Tuesday, August 20, 2013

More and more fresh foods even as the mornings get darker.

A cool mid September morning, seeing our breath as we do rabbit chores, and things are normal. Aside from the fact it's mid August. I'm enjoying the really pleasant weather, but it is a bit of a strange weather pattern going on around here right now. The rabbits love it, but they won't if it continues to go on the seasons at this same rate by early October when our next litter is planned.

A quick digression, the runt Left I have decided is the bunny of disapproval. I'm not sure what it disapproves of given the abundance of delicious food it gets, but so be it, the bunny of disapproval disapproves of the sound of the click. I was trying out my replacement cell phone as the camera for today, and I'm not entirely displeased with the quality. Definitely not up to the standards of the Lady of the House, but it's good to know the level of improv we can do! Back to bunnies though, the combined litter is still doing well, and are growing at a very normal rate from what I can tell. We've given up on doing weight checks for this set litters now that we're beyond the point that day to day weight drops are a major concern. We have enough else going on in our lives that another 10 minutes a morning is a real time savings.  We are going to be starting the next round of breedings on Thursday doing Dawn and Twilight Thursday, and Halley and Comet on Friday. That will put the last litter for the season somewhere around the 21st and 22nd of September which (in theory) shouldn't be killing cold for the babies in decent nests. I'm hoping to have another improved breeder hutch up before then, maybe two depending on my life schedule. It is entirely possible with other complications that I won't have any new ones done by then in which case, tarps over the hutch roofs is the order of the day.
We are still in awe of the remarkable results of Twilight's small litter with all three of the babies just huge. Every single one is bigger than the biggest rabbit in the other two litters, and monster kit is still gigantic even in comparison. The white kit is Monster kit, and it is exactly 4 weeks old standing next to Twilight weighing in around 15 lbs. We've done an initial check and we Think monster kit is female. If so we are going to probably grow it out for breeding next year just to see what it produces. If it's male, unfortunately we don't need any more studs, especially not white. One of the problems with exceptional kits is we do have the tendency to not want to butcher them, so try to find ways to make sure we don't have to. But we do have to be disciplined about things, and if there isn't any call for the white kit, the white kit will HAVE to be killed. Once we make one exception it gets easier to make more and we need to not go down that road. We're a farm, not a retirement community for animals we like, well, unless they're rescue rats.

So, the phone camera doesn't do well with chicken photos. They move too fast for the poor thing to cope with. The chickens are doing well, and have firmly transitioned to adult noises. They are relatively friendly, curious, and meander the property when ever we let them out. They readily go back to their coop at evening though which makes our lives easier not having to round them up. The Lady of the House has started doing something interesting, she has been making chicken feather earrings. I'll have to get a photo of them to put here on the blog for some shameless advertising. Many of the best feathers came from Sergeant Above who is one of our prettiest chickens. We are hoping we will get Some eggs before it gets to be winter and they drop down to barely laying. If that's what happens then we get eggs in the spring, but we are excited for our own eggs!
Last but not least, the garden is doing well and tomatoes are being eaten off the plants daily now. It's hard to tell, but our pepper plants are doing really well. The plant Right is heavy with little green peppers that I can't wait to try. We need to figure out exactly when they are ready to cut off the plant, and will want to be harvesting at the same time as tomatoes so we can make more fresh salsa. We made, well, the Lady of the House made our first fresh ingredients salsa last week and I loved it. She was a little disappointed that it was too spicy for her, so this next one we will be experimenting a bit with the kick factor. I've never had really fresh salsa before, and it is really wonderful. It's been a bit of a rough summer, but getting to eat our own food from our own garden is exciting in a new way for me. I'll try to explain how it is different from eating our rabbit at some point because the words aren't coming to me today. That'll be it for today, more Thursday!

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