Update with Pictures

It’s over 90 degrees here. The bees are so hot they’re bearding across the front and sides of their hive, and reaching to the back. One hive is strong–the other I don’t think will make it to winter, let alone through winter.

I was proud of how well our garden was growing until I saw a picture of a friend’s garden. A few months ago I gave them some pepper plants that are now heavy with peppers; our own are wilting and the leaves falling from the bottoms. I’m not sure why, but some 6 of the bell pepper plants are dying, the rest struggling.

Still, life goes on and things grow. Continue reading

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Incubating Eggs – Round 1

Warning: Behind the cut are pictures of cracked open eggs–some simply scrambled, some with development. If that bothers you, please don’t click, or find a way to hide the pictures. There is a picture of cute baby chicks at the very end of this post.

If you remember, back in June I got some hatching eggs and an incubator at the Maryland Poultry Swap. And so started my new adventure and new addiction.

The problem is, those 9 eggs I picked up at the swap were anywhere from 10 to 17 days old when I set them. If you know anything about hatching eggs, that is incredibly bad for fertility. I got an additional 15 eggs from another local breeder that were roughly 4-5 days old at setting, so while not ideal, they improved my hatching odds. Continue reading

20th Post: New Additions!

I have a few posts pending, one especially on hatching eggs, but what’s more appropriate for a 20th “benchmark” post than some pictures of the newest additions?

These are my 9 wheaten/blue wheaten ameraucana chicks. I had 9 out of the 24 eggs I bought hatch, but more on that in my hatching post (later today??). One had pretty severe splayed leg, but after two short stints in a bandaid, he seems to have recovered splendidly and I can just barely pick him out. This was when they were new-new, only just barely fluffed out. These are my July 4 babies. I will only be keeping hens from this batch–so if you’re local to Maryland and will need wheaten/blue wheaten ameraucanas, contact me in a few weeks!

Meet Evie (Evelyn), a Silver Fox doe we picked up on Saturday from Skyview Acres. I will be getting another doe and a buck from them come October, but didn’t want to try and have 3 rabbits (and kits) for someone to take care of after and during the wedding. Picking up one was probably excess, but I love her already. She’s very timid (as rabbits tend to be), but she was the only one I was able to pick up. I tried about 5 other does, some so high-strung I didn’t want to get near them. She’s sweet, calm, but just very afraid. I’ll be getting her pedigree soon, but she is 8-12 weeks old. She will be ready to breed just in time for the wedding to be over when I get the next two rabbits–so it will be perfect timing.

She’s currently being housed in a dog crate elevated in our carport until we put the finishing touches on her permanent home. She was pastured her whole life, and so I’ve been giving her plenty of greens and hay to supplement the feed, and we are starting barley fodder for her and the chickens. We were in a bind Saturday night and put her in with some pine shavings used in the chicken coops, and on Sunday when I raked up some straw/hay to throw in instead, she immediately calmed down–she knows what her element is.

More on Evie and the chicks later!

Chicken Math

Do you know what chicken math is? I wasn’t sure at first, either. How can one kind of math be different than another?

So I went to the trusty thing known at the internet, and it explained it to me: Chicken math is just the natural order of how many chickens a person may originally want, and how many they end up with. What looks like 2 chickens may turn out to be 1, 0, or 15.

Sometimes it’s a disease and sometimes it’s nature. You decide: Continue reading