Friday, March 17, 2017

Birds of a Feather

Golly wampus, the weather yesterday was gorgeous.  Lots of sunshine and all the birds seemed to enjoy it to the utmost.


This was afternoon feeding time.  The birds gobbled up the chopped cabbage and cut up apples.


I think this was a pan of grain that must have tasted pretty good, too.  Num-num-num!


Wanna-Be Mama Muscovy duck came off her nest to vacuum up some whole grains.  Love that corn!  Funny how disheveled setting hens sometimes look.  When questioned about her untidy appearance, she said, "This incubating eggs is rough on a duck."


While she was off on her quick lunch break, I snapped this picture of her nest.  All the eggs aren't visible, but we think she's setting on about a dozen of them.


Many of the birds just stood in the sunshine and preened themselves.  Must have felt good.

That was yesterday.


This was when the birds were let out of their enclosures this morning.  You'll notice there's not a chicken in sight.  Our chickens have always been real pansies and are never eager to place their delicate little feet on cold, wet white stuff.

We had but a mere dusting of snow when we first got up, but by the time we went out for morning chores there was a smidge over an inch.  It continued to come down (although lightly) most of the day but total accumulation was under 3".  Now at nearly dusk, it's raining/misting.  Temp is 34 degrees so I'm imagining it will freeze over night.  Very typical for the month of March in the north woods.

16 comments:

DDD said...

Love the title!

gld said...

March must be the same everywhere; our temperatures are fluctuating almost daily.
Next week supposed to hit 80°!

Interesting how the birds seem to know when to start setting and how many eggs they can cover. I hope all hers hatch.

Mama Pea said...

DDD - Thank you! Sometimes I can come up with something "catchy" and sometimes all I can conjure up is something akin to "A Post." ;o}

Mama Pea said...

Glenda - Yes, I think you're right about the unsettled month of March. When we lived in Illinois we once had a tornado in March!

I think our mild winter and now spring has maybe fooled the poultry into thinking it's later than it truly is. We really debated letting this duck start setting because it could still be quite cold when they hatch which should be around the middle of April. We've also got a goose now who has made a nest and is "collecting" a clutch before starting to set. On the other hand, it could be the birds know more than we do!

Rain said...

Hi Mama Pea :) The eggs look great, they're so big. I hope all goes well with them. I love how all of the birds seem to get along, do they? When Alex and I talk about the future, the obvious choice was chickens, but then we thought more about ducks instead. I guess we'll see where we end up when the time comes! I'm happy to say we don't have snow today, just sunny skies, cold though still, but the snow seems to be melting again! I can't wait to spend my days outside again!

Mama Pea said...

Rain - We've been amazed at how all the birds do get along together. The male geese can act like they own the show every now and then. But all that means is that they stretch out their necks, make like big meanies and chase a duck or chicken away from a feed pan. We always put out three or four pans of goodies out so everyone gets their share.

Since breeding season started, two of the males have started acting a little aggressive toward us . . . which we're not too happy about because one of the reasons we chose this Pilgrim variety of goose is that they are supposed to be so docile. We've had a really mean goose before (another variety) and don't want to have to deal with that again. So far, if we just take a step toward the bad behaving goose and threaten him in a gruff voice asking if he wants to go in the stew pot, he backs off.

I would strongly suggest you start with chickens as you'll get many more eggs and they are less expensive to buy initially. We keep our chickens as long as they keeping laying which has been up to three or four years. Then we butcher and eat them. They are, of course, no longer "fryers" but have an excellent flavored meat that is tender once I stew them.

We have sunshine today, too!

Farmer Barb said...

We are graced with only gray skies and 35 degrees in CT. The snow is compressing and will hopefully melt into impending Spring!

Farmer Barb said...

My friend has an Angry Pilgrim gander. We have to raise our wings and run at him to let him know who's boss. He has been killing chickens. F.

Rain said...

I think you're right about the chickens. Everyone says they're a good "starter" critter for a new homesteader. I've had just one encounter with a mean goose, or two...it was Canadian Geese in the pond, I'm guessing they were protected either their nest or their young. They followed me as I walked the dogs around the pond, honking very loudly the entire time! When we got to the end of the pond, I was turning to go back home, trying not to get too close when one of them came galloping out, making an awful sound, scared the bleep out of me lol...

Mama Pea said...

Farmer Barb - Uh-oh. Now that gives me pause. That would be AWFUL to have one of the geese killing the chickens!

Mama Pea said...

Farmer Barb - The sun has been doing a good job here all day. Lots of snow is melting. Unfortunately, more is on it's way next week. Ah, spring time in the north!

Kristina said...

My hens love to eat the snow. If I enter their coop with snowpacked boots, they attack my feet, ha ha!

Sandy said...

Mama Pea,

Temps hit 90 degrees today, tomorrow in the 60's. I've been pushing warm temperatures your way......

I'm sure you'll have 12+ little Muscovy ducks a hatching soon. How exciting!
Hugs,
Sandy

Mama Pea said...

Sandy - Ninety degrees in March?? I can't handle that, for sure. Good thing you're acclimated to your part of the country!

We're keeping our fingers crossed for a successful hatch of ducklings. Time will tell!

Susan said...

I keep forgetting to ask you - where did you get that water guard? It is brilliant! It's all I can do to keep Cordelia from bathing in the water dish.

Mama Pea said...

Susan - We got it along with much other miscellaneous chicken equipment several years ago from an old farmer in Wisconsin who was getting rid of all his stuff. It's supposed to sit up on the rim of the pan but the birds keep knocking it askew . . . most of the time though it stays over the pan just the same.