Thursday, April 10, 2014

Ducklings and Goslings, Oh My!

It's that time of year. Spring is in the air (finally!) and the box of ducklings and goslings has arrived.

The moment we opened the box. The birds were one day old.
Back in the cold and dark of January it seemed like a good idea to pre-order a bunch of poultry for the spring. Now I have baby poultry coming out of my ears and I'm scrambling to care for them all. My morning chores are getting longer and longer. But I'm keeping the end in sight because we will be butchering all of the meat birds (there are 16 of them) in one month. Plus, the ducklings and goslings will soon be big enough to live outside in one of the chicken tractors. It's so much work to keep them clean and dry when they are indoors in the brooder. Plus, they smell like poultry, which is not  noticeable outside but is definitely noticeable in the guest room.

One of the two Buff goslings. Isn't it adorable?

The fluffy back of a Khaki Campbell, my personal favorite.

Exploring the brooder that will be their home for 2-4 weeks.
Well, we are quite overrun with animals at the moment but we sure are enjoying our new dog, Zeus. He has already gained 7 pounds since we got him three weeks ago (!) and shows no sign of stopping in the immediate future. I predict a 90-pound dog (he is currently 70 at ten months of age). We all adore him but he has a special bond with the girls. When Little Sister cries Zeus rushes to her side to check on her and she finds a lot of comfort in him. She won't go to bed without hugging him goodnight and in the morning I let him wake the kids up in their beds. He snuffles them out with his nose and they wake up giggling.

He gets loved on like this all day long.
Other homestead news:
We are awash in eggs. I scramble them, fry them, hard-boil them, and give a few away. One morning the dog busted out of his crate while I was gone and ate fourteen of them. (Really. Yes, he had diarrhea afterwards.)

Just-washed homestead eggs

The dog left a puddle of whites and only two of fourteen yolks!
We had a semi-freakish hailstorm the other evening. Right at the kids' bedtime some rain and thunder blew in, accompanied by pea-sized hail. It piled up in the yard for a few minutes before melting. Mr. Chanclas and I were rushing to stuff buckets under the leaky roof spots in our workshop and I saw the Muscovy duck high-tail it to cover when the hail started. All of the other animals stayed under cover, too, and everyone was fine. It was weird, though, with a strange yellow glow in the sky. Later I thought it was funny that neither Mr. Chanclas nor I thought to worry about our cars, which are never parked under cover. That's just not something to worry about, you know?

Patches of hail accumulating next to the chicken tractor


  1. Well I'm glad I'm not the only one with poultry in the spare room! And a dog who steals eggs!

  2. The khaki duck is beautiful! I can't wait to see all of the new additions.


I love to read comments so please leave me one!