Well I’ve had a busy few weeks! Actually that’s just an understatement. Firstly, I had a semi successful hatching. Of my 15 starting eggs I hatched out 3 chicks and a duck. I believe the problem was a user issue, me. I believe the temperature fluctuated too wildly OR that I didn’t have as quite a reliable thermometer as I thought. Regardless, there were 3 chicks that successfully hatched, but one didn’t make it, and there was only one duck that hatched out. The surviving chicks are wonderfully healthy so that’s a great relief!
The big chicks have finally been hardened off. Yay! They go outside in a makeshift pen during the day then come back in at night. Unfortunately due to lack of man power and rain that occurs only on my husband’s day off, we haven’t even STARTED to build the permanent coop. Hopefully since my husband isn’t going away next month we can get a move on. Anywhoozle, the big chicks love being outside and are almost completely feathered out. Of my 12 chicks, there is only one roo, a frizzle! There was even a day that got to be 90 so even the wee chicks got to go out for a little while as well.
On my birthday I woke up and looked out upon my beehives and after suffering a minor burst of terror, I ran out to see that a bear had knocked over one of my hives and just destroyed it. I’ve never been so angry in my life those are MY bees! Unfortunately it came back every night until finally I crumbled and sent them 85 miles BACK to my parents where there absolutely NO bears. I stupidly, and naively disregarded the threat of bears to my hives. Never having grown up to even THINK about bears I didn’t worry too much. I wish now that we had set up a chain link enclosure with electric fencing. So someday in the future, when I have the necessary protection I will attempt bees again. Sadly I ended up losing 3 of the four hives.
One final note, as a happy birthday gift from my pheasants I got an egg! Since my birthday I’ve gotten about an egg a day. There are two different colors so I don’t know who’s laying what, I can never catch them at it. My husband and I decided that to make up a regular chicken egg we’d need about 3 or 4 pheasant eggs. They’re just so cute! I’m waiting for my ameraucana girls to start laying. Then we’ll really have an aster egg party going on!
Such a day wrought with emotions my birthday was. We no longer have to worry about the bear destroying my hives. I have to say once my father and I loaded them up on the back of his truck I felt tremendously better. I also don’t want a bear poking around for other obvious reasons, Penny. Penny met with a porcupine (another animal I’ve never crossed before in my LIFE) this winter, lucky for her no vet trip for her. Between my husband and I we were able to get all the quills out. Small tip that would have helped greatly, take a pair of scissors and cut the end of the quill off and you should just be able to pull it out with no problem. Ah how I wish someone one would have told me that sooner. It’s just one of life’s lessons. We’re forearmed for the future now.