Thursday, July 2, 2015

Notes From Around The Farm

Summer has been comfortable here, and both the pigeons and chickens get to roam free every day:

The neighbors have been getting all my eggs and one day, their dozen included these two miniature eggs, aberrations which I figured their three little boys would find fascinating. I certainly would have loved them when I was a kid:

 The two boldest pigeons so far this summer have been the pair of this spring's babies. Their window has been open as long as they've had feathers, so they consider going outside to be normal:

The neighbors' heifer had her first calf, and it was so big that they had to call in an Amish man to help them pull it out of her. Then she refused to let it nurse:

So they milked Mom by hand, feeding it to her baby - who, as you can see, became very tame:

 But by the next day, Mom's maternal instincts had kicked in and all was well:

I worked on clearing the weeds from under the electric fence, which gave me an opportunity to view them close up. These were Bedstraw and Cow Vetch:

And these 5-6' tall, monstrous Burdock will illustrate the weed problem on the fence line. They were pushing against the wires, shorting out the fence:

A peaceful scene, with a young fantail pigeon and the cows in the background:

The chickens cover a lot of ground and seem to keep down the bug population while fertilizing the lawn:

Judging by the blossoms, it looked like we were going to have a bumper apple crop. But when summer arrived, the ground became littered with baby apples. I now suspect that there won't be much fruit making it to maturity after all:

My Barred Rock bantams roam free all day long during the summer, but I want them to go back inside the barn about dinnertime so that I can eat dinner and go to bed. I solved the problem by installing a pigeon trap with hanging aluminum bobs, It allows them to go into the barn but not back out. I can then herd any reluctant hens toward the door with a leaf rake. They've come to know when it's time for them to go inside and it becomes easier every day. View this full screen to see the trap door better:

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