Thursday, June 26, 2008

Yet ANOTHER Visitor.....

Albeit, this one was not the "human" kind.....

This morning, I was out doing chores and getting things ready to milk, when I looked up the driveway. At first, I THOUGHT it was one of my goats that had gotten out, but recalled that they were all accounted for - in the barn (waiting for breakfast.....).

I could just barely see this spotted fawn slipping into the grass along the drive. I didn't have time to go for a real camera, so I used my cell phone. I managed to take a few ok photos - and some bad ones - before he took off.
It was pretty amazing. He was as big as some of my goats (bigger then the kids), and he managed to push through a 4" x 6" hole in the fence. The wire even came back to it's original size!



I got to within about 10' of him, but he was getting skittish, so I backed off. I do hope he found his mom, though. Instead of breaking OUT of a fenced area, he didn't realize he was breaking INTO the pasture I just fenced off for the goats (The Jungle)! I saw him through the trees later, but didn't pursue it.




The goats even managed to cross the creek in the Jungle today! I was amazed - and glad. All but two found their way across. I went out to check on them mid morning and found the two "abandoned" goats bellering to the others (and being ignored).

I stood at the top of the driveway, in a place where they could see me, and called them. They FINALLY decided that they could jump the creek and were reunited with family. Goats can be sissies, occasionally......

Since it is supposed to rain again tonight, I figured it would be a good idea to get the tank set up for the goats in The Jungle. I used an old cast iron bathtub for the tank. It still had the original drain in it, so I capped it off. I used a regular steel nut for a sink drain, and cut out a circle of tin to fit inside of it. I added some silicone, screwed everything on tight and let it set up. I DID put some water in it for the goats, but it will fill when it rains.

It sure beats the 3 5 gallon buckets I WAS using....

I had a nice surprise in the barn tonight. I was closing things up - and getting my two little "grumpy goats" into their pen for the night. They always grumble when I come out at night because they know I'm gonna separate them from their moms.....

Anyhow - I always check the places where my hens like to lay eggs. I turned on the lights and found not one, but TWO hens sitting tight on nests, right next to each other. Since the spot where they were at was where my hay has to go - when we are able to cut it - I have to make sure they don't stay there at night.

I lifted hen Number 1 off of her nest and found - NOTHING under her. I set her back down and she "resumed the position". I figured that I could grab her anytime, so I picked up hen Number 2 off her nest.

Normally, I find 2 or 3 eggs under such a hen but, this time, I found ELEVEN!
I was pretty surprised to find that many. I am POSITIVE this nest was not there this morning because it was where I had 4 bales of hay sitting. I moved the hay this morning - and there were no eggs or hens anywhere CLOSE to them!

I set hen #2 down and she started to run AWAY from the nest. As soon as she did, hen #1 hopped up and set down on the eggs. I think that hen #2 was the mom from last week who hatched only one chick. I gave the chick to another hen who hatched 4. I think she was still feeling broody.

Hen #1 seemed like she WANTED the nest more, so I collected her and the eggs up, and moved them to the brooder house. She went right back to work sitting on them.

The hens must have a secret language between themselves that tells them to "lay your eggs here and I'll sit on them for you".....

whatever they do, it worked to perfection today.....

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