Monday, June 18, 2012
Some Recent Goin's On
Jack has been devoting most of his time to building a firewood drying/ storage shed. He designed and built it all on his own and I think it came out really well. Well, I did give my 2 cents worth on some of the framing and I made his rafter pattern for him, at his request. There will probably be a little diagonal bracing added and he has about half of the roofing on also by now. I thought it was a right nice looking shed! It is located down the valley a little bit, beside the secondary driveway, so it is easy to access with a truck or wheelbarrow but not right up next to the house.
He has a little bit of firewood already in it but has all this to move! Plus some you can't see stacked behind this stack. I think we'll have enough firewood for the next 2 years at least!
The little zoozoos have been moved down to their new quarters and boy are they excited! The little tub they were in was getting cramped but this new place is very roomy. As you can see, it even has an upstairs and perches in between. They love running up and down the ramp and jumping from perch to perch. It's wire all around so they can sun themselves on the east side and rest in the cool shade on the west. The hardware cloth bottom is great because since they are still small, their poo goes right through and they are not running around or sleeping in it. I'll show a better picture of the outside so you can see how it's situated against the big chicken coop.
Jack built all this too! We do best if we just leave whoever is going to do the building alone to do it. He might occasionally ask me a framing question or such but for the most part he doesn't need my help so he gets to do the non-house structures and I do the house!. Well, we do help each other if it's something heavy or awkward to hold; you know what I mean.
We have let the bitties out into the yard a little and they just went wild! They were flying and running everywhere. One got so excited it ran head on into the water jug. The little Speckled Sussex appear to actually be getting their speckles. I didn't think they would show up this soon.
On a sad note though, my sweet little Goober chicken died Saturday afternoon. Well, she really wasn't little; she had gotten quite large. She had a little more trouble getting around but she could still walk, although not gracefully by any means. She had her own pen and would make the rounds of the fence digging holes here and there to find bugs. She couldn't scratch like a regular chicken but she could dig some hellacious holes with her beak. Then when the urge hit she would go to her little shed and lay her egg. Although she was a strictly meat bird she laid the nicest, most consistent brown eggs of anybody. I would go check on her several times a day and she would often times have dirt caked up on her head from digging. Her comb had gotten so big it flopped over to one side, so she would turn her head sideways to peer up at me with her unobstructed eye. She also never clucked like most chickens but kinda chirped and sang to me. She seemed to mostly do it when I was near her and she could see me. I would get out of my truck and yell to her and she would squeal as loud as she could and start singing and she always sang and chattered to me while I worked in the garden.. The last couple of days I noticed she was having a lot of trouble moving; she basically wasn't able to walk. It kinda came on suddenly it seemed and I noticed that sometimes her comb would be kinda blueish too. I think maybe her heart was failing. I gave her a couple of days to see if she was going to be able to recover but she about stopped eating and drinking and I knew it was close. She didn't sing as much either. I didn't want her to suffer but it was going to be really hard to put her down myself. I picked some strawberries Saturday morning and shared them with her; that was her favorite. She did eat a few but it took her a little bit. Later in the day I checked on her and she just looked bad and was panting hard and wouldn't drink. I stayed with her and was really trying to decide how to put her down. I went inside for a few minutes to check a book on the subject and while I was gone she had a heart attack and died. We buried her over with the others in the cool shade near the creek.
Those type meat birds aren't meant to live long anyway; whether you butcher them or not, so it was a wonder she lived as long as she did. I guess I should have put her down when she was little and first started having trouble walking but she never seemed in pain and always seemed rather chipper. It's funny; the other hens can get around fine and they always seem to be griping and complaining about stuff. They scream at each other if one gets in the other's nesting box; they fight over food and are constantly making a racket. But Goober, who couldn't walk very well, always seemed happy and chattered sweetly all day as she dug her holes, grass and dirt flying all around her. I guess it's stupid to be sad over a chicken but I miss her songs while I work in the garden. It's not quite the same without her.
Pablo, I'm sorry I left you out of the last post on Father's Day; you certainly deserved to be mentioned. And if I left anybody else out I'm sorry about that too. I've just been sad about Goober and maybe a little preoccupied. Most all my posts or comments where I try to offer commendations or condolences just end up being screwed. I don't have the knack for it and should just accept that. My apologies.