These are four of the Five Little Roosters. They were all roosting under the heat lamp last night.
They do not usually roost there, though they will be a year old next month.
Here is number five, and this is where they usually roost. One sleeps INSIDE the nest box... or sometimes, two sleep inside it.
The others sleep on top.
Here they are, this morning, out in the cold. Please note that one of the D'Uccles (the blue birds) has no tail... he molted his and it has not grown back. You can tell how truly small they are.
Just before this picture, their red and white brother from another mother, who was the Sixth Little Rooster, but has now moved to the big henhouse where there are HENS, had come over and beaten them up.
They will stand outside literally in the freezing cold, when they have a warm light and henhouse five feet away.
The little henhouse, where they live, used to be full of birds, but they are now the last.
Keith and I talked last night... we have no garage here, except for a single car from the 40's that is clear at the other end of the property from our house, where we store the riding mower and some gardening things. He has thought of razing the old henhouse and the little red henhouse, where these roosters live, and that he built 8 years ago, and putting a pad and a garage there. We would not do this right away, but sometime in the next two years. It's actually a good idea, because a neighbor of ours has built one on his property, and included four stalls at the back of it, that look out into his pasture. We would do this model, as well. It would get us a good, tight building, a place for our cars, and a good, warm place to keep some small goats or that elusive pony, and safely. Turkeys! By themselves, where they would not irritate chickens!
This morning, there was a traffic jam in the old henhouse:
These are the hens whose eggs we can't use... and I have been getting 8 eggs daily from this house.
This guy, and a fox, a skunk, two possums and two kitties have been getting them. However, in a few weeks the feeding program will cease.
I have news for those two hens, though... I am about to move
Miss Nugget and her nine eggs up to the nursing cage, where the hens are laying above.
They can spend a few weeks in the nursing cage, and then move outside to the little pen when it is warmer.
The hens lay daily in the nursing cage, and are going to be ticked off at me... but they are just going to have to find another laying spot, and my guess is, it will be in the box where Nugget has ensconced herself.
Yesterday, I made a trip to the feed store in Bonner Springs, where we have traded for years.
In the parking lot were a mother and daughter, selling eggs.
In a cage in front of their truck were four ducks that appeared to be Pekin/Buff crosses.
They were 3 months old, so full grown.
Any of you that keep ducks know what a pain little tiny ducks are (though cute as can be)... they are snake bait, and hard to keep clean, they spill their waterers constantly.
These were just the right size. I had just told Keith yesterday morning that I would like to get some ducks again.
I spoke to the ladies, and they gave me a card, and we spoke for about ten minutes. Keith will help me carry one of the two unused dog houses from the pasture pen or the little henyard, and we will put it in the new henspa yard. I'll load it with straw, and move a fortex in there for the duckies to enjoy.
When I have everything set up, I'll call the ladies. If they have sold the ducks, I'll ask them to keep their eyes out for more... and I'll proceed to look for a pair. I don't want to breed, I want hens for their lovely eggs and their "duckiness". I love to watch ducks potter along in water, digging their little holes and being happy with their tails wagging.
It's 12:49 PM, and the snow has not started yet... indeed, it actually looks "less gray" than it did an hour ago!
We are, however, still supposed to get 3-6 inches this afternoon into tonight. I am going to try to get to church at four, anticipating that I will not be able to get out of the driveway tomorrow.
I read a wonderful blog post this morning, here:
Morning Ramble is written by Patty Lockwood, who lives in Texas. I have often found inspiration there.
She focuses this morning on ONE sentence... it is a remarkable one, and I'll let you go there and read about it.
By the way, Keith came home from work last night and deliberately came up our road from the south... there, in Roxanne's driveway (for the animals have the run of her entire several-acres yard) were the strutting Jackson, the strutting white tom turkey, a strutting peacock, a group of guineas and some chickens.
We both had to laugh... we are so happy that our turkeys are so happy!
Thank you, Roxanne!
And that's it for a gray Saturday at Calamity Acres.