Ah, so a proper update on all things on the homestead today. There has honestly been a lot going on I haven’t spoken about much. We’ll start with a brief rabbit update.
All of Purina’s litter were sold. The last two bucks went out yesterday, one to a nice man with his old and severely stereotypical (but very sweet) Itallian grandfather, and the other to a nice lady with her kids and a million questions that I was happy to answer! (Nobody will ever find ME refusing a question or a chance to educate! Hmmph!) Each of them also took a doe with them and the white rex-cross buck was taken earlier as well. This means just two black does left, so either two beautiful black pelts or possibly even two litters completely sold! Contrary to what some people believe (because I talk about it a lot) I do not enjoy butchering animals and it makes me happy to sell a whole litter (Although each of these was really a half-litter because of our random predator issues.)
Kibbles is well on the mend. We were going to lance her cyst but she got weepy eye. We treated her with terrmycin ointment for the eye and the lump went away! We still gave her two shots of Combipen (and now I know how to give animals shots) and probiotics but the fur is growing back and she seems healthy.
The rex-cross buck was traded in for a new Doe. We’re working on a name for her! Suggestions? We’d like to keep in the pet-food theme!
With all the rabbits I’ve had this month and one cage out of order we’ve been scrambling to find places for them all. Right now Purina is in the spare cage, Iams is in the isolation cage, NewBunny is in Cinder’s old cage, the two kits are in one grow out pen, Kibbles and Nutro have swapped cages and Evo’s the only one not moved yet.
The other grow-cage is taken up by two chickens, one of which my dogs injured the other for company. Of course it was Nukka that did it, but to be fair, the bird was sticking it’s head out of the tractor at her. She ripped off a big chunk of skin. The bird may or may not yet recover, we’ll see.
They also weren’t growing as fast as expected so I have upped their fed intake. I just hope they grow up enough before they start crowing! Yikes!
We lost another chicken due to a hawk. A big one. A massive 16 inch tall monster with a nearly 3′ wing span. It ripped off a chicken’s head through the wire and was eating it. While we had a chicken dinner the loss was bad. We’ve since put tighter wire on the cage. The hawk proceeded to dive bomb my tractor for 20 minutes after removing the bird and hung-out in the trees for an hour after with a second, smaller, buddy hawk. I tried having Persy chase it off while it was on the ground but she was just confused and didn’t even come close to the bird. Next time I’m bringing out Nukka; her prey-drive and snappy reflexes might as well be good for something!
Our root garden bed has been a small failure. We discovered today that the carrots were having severely stunted growth due to packed soil as well as everything else (beets and onions) and that’s why they’ve been pushing out of the ground instead of growing deeper. We scrapped the project, pulled all the veggies, and re-worked the bed. We’re going to try for a hoop house and a fall crop instead. It’s a little late but we’ll see. If nothing else I will be making a jar of pickled beets and we discovered we really like the taste of beet tops!
My egg customer orders are coming to a close, and we have a broody hen again. This one just won’t break. We’re trying to get some hatching eggs for her to see if that snaps her into laying again. She’s been broody five times this year now. The other australorps only went broody once each. It’s worth a shot. We’re likely getting either Barred Rocks, or we’re getting Black and Copper Marans (my favorites!). We’ll see.
We also made our first meal excluivesly (except for seasonings) from my own back yard! The cherry tomatoes and jalapenos are working overtime despite their small size, and our half-dead zucchini my sister gave me is producing some monster veggies! Fry them up with some rabbit legs! Combine this with our stunted carrots, onions, some buttered, wild garlic, wilted beet tops and kale, and chopped basil… It was delicious!
Yesterday I ordered my hay for the year. We’re on our last two bales. I spend $30 less than last year which is nice. It comes in this morning so I’d best get to work… Next time I will take some pictures of my garden and chickens and show them to you all!