instead of raising it. Plus we were already getting attached to the little darling, so I'm sure butchering day would have never happened. I have FOUR broody's in the little coop. They have taken over all three nests. Two are sharing a nest. Not sure the exact number of eggs they are sitting on. The one in the left nest box has 10, they are due to hatch around Thursday :) The broody in the right has 8. I'm pretty sure the two in the middle have at least 10 if not more. They shove all eggs that are laid by anyone under them, as you can see in pic 1 there are three hens (aren't they cute) and in pic 2 the egg is being confiscated! So count that up folks! It's over two dozen possible chicks GASP!!!!! My seedlings are doing great, the last picture is of the strawberries progress slow but green :) The weather here is dreadful, rainy and cold but supposed to be beautiful by mid week into the weekend. If you need me I'll be digging in the dirt LOL!
I just wanted to take a minute to thank all you ladies for taking the time out of your busy day to answer my silly questions! I really appreciate every ounce of knowledge you all share! I have soo much going on and soo much I need to get done that I won't be posting for the next few days, unless of course the blessed event happens, then I will have to share the news ☺ As of right now, the hubs loves the piglet. I think it's a little wild and do not look forward to feeding it during the day :/ but it is cute! I have three broody hens sitting on eggs. This will be a first for me and I can't wait to watch the mamas care for the chicks ☺ We are building a big run for the chickens this week. Hopefully they will adjust to limited free ranging and it should keep them safer from coyotes and foxes. Lady seems to be in a happy place licking her big belly and just laying around sleeping. The anticipation is killing me so I'm going to busy myself around here. Maybe if I quit watching the pot it will boil ☺ Enjoy the weekend y'all!!!!
I'm so glad I came inside to search what a goats private area looks like before birth! First off I was unaware that a water bag comes out first! I could just imagine my horror at seeing an empty sack!!!! I have also stumbled upon some disturbing facts. Like some does don't have milk right away. My does udder is really small compared to others I've seen. Should I get some colostrum from the feed store just in case? Is there a healthier homemade concoction? Also I read that you should assist if there is no progress within 30 minutes. Is that true? I'm hoping and praying everything goes smoothly but I'm nervous!!!!! Okay I'm going back outside to stare at my goats butt LOL!!!!
The hubs is bringing me a new baby. Not sure if we are keeping it or not yet. Will post pics and details in about an hour after he gets home and we meet the little girl!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
She's a feral pig. The hubs friend went hunting last weekend and killed the mama. She had three babies with her and gave us one. Still not sure if we are going to keep her. She had a windy trip in the back of the work truck and was upset when they got home, think Tazmanian Devil!!! I'm hoping she settles down ☺
My does getting puffier every day under her tail ☺ Her ligaments are loosening up ☺ And she is thirstier than normal, is that a sign of impending labor? I haven't heard or read that one before. Every time I give them water she dives in and doesn't come up for awhile. I'm going to take it as a sign but was just curious if any of my wise goat keeping friends had noticed the extra thirst with their does?
UPDATE~~~~~~~~~ Went to check on the goats before leaving to pick up the wee child from school. Miss Lady was sitting in a spot not normal for her. She was panting with her tongue out and yelling Ma Ma nonstop. I immediately thought she's in labor. Lets just say I lost my wits, brains, and common sense for a little while. Rushed around like a crazy person getting everything ready until I realized even the buck was in labor Ha!!! They were hot it was 77* today!!!! This false alarm made me realize that I'm going to need back up LOL!!!!!
I know in my last post I seemed ungrateful and down, but I'm really not! I have many blessings in my life and here is a picture of some of my baby chicks. The one I said was a rooster from day 1, well I'm still sticking with it! Look at the chick with the black around her eyes, isn't she beautiful! Her name is Cleo and see the white fluffy butt on the fuzzy chick under the perch. That's one of my giant Cochins and my little white Silkie is growing pretty good on the right! My gorgeous funny daughters, my hard working handsome husband, my two dogs, all my chickens, my goats, and my super loving baby bunny are just some of my many blessings! Life is good there are just some bumps along the way but I am Blessed! Have a great day ya'll!
I haven't posted in awhile.....The last hatch of chickens got me down. The one babe died and the one that wasn't right I made the call to end it's life so it wouldn't suffer forever. It killed me but I know it was the right decision. My roosters have gone completely nuts and I have to keep one seperated in a pen so there isn't blood shed every day. I also miscalculated my goats due date by a month!!! Who does that? She's showing signs that it's close though ☺ I am now waiting on the Marans to hatch. I have cried for a few days about these eggs. They are four days late :( I know my temps were low on the incubator for about the first 10 days they were in. That's what caused the eggs that were in there to be delayed and the problems with the two chicks. Anyways, I didn't let the eggs settle very long after I received them. Maybe six hours instead of the minimum of 12 that people recommend. I feel like I've screwed up again. I stayed up until almost 1am this morning googling late hatches and have decided to wait before I call it quits. I had to take out two stinky eggs, only one had a partially formed baby in it the other one was all yolk. Then today I candled them again and took out two more that were just yolk. Patience is not one of my virtues, but I will wait until I know they aren't going to hatch FOR SURE before turning off the incubator. Since I've been sad I did what most women do and went shopping, not for clothes but for chickens! I was looking for Marans but found none, so I bought 3 brown Leghorn pullets, 2 giant Cochins, and two black Silkies. Chicken count 30!!!!!