One place we found is working out. It’s a horse farm, and we have started the process of taking their pile. OF COURSE, this is a transition year, so we didn’t have any equipment ready. They let us borrow a horse trailer. We went out there with 2 muck tubs and 2 shovels and started working on the pile.
Spoiler alert: It turns out you don’t get too far that way.
Still, look at all these worms—this is fantastic!
For the second load, they used a loader to get it on there, so we only had to shovel it OFF the trailer this time. Still, if you have ever seen the business end of a shovel it may not surprise you to learn that we were inspired to buy a beautiful, old dump truck!!
…Singing choir of cherubs,
I will try to post the epic saga of buying the truck soon, but in the meantime, I can’t WAIT for load number three!!!
Ok, so have you ever read that picture book Tacky the Penguin? There are all these perfect penguins and then there’s this one penguin who is doing his own thing and is kind of an oddball.
It’s a very sweet book.
I would like to introduce you to Tacky the Eagle:
The kids call this chicken “Eagle” and it was their favorite chick—they held it a bunch. The whole flock is pretty friendly—puppy chickens, really. Still, Eagle is special.
Eagle is funky because she is a leader—will try new things sooner than the other birds—but also is pretty low on the pecking order. Pretty much all day you can see the chickens doing the poultry equivalent of throwing their hands up in the air and saying, “Tacky!!!”
When a person enter the coop, Eagle makes baby noises and checks them out.
The other day as I was walking in with one of their food bowls she decided to go to the top roost and fly into the bowl. I can’t decide if it was diabolical or accidental, but the others gave a cheer.
Newest trick: Eagle is working on her status in the flock by roosting a little higher:
Tacky is an odd bird, but she’s a good bird to have around.
Yesterday evening the weather was wild. The wind came up and then it *pounded* rain. The kids and I were on the far side of town and I felt anxious for the chickens in their new coops, so we headed home & checked on them. The tarp had blown around and messed up part of the roof (but only busted the hog-rings not the wire, so it should be fine, we’ll have it good as new in no time).
The chickens were wet and huddled and scolded me because THINGS WERE VERY STRESSFUL AND THERE WAS A SITUATION!!! until I got the tarp back in place at which point it was like flipping a switch and the chickens collectively relaxed and were like oh, time to eat, yeah, no bigs.
So then I came and checked on the box chickens (they got that name because they are waiting for their coop to be made by hanging out in a rectangular chicken tractor that gives them access to new ground every day and protects them from predators but which also looks like a box). The box chickens had wet heads and were actively getting rained on, but were also like, time to eat. So I felt relieved and actually ended up taking care of a few things and heading back to town.
On the way home from town the sunset was so pretty that my son took a video of it, but even that didn’t help it register to me that I needed to have put those chickens to bed!
(Note: During the day, we keep the door open and they forage in the yard inside a loop of portable [solar!] electric fencing to keep predators out. At night we shut them in the box since chickens are so vulnerable when they’re sleeping. This was their first night in the box.)
When I got back and looked in the box, there were 8 of 31 birds.
That meant some chickens were in the trees.
It took me an hour to find/get all the chickens safe. Nice team-building exercise for me and the birds. I did set an alarm on my phone to put the chickens to bed a touch earlier for the next night. Goodnight chickens.