Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Ducks are Like Old Men

We had an early spring and I am glad I made the decision to enjoy it and get some things done outside (read throttle down on homeschooling) because the cold came back.

Piggy relations (PR) have been coming along. We did the piggy run, but all he did was stay over by the cow pen... he wanted some friends. So, we put him back in the pen. Buttercup still beats up on him a bit
but a pig is very tough skinned and he just rolls with it. We put him back in his own little pen at night so that he can eat well at least in the morning and the evening. While he is in with the cows he has to settle for whatever he digs up and some of their hay.

Caramel has taken a liking to the little fella (yes, that is Caramel's ball so he can make it through the rest of winter without getting bored; but now the pig entertains him):

and I have actually seen them play the head to head game (which is properly played between two cows like this):

but gets even more fun with a pig (though this picture doesn't do it justice because Kosher can hold his own):

It's pretty funny.
Buttercup just tolerates him. Yesterday I tried to give him some food and water while he was in the cow pen, but as always Caramel intruded and was trying to eat it. I chastised Caramel and pulled him away several times; so he turned around and took out his frustrations on the pig- slamming it a few good times....

so then Kosher runs over to snuggle Buttercup for comfort. I think he maybe believes Buttercup is 'base' so he's safe. OR maybe I just have too much time on my hands.

I like this one when he switched to the otherside because you can see him standing on his tippy toes, well tippy hooves. Caramel is doing an aside to the audience, "Does he really think I can't get him from here?"

I know cows can't roll their eyes, but in her mind I am sure Buttercup was- though she just kept chewing her cud.

The third duck started hatching ducklings. She left her nest after four hatched so Cory put the rest in the incubator. It's a good thing too- six more hatched out of that group and all four ducklings she was caring for died. She turned out to be a bad mother- left them all too far behind when it was way too cold for them to handle it. Sad. The six we have in the box are now doing well. We helped the first one hatch, which was a bad idea. He was sickly for awhile but seems to be doing better. The last one that hatched has a crippled foot. We are going to have to do something if it doesn't improve soon. We tried to splint it last night but that didn't go so well. We're going to have to try again.

The best things about chicks and ducklings is how they nod off CONSTANTLY. They could be eating or walking or playing and then it is like someone just hit them with a tranquilizer dart...ZZZZZZZ.

They could be eating, like this one:

Climbing a hill, like this one (you're lucky you're head isn't a bit heavier, ducky):

Preening their stomach, like this one:

Or sometimes it hits them all at once, when they are playing together:

When we had chicks last year, there was a little piece of cardboard they used as a perch and the chicks would nod off til they slowly tilted forward and banged their beak against the wall of the box- startling themselves awake again. HOURS of entertainment.

Sunday Cory pulled out a bit more of the mess in the field and then disked it. He then left to meet a friend and I spread the seed (yes I am wearing Cory's clothes-just ignore that):

and pressed it in.

We found this roller on Craig's list for $50- a great price for what it is. It worked nicely. I had a lot (probably too much) seed left over compared to what I expected so I think I will need to seed some more. I forgot to do what the one guy at the seed company told me- go east and west after you go north and south so you are less likely to have "holes." The sun was going down and I felt a little rushed...going to maybe add some. We are going to have to cut down all 5 of the big pines in the upper field to open up the grass area for pasture. We really only bought enough seed for one pasture but we are going to try to make it work for two- the one in the pictures above I did wasn't as big as what we thought or else I didn't lay the seed thick enough. We need as much pasture as we can get because paying for hay through summer is not what we wanted to do. We will have to be really careful on anything we seed- making sure it is rooted well before we graze it (and that it is not wet so the cows don't compact it). It is likely though we will have to suck it up and feed hay through the warm season this year while this seed gets established. Better some than none.


  1. You absolutely crack me up....the pig and the cows....I love it!

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  3. I know what it's like to personify pets; I'm sure I would do the same if I had cows, a pig, and ducks as well.

    I hope your seed-stretching responds for you. That looks like a whole lot of work, but also tremendously rewarding.

    God's peace....