Tuesday, October 15, 2013

At least one chicken less, lots more firewood split.

Well, we knew it was coming at some point, but we are at least one, and possibly two chickens down. The Lady of the House was home yesterday due to it being a federal holiday here in the USA (I was not because my work doesn't care). She went outside due to the chickens acting strangely and seems to have scared something off. One of the Welsummers was gone, and Sergeant is also missing, and the Lady of the House found a "chickensplosion" with feathers all over, but no blood that we could find or tracks we could follow.

So we gave in and did what we should have done a while ago, and kludged together a top cover for the run to keep the remaining 4 chickens in to prevent them from being just out and about in danger of depredation. We'll see how well the twine holding a trio of tarps works out in the long run, but we hope to replace the tarps with something better sooner rather than later. The girls were very offended that we didn't let them out the instant we came out this morning, and you can see the blur in the window that is Dora glaring at us for delaying her out time. We hope that we'll come home to at least Sergeant waiting by the run, but we're not too hopeful. If she chased something off the Lady of the House believes it's reasonable to think it was a fox. Foxes behaviorally will kill every chicken and try to stash them for bad times. Hopefully having them in the run all day will discourage it from coming back since there was no second quick meal. Right now they need all the energy they can get for as little energy as they can expend. It's why they hit livestock this time of year.

On a happier note, despite not having time for daily weight checks on the babies they are doing quite well. We had one black escapee this morning who ran like the dickens, and I had to chase it down to get it back in the hutch. I'm a little worried about that one being fearful, but we shall see. Despite that one's screaming running morning adventure, the others still came up and greeted me. I was actually somewhat surprised about that because a rabbit screaming is a very special noise that lets everything in the area know "I'm being killed! RUN!" So the fact that some of the kits came up to greet me after that is a good thing. The blue kits were very interested in the camera phone, and it has a new gnaw mark or two on it from the kits doing their thing. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get good pictures of Halley and Comet's litter because they were all huddled in a ball of black kits, though their eyes are already open and ready to move around. I think they're just a little less confident. I think Thursday is the day for the last round of breeding for the season.

Halley and Comet as well as the teenagers got box forts. It went well, though there isn't much left of either box fort after a couple days of bunny possession of them. Halley in specific will drag the box lid over to sit on to be brave. It's kind of funny to me because she is very shy usually, but with a box lid to sit on suddenly she's fairly brave and adventurous. I don't quite understand it, but if it works for her we'll try to make sure she has a box lid more of the time I guess! It looks like the two of them will likely be going to Crabapple Farm at some point so they don't have to go to freezer camp.

Last but not least, and part of why this is a short post, Saturday was a wood day. The Lady of the House's father came up to help out with bucking and splitting firewood. He ran the chainsaw cutting the trees to log length, and I swung the maul to split the wood. 4ish hours of that and a couple days later I'm still a bit sore and have been trying to be kind to my hands and arms after that. So, here's hoping we have good news on Thursday to share about Sergeant coming back. Either way, we'll be back Thursday with more on the kits, and life as winter intrudes more and more.


  1. I'm so tired it took me a bit to realize what "freezer camp" meant. Stupid 12 hour work days...

  2. I completely sympathize with that.