Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Boris's stand.

This has been an eventful weekend, and at least some of what got done is what we were aiming to get done. One of our two seedling trays has been started, and I'm really happy about that. The reason I haven't gotten the second one started yet is because I don't have enough things that need started yet! I mean, I could start amaranth inside, and probably will start some in the second tray, but I realized we are basically out of tomato seeds after I failed to properly save tomato seeds last year. Yay for toddler sleep induced haze! 

That said, there are other things we got work done on, and things that happened that were a huge surprise.

The big thing that happened is a fox attack. With the turkeys around for some time, we'd been safe since they are a major deterrent to any predator. With the remaining turkey on walkabout, we are down to Boris for protection. Boris though proved his worth, though as you can see Left he isn't doing very well as a result. We lost one hen. Of course, we lost our most beautiful hen with the red laced feathers. That said, we only lost one hen which is something of a surprise with a fox that will usually come back for as many as they can get. We are guessing that the fox hit the hen in the middle of the back yard, and on the way out, Boris hit the fox near the barn while it was carrying the hen off. Boris definitely came out worse for the wear, and we don't know how the fox is doing. I do know when I fist picked up Boris he had blood to the legs coating his spurs. He also didn't have any of his own blood on him.
He is however fairly badly injured, and we don't know just how much so. For one, his left flank under his wing looks like a plucked chicken. The feathers must have been ripped out with force, and he has a couple scratches on him. No bite marks that we can find on him, and a bite would probably have killed him by now. He got hit on Saturday, and the first day we didn't think he'd make it at all.  He couldn't stand, or even sit straight, and could barely move to eat and drink. Yesterday Sunday he still couldn't stand or even take a step, and was having tremors in his leg, but was eating and drinking. Through out both of those days there was a hen cuddled up to his side all day which was a surprise to us. Usually birds will avoid an injured member of the flock to not attract predators. Yesterday he was feeling well enough to move around a bit, he's limited to step, step, fall though. We're not sure he'll ever walk normally again, but he's earned the best care we can give him. I hope he pulls through because he's very gentle with us and the kid, and apparently absolutely fearless against the fox!
The other and much more uplifting thing we did this weekend beyond nursing a badly injured rooster is work on the terracing on the front garden. We had some credit at Sears thanks to some great customer service from them, so I went and got a bunch of gardening, digging, and cutting tools. One of my favorites of this set of new purchases is the mattock. A relatively inexpensive tool, it is precisely the right tool for what I'm doing, which is breaking up hard soil with rocks in it to move around. If I'd had one of these before I'd have far more already usable garden soil, but now that I do have it working on the terracing is a lot easier for me. Honestly it probably isn't really a valuable tool for most gardeners, but in our hard, rocky soil it has been a major step up.  It is going to completely change my timeline for terracing the main slope beds where I'm eliminating the walk between paths, and is going to make digging up the nasty thorn bushes I'm tired of. Expect to see a lot of digging pictures soon! With a kid around to help now, they're more colorful than they had been in the past.


  1. Go Boris! We're rooting for you!

    1. Thank you for the good wishes for him. He's been staggering around a bit today, still trying to be where he can see his hens.