Thursday, September 29, 2011

baby bunnies

So when I said we gave the rooster away, I should say we actually kind of "exchanged" him for a pair of grey rabbits.  They were from a friend of the friend who took the rooster off out hands, and were about 4 months old when we got them.  About that same time, a completely different friend of a friend offered to give us his two rabbits (both California giants, one white, and one black and white spotted) and two rabbit hutches as well.  So all of the sudden we had four rabbits and two hutches...for free!  I summoned up all my past 4-H knowledge and attempted to decipher the sex of all of them, and as far as I could tell, we had one buck and three does.  We left the two grey ones in together (one of which was the buck). Sure enough I came outside to feed them one day and they were doing their thing...except the buck had the poor doe's front confused with her back...I got a good chuckle out of that, let me tell you.

Apparently they got everything figured out, because about 2 1/2 weeks ago she had a bunch of baby bunnies.

This doe has proved to be a much better mama then our first, and the 6 babies are looking plump and healthy and stinkin' adorable.  One of them is a little crippled, we're not really sure what happened to him, but we think that he somehow got out of the nesting box and the chickens pecked at his legs from under the hutch...just one more reason to put them in their coop.

My husband has already bred another doe (a really big white one who already looks pregnant) and is going ahead with the rabbit raising/eating plan.  I'm still not sold on the idea, especially because these baby  bunnies are so dang cute, but fortunately it's his enterprise and I just get to hold baby bunnies.

I'm enjoying the cuteness while it lasts, anyway.

jen g.

i love you...shicken

This is Eli.  He's our chicken wrangler.  The hens have been confined to the coop for a week or so (after making several daring forays into the neighbor's yard).  But when they were free-ranging in our yard it was not uncommon to see him running around with a chicken or two under his arm.  He took them with him in the trampoline enclosure, put them in the grill (which was thankfully off), and even brought them inside to freak unsuspecting house-guests out. We also frequently heard him tell them, very sincerely, "I love you shicken"

It's become a household term of endearment.

jen g.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

chicken update.

Well, we are down to two hens. I'm calling them Nellie and Faye (shout out to Ingrid Michaelson). A few weeks after the first rooster was evicted, the other two started making an awful racket and went the way of their predecessor.  It is a lot quieter around here, and I noticed a sharp decline in food consumption and toe pecking (mine) after they left.

Up until the last week, the hens had free range in the backyard.  (We did find a new home for our chicken-eating golden retriever, in case you were wondering).  But then they started flying up to roost on our fence at night and ended up in our neighbor's yard two days in a row. After the second retrieval, they both had a come-to-Jesus in my kitchen with me, a pair of Cutco kitchen shears, and a youtube video on the art of chicken wing clipping.  That was an experience.

They are now mostly confined to their coop.  I let them out sometimes during the day, but I really don't want to take the risk of having disgruntled neighbors, so it's only for a few supervised hours.  They have also started laying an egg every now and then *happy squeal* and they do it at the most random times, so I don't like letting them out of their coop until they have produced their egg for the day.  I only get one egg a day, and I don't want to miss it...cause boy are they good!

jen g.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

At last. . . an egg!

She arrived today. . . the long awaited treasure came. A latte colored egg was discovered just before breakfast today. . . it made me smile! (Not sure it has been worth $50+ in feed, mountains of "compost" and early morning wakings to hear hens hollerin' in the roost.) Nevertheless-- she is here and we greeted her with smiles and plan to consume her before dinner- weird!
jen t.