Beth: October 2009 Archives

One of my ducks is missing. We only have five ducks, and they are always together and always close to the house. John came home around 6 pm and told me that one of our Pekin ducks was missing.

I put my coat on and went out with the dogs - Buffy (the coyote slayer), Gunner and Kiki. We are indeed missing a duck. He must have been taken by surprise, as I could find no sign of struggle anywhere in the area the ducks are known to frequent.

Buffy and Gunner picked up a scent and ran down the field behind the house and into the woods on the other side of the creek. Kiki, being an elderly dog, trotted behind them and then sat down until she figured she had been gone long enough to impress me and then returned home.

In the meantime, Buffy and Gunner could be seen racing through the woods and then back across and to the field to the West of the house - where I have seen coyotes before. They were gone for at least 30 minutes before they returned.

This happened between 4 and 6 pm - prime coyote attack time, in our experience. I am going to have to start keeping watch with rifle in hand during those hours. Last autumn, John shot several coyotes during that same time period - as they started up the hill toward the fowl.

I,being my normal lazy self, brought just one of the three large pumpkins that I managed to grow up to the house. Well, I left it on the seat of the Ranger, and pretty much forgot about it. Until last night. The chickens ate it! Everything - the seeds, the rind, the stringy goopy stuff.

I wonder if the eggs they lay today should be saved and used in a pumpkin pie?

Must get back into this!

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Fall has arrived. The trees started turning last weekend. I had the Angora Goats sheared professionally a couple of weeks ago by Danny Smith. Danny makes short work of shearing the critters, and the money he charged ($50 for the 7 goats) was extremely well worthwhile. It saved me untold hours of shearing with a scissors.

For those who don't know, John's Dad, Tim Donovan, passed away rather suddenly last month. My heart is still heavy with his loss. The world changes when the last family member of a generation passes on. We miss him very much.

We are getting kind of back to normal now.

Now, for the farm news: I have failed rather spectacularly in my vegetable growing efforts this year. It rained so much that my onions and potatoes rotted in the soil, my tomatoes set fruit that never seemed to ripen and leaving for a week of studying spinning and dying and felting in July allowed the weeds to completely take over.

I improved the henhouse by adding 3 windows in it for better air circulation. The hens were not impressed and started moulting and stopped laying for a month. I'm just now starting to get some eggs again. And now I have to devise some shutters for those wire covered windows so I can close them once it starts freezing at night.

We are going to make some improvements next month. Digger Jim is going to move dirt around and build some french drains to keep water from flowing into the barn. He is also going to add two water hydrants for me - one up by where the garden in the field next to the yard is, and one that will pull water down to the lower small garden area, so if we ever have another DRY year, I can water the plants.

Jim is also going to put gravel out behind the barn, where the goats go in and out, to keep it dry -currently, it is a muddy mess. He's also going to fix the gutters and the drains on the barn. I may do some research into finding some rain barrels to divert the rain into - it might be an easier way to keep the chickens and goats watered.

Then, on the other side of the road, in our horse pasture, he is going to build a 12x36 lean-to shelter for the horses. Currently, the horses have lots of woods and stuff to get to in bad weather, and have survived just fine for two years, but with Willy growing older, I'd feel better knowing he has a sturdier shelter to keep the wind off his back.

I insisted that Digger Jim add a closet that I can store their feed in, and he had just never heard of anyone doing that - he kept saying, just keep it in a 55 gallon drum next to the shelter - I don't think he realized that Willy will break into something like that once he knows there is grain there!! I think I finally convinced him that I need a lockable door to keep that 55 gallon drum behind! If not, I will build my own 'storage locker' for the horse feed.

By the way, we are having a beautiful morning here! The sun is rising over Castle Argghhh! and the fall trees are magnificent.

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Beth in October 2009.

Beth: July 2009 is the previous archive.

Beth: November 2009 is the next archive.

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Beth in October 2009.

Beth: July 2009 is the previous archive.

Beth: November 2009 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.


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