Monday, August 29, 2022

And Then There Were 8

This will be short. 

We lost Fluffy on Friday and it was my fault.  
I brought the girls in from their free range time, saw that Fluff was dawdling, went on with getting the rest of the flock in.  Then forgot to check on her.  We think one of the dogs got her.

Kicking myself...

As I have posted in the past, some of the girls have striking personalities and Fluffy was one.  Because she was a chatty cathy.  If there was a tale to tell, she was up to the task.

She was one of the four I adopted from the Michigan Humane Society a few years ago.  She and Marigold (also one of the four) have been roosting on top of the yellow door and now Mar roosts alone.

I'm missing the little girl.
I'm so sorry Fluff.  

Monday, August 22, 2022

Bumblefoot or Leg Mites

Well, here's the deal.  
I don't check chicken feet on a regular basis.  Maybe I've learned my lesson.
I just happened to glance down at Marigold's little footsies a little over a week ago and said, crap.

She had what I thought to be bumblefoot, a staph infection.  About 10 days ago we started treating her:
15 minute epsom salt soak
antibiotic spray
after a couple of days added Prid drawing salve, then changed to vaseline

Every day until the following Thursday, at which point I picked the brain of my naturopathic doctor who used to own chickens.  I explained I wasn't sure her condition could be leg mites, which of course requires a different treatment.  After a thorough discussion we came up with the new protocol instituted three days ago:
15 minute epsom salt/soapy soak
Prid (sometimes adding antibiotic spray)

Warning: icky feet alert

See the bumps (indicating bumblefoot) and then there are the raised scaly areas probably indicating mites.

stock photo chicken feet
although my chicken's feet are not quite so pristine 

Anyway, through comparison you can see Marigold's abnormal ickies.

It's a slow improvement but Rick and I both see better looking feet on the girl.  Believe me, it's a two-person job to soak, swab, and wrap.

The first day of treatment Marigold said what the heck is on my feet.

She continues to hate each aspect of the treatment but is slightly more compliant.

Then I noticed Gabby was limping.  Except it was subtle enough I wasn't sure.  Felt her legs for heat.  Nope.  Felt her foot for heat.  Nope.  Picked out her teeny hoof.  Aha, a pebble.  Perhaps a stone bruise?  A little bute for pain relief, now we wait for improvement. 
Cross your fingers and toes.

Last time we spoke I neglected to show you the jim dandy wasp nest at the donkey gazebo. Neither Rick nor I noticed the darn thing until it was a house large enough for all the in-laws.  So, we've taken the "if we leave you alone, you'll leave us alone" approach.  It's been over two weeks and so far so good.

No more upsets for the moment.

Monday, August 8, 2022

Chickens Just Gotta Have Fun

 I know you've been asking yourself, what the heck do your crazy clucks do to have fun.
The answer -- play in poop.  Donkey poop.

Pegs illustrates only too well what all the girls do during morning chores.  Play in poop.

Fun thing #2
Attack any and all treats like the little dinosaurs they are.

The bottom cup made the girls swoon -- bananas, their all-time favorite, and frozen bleubs.
(three crazy donks got the other cup)

Fun thing #3
Luxurious dust baths

I hated to catch the moment through the fence but time was of the essence. 

Fun thing #4
Scratching in the dirt for goodies

Fun thing #5
Scaring me to death

One of these days I'll surprise one of the girls during a sprawled-out-in-the-dirt nap.  The first time I saw Sweet Pea snoozing like this I was certain she was dead.

* * * * * * Just Say Yes * * * * * *

A few days ago I whomped up a loaf of vegan blueberry bread, which just means I used non-dairy milk and no eggs.  Not only is this recipe tasty, but is forgiving.  After I had mixed all ingredients correctly I realized my 1/4 cup of oil was sitting on the counter.  Out of the loaf pan and back into the mixing bowl.  Didn't appear to bother the bread at all.  Which explains the less than pretty presentation.

Let me add one note.  The first time I made the bread I thought after adding the one cup of blueberries, that's not enough, we need more!  No, no, no.  Didn't work at all.  Keep it to one cup.   

Monday, August 1, 2022

A Little of This, A Little of That

 It's dry dry dry here.  
The pasture is mostly brown grass so the donks just go out to nibble what they can and walk around.  

In the morning they get a brief walkabout just outside the donkey yard (it's still brown grass but different brown grass), though I have to keep an eye on them while doing chores as they like to eat my lovely flowers -- you can see Stella is up on a chair as I will not let them nibble her!

The chickens don't seem to be as affected by the dry conditions.  It doesn't stop their morning explorations.

Nor does it affect their odd egg laying habits -- their preference for one nesting box over another is a mystery to me.

Because the cherry tomatoes are watered daily they are growing and growing.  

I started using an Earth Box last year as we had awful luck with tomatoes in the ground or in giant pots.  My guess is our puny harvests were related to having the garden so close to the woods, but that's just a layman's guess.  Anyway the Earth Box is g-r-e-a-t.

Turning away from chonkeys, we visited a local art gallery over the weekend with a special exhibit, Flight".  I could have watched this all afternoon.

 Clouds at the tippy top with gold cranes hanging off the rotating wire circles.  I simply loved it.