Harper's Farm Blog

Turning the Dream into Reality

And It Begins… May 1, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Ducks,Farm Critters — harpersfarm @ 10:05 am

The re-homing has begun. All 12 of our newest pullets went to a new home along with six ducklings. It is amazing how fast you get attached to animals. It seems so empty outside without them. A lady came to pick up both barn cats, too. Stewey was a little more relaxed than Toby, but neither one of them was too excited to get into her truck. They are great cats and excellent mousers, and I have no doubts that once they get used to their new home, they will be just as wonderful for her.

Yesterday afternoon we dropped off the last duckling at my sister-in-law’s house.  She was taking him to a lady who had recently lost her duck, and as a result, had a heart-broken goose. Apparently the meeting went really well and the goose seems happy with his new friend. The duck’s name is now Lucky, and I think it suits him perfectly.

 

Moving Day for the Ducks April 19, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Ducks,Farm Critters — harpersfarm @ 8:19 am
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Animals have an incredible ability to show you just where your building and fencing weaknesses are. I put up a fence for the ducks while Rob was working on their house. I put one duck in, and she proceeded to walk right out. The kids caught her and back into the barn she went. I then lined the duck pen with chicken wire. So far it seems to be working. Their house turned out great. Rob built nesting boxes and a perfect little ramp. They were a little slow to figure out the ramp, but they climbed outside themselves this morning. The real test will be whether they can climb back up this evening. The pool is a huge hit. Perhaps I should have bought a bigger one, though. 🙂

 

Perfect Spring Day April 16, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Ducks,Farm Critters — harpersfarm @ 10:08 pm
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Today was such a beautiful day.  Warm.  Sunny.  Perfect.  It was errand day, so I was not able to get anything done on the farm, but we have some supplies to make the weekend productive.  First on the list, ducks.  They will be happy when they no longer have to, well, for lack of better word, “duck” once they move into their new house.  Quack.

 

Consolidation April 12, 2010

Filed under: Chicken Runs,Daily Life,Farm Critters — harpersfarm @ 11:48 am

Rob is a master at turning a 2×4 and a scrap piece of siding into a chicken house. Me, not so much. But this morning, I decided to tackle some chicken housing “issues.” We had meat chicks in the house, meat chicks in the barn and future layers in the house as well as in the barn. They were all over, and it was time to do some consolidating. So, I took a couple scraps of wood and a chunk of fencing and I made a chicken house. All 20 cornish-cross chicks had a meet-and-greet in their new home complete with heat lamp, the dogs travel crate filled with comfy pine shavings and fresh food and water. When they get a little bigger, I will be able to take the front off and they will have access to a small fenced pen.

Once they were all situated, I tackled the future layers. There were four still in the house, but they are quite a bit smaller than the original eight, so I divided the barn brooder so they can all get used to each other for a couple of weeks, and then I will take the divider down.

I am glad that Master Builder is Rob’s job, but it feels good to know that from time to time, I too, can turn a couple of wood scraps into a chicken house.

 

Adjustments April 7, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Ducks,Farm Critters,Farmer's Market — harpersfarm @ 10:12 am

“When you discover your mission, you will feel its demand. It will fill you with enthusiasm and a burning desire to get to work on it.”–W. Clement Stone

Lucky for us, there is more than one Farmer’s Market in the area. We turned in an application this morning for another market. We should know something from them within two weeks. The member fee is quite a bit higher than the other market, but it is in a good location, so hopefully (if we are accepted) we will be able to make it back. Our farm is still small and new and we are looking to gain invaluable experience.

The little ducks joined the larger ducks in the barn this morning. They are getting along well and I am amazed at the size difference between them. They are only two weeks apart, but ducklings grow so fast. A couple of the older ones are trying to move from their squeak to a quack and they are starting to grow tail and wing feathers. It won’t be too much longer until they outgrow their current home.

 

Freedom April 3, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Farm Critters,Lambs,Sheep Shop — harpersfarm @ 5:03 pm

We took Marta’s abandoned lamb to a new home today. He is now with two other bottle babies on a farm just outside town. The little guy really hit the jackpot, because not only is he not going to end up in the freezer, but he also gets to keep his ramhood. The family who adopted him plans to use him as their new ram. He was a sweet little guy, and it was hard to see him being pushed and shoved around the pen by the other sheep. Now, he will be with other lambs, so he should make new friends and live a long life as one of the flock.

Back at home, we released the ewes and their babies from the lambing pen. All the lambs have their tails banded and the rams are castrated. They are spunky and full of life. The ewes are loving the freedom again. Lambing is the only time of year we really pen the girls up and they constantly vocalize their disapproval. Needless to say, it is much quieter when we step outside now.

 

Beware… The Feed Store April 1, 2010

Filed under: Chicken Runs,Daily Life,Ducks,Farm Critters — harpersfarm @ 2:36 pm

I tried to be good.  Really.  I thought I could go into the feed store and just come out with the one item I went in for.  It just didn’t happen that way.  I was followed home by two Silver Laced Wyandottes, two Barred Rocks, two Khaki Campbell ducklings and a Pekin duckling.  They are now nestled in the laundry room in a tub next to the eight cornish-cross chicks that we picked up on Saturday.  I promised Rob that I would “try” to stay out of the feed store for a while, but I think he knows me better than that…