Sunday, May 2, 2010
The sacrifencial chicken
I don't really think I can say something everyday that directly relates to moving to the country, but my grandkids, when I have them, will know more about me than, "this was grandma's recipe or chair" or whatever; and that's all I really care about. It's not that I want to be remembered by my descendents but I want them to know what God was and did in my life, you know? If there is one thing I wish I knew about the people that are dead and gone up my lineage, it's that.
The scripture says in Revelation that we overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony. That anything we would say would be counted worthy to be coupled with the cross in that way is humblingly astounding and we should do it- say it, write it down.
My little challenge with talking about rural stuff is that there are many people WAY more experienced than I am out there who have written all about it. I basically have no experience with most of the hands on things I am attempting right now. What I can offer are observations that I haven't come across in any of the books I've read and ponderings that I wish I would have come across. Here's one:
Dear Joel Salatin, I bought both your books and understand to rotate the chickens after the cows in the paddocks so they scratch through the manure making it great for the soil etc.etc. Here's my question: Since we are using electric fence for the cows, if the chickens touch the fence on their turn through, will they be electrocuted to death? I mean, I do know that that is how big poultry operators do in their birds so surely they can't handle the kind of voltage a cow can. Yours Truly, Jackie
Joel doesn't have an 800 number and a call center for questions, unfortunately.
So with this question in mind, this weekend we finally got two new paddocks set up and moved the cows to fresh grass; then took the chicken box and chickens up to officially begin work on their first paddock. I guess I could have thrown a test chicken at the electric fence to see what would happen since we have 2 roosters and only need one; but I didn't think of that until just now.
So later on I am going to mosey up to the field and see if there are any dead chickens fried to my fence due to some oversight I made in my poultry literature selections. If I post about this again you can assume that it was an affirmative. If I don't you can assume chickens' legs are made of ground rods.
(following was the original followup post that has now been edited to be pasted below):
As a follow up to yesterday's post, there are no fried chickens on my fence but it may be because, right now they are too short and just go right under! It's possible they are getting slightly zapped in the head, but I can't tell if their IQ is going down because, well, they're chickens.
I don't know if the paddock thing is working though because even though their box is there, they keep going across the lane into the woods to scratch for bugs. It happened yesterday when we first took them up but I just thought they were curious. When I let them out this morning, though, they headed straight there. So on my way back in after feeding the cows I stood there for a minute and thought, "why are these chickens crossing the road?" and then God and I had a good laugh. It's as if the real source of that joke was revealed to me after all these years and I felt like I was initiated.... like maybe we are farmers- who knows.