Thursday, August 6, 2009

As Seen on the Farm

Here's the newest addition at the farm. That's Ron's dirty farm hand holding the baby chick, which is about two weeks old. The mother hen hatched it herself and has taken great care of it. This is a special chick, because we have not had very good luck breeding chickens. Currently, this is the only baby chick on the farm.

And I'm sorry to report that a predator got in the barn and killed some chickens recently, including the White Cochin Bantam Rooster that I mentioned here before. It was that particular rooster that mated with the white hen and produced this cute little chick.

The large barn is divided in half and very secure with chicken wire and even netting over the coop. All the chickens are locked in at night. After the loss of three chickens in one night, Ron set a trap, thinking he would catch a fox or raccoon. He were surprised to find a skunk captured in the trap the next day! He then found a place in the barn, where the skunk had been living. You don't need to know what happened to the skunk. Let's just say, it won't be a problem again.

These three turkeys (poults, young turkeys) have their own housing and pen in the back yard. Several months ago Ron was feeding the mature turkeys and he had noticed a hen and Tom kept taking turns sitting on a nest of eggs. About two months ago while feeding the turkeys, the hen raised up to show off her six little poults. This was the first time Ron had bred turkeys and didn't know to separate the poults sooner. Evidently one or more crazy Toms killed three of the poults. These are the surviving three. I'll be glad when they are old enough to join the other turkeys, as we have enough crap (no pun intended) in the back yard.

Here are five of the eight guineas we have. They fly freely in and out of the chicken coop during the day and evening, but are locked in at night. Here they are doing what they do best--searching out and eating bugs. The guinea fowl are so funny, when they run. They have short legs and move so fast that it almost looks like they are on wheels. They are also known as the "farmer's watchdog." They are very loud and obnoxious, when a stranger is around or any kind of animal, and even amateur photographers, ahem! They are always on guard and send out a loud warning anytime they are fearful, which is often! The guineas are very protective of each other and the chickens.

I was pulling weeds out of the garden this evening and came upon this baby robin. It never once moved, probably fearing the cats lurking nearby. I didn't get very close, but zoomed in instead.

Right before dark I noticed a praying mantis on this tansy plant. We love to see lots of this kind of "preying" insect, because it will eat other undesirable insects.

After all that weed pulling my back is killing me! I don't know how Ron does so much with his barnyard fowl, pets, lawn and garden. Obviously he has his heart in it more than me. Anyway, as I worked in the garden I got some great photos of more pumpkins, plus watermelons, squash, gourds, sunflowers, and the surrounding soybeans--all of which I will share soon.

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Larry Ohio said...

Your animals look terrific! I'm sorry to read about your rooster, but I'm glad you guys caught and disposed of the skunk. Hope no one got sprayed!

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Great shots!

kbnky said...

Reading your posts about country life make me want to move.

Keep 'em coming.

themom said...

Super photos John. Being a city girl - I do appreciate the "farm" pictures and tales of "the life."

Maria said...

How did you avoid getting sprayed or did you get sprayed. Although, I would like to think you caged the skunk and let him go in the woods somewhere far away, I know better. This is why I am not on a farm and why my FFA cousins used to roll their eyes at my statements.LOL

The chick is adorable and I hope he/she grows to be a handsome and productive bird.

BTW, I left a comment on the post about Glenn Beck, but it was lost somewhere in Cyberspace.

Argentum Vulgaris said...

Looks like they're on wheels (splutter) LOL


John said...

@Larry, thanks! They are terrific, but a lot of work! And nobody got sprayed by the skunk, but we won't discuss the skunk any further LOL.

@Dr.Monkey Von Monkerstein, thank you, and I'm glad you like the pics!

@kbnky,I'm glad to hear your comments! I know the farm stuff bore a lot of people, so I try not to over do it. It is a big part of my life though. Ironic though, I'm ready to move back to the big city LOL. I could put in my blog about how I got ate up by mosquitos, etc!

Seriously though, the privacy makes it all worth it. I could never do it alone though!

@themom, I'm so glad to know you appreciate all the farm stuff! We only added all the chickens, turkeys & guineas once the grandkids moved way down south a few years ago. I'd much rather have the grandkids running around than the guineas though. We originally only bought this farm in '94 so that my daughter could go to a better school! We only started really making it a farm in the last three years!

@Maria, Ron does all the caretaking of the chickens, feeding, watering, gathering eggs, etc... it's his "thing" not mine! I grew up with all that, so I'm not so in to it! I will help only when I have too! And when I photographed that white rooster and it flogged me, that was enough for me!

So about the skunk, no he didn't get sprayed, but after it killed chickens there was no empathy for the skunk. It would only be natural for it to spray anyone near it after being captured.

Oh and I'll say this (you'll appreciate it LOL) I don't want to tell tales out of school! I think that is the saying!

Of course you, like you say "know better."

@Artentum, they do look like they are on wheels! I will make a video one of these days.

**update, I will try and get my post edited...Ron corrected me, he had six turkeys hatch, not eight...and three chickens killed by the skunk, not four!

kenju said...

WOW! I'm impressed. I didn't know you had so many animals.

John said...

@kenju, oh yes we have quite a few...inside and out!

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