Friday, June 8, 2012

Farm Update Early June 2012

Well, I have a to-do list ranging from Sunday School, to derby, to accounting, to home, to miscellaneous that stretches past my knees, but what better time to do a blog update!  Too bad 'procrastinating' is not one of the items on the list.

I just wanted to do a quick update on farm life.  We had significant improvements in our ongoing hatching experiement this time around.  Round two had 14 chicks hatch out!  They took over 48 hours from the first one to the last one which I thought was strange, but they are all doing well.  I was ready to turn the incubator off and dump 'er all out, but just didn't get around to it.  When I got home from derby last night there were three little fuzz balls in there!  They have varying markings and one little guy has brown stripes down his head and back.   We've been checking out a few videos on how to sex a chick, but I am not at all confident in my abilities, so we'll probably just end up going with the tried and true method of having them grow up and figure it out then. haha

The sheep seem to have found their groove on the pasture.  I was pretty devastated to discover one of my youngest lambs seemed to have suffocated or choked to death under my watch.  My mom actually noticed it first, having laboured breathing and panting, during one Sunday visit.  I kept an eye on it and both Mark and I checked it out carefully over the next couple days.  I thought I could feel something lodged in it's throat, but then when I felt a healthy one, for reference sake, it seemed the same.  I kept a close eye on it and it was still breathing funny, but had stopped panting, so I thought was maybe getting better (naive and lazy of me in retrospect).  One night was shutting everyone in, the ewes were particularly stubborn about going to the barn, which is when I found the poor thing laid out in the pathway.  Once again, felt so angry at myself and frustrated and dissapointed that I had not been more proactive on this.  I think these lamb losses are a real lesson for me in that I cannot expect to do all the things I'm doing and still be able to dedicate sufficient time to my farm projects, like the sheep. I need to prioritize, and observing my flock (and subsequently dealing with potential problems) needs to climb a little higher on that list.

On the plus side of the sheep, I shipped my first four lambs and they were so beautiful and conform that I was very happy with them.  I am going to pick up and deliver them today, so that is one more job to cross off the list.

The pigs are growing like crazy.

The crop is all in and Mark is busy finger-weeding the soybeans today. They are out of the ground and looking good.Our winter wheat field is growing really nicely, although there are a number of winter-kill spots that will haunt Mark throughout the growing season. 
We had a long cold week, so today's sunshine is more than welcome!

I have more laundry to do, kids to play with, cheese to make, butter to wash, supper to figure out, garden to weed, Sunday School closing to organize and on and on and on, so I'd best shut down this computer and get at it.

Hope this finds you enjoying all the smells of various blooming plants and trees this time of year!  Our linden is blooming right now and I think it might be the nicest smell of all!



  1. Sorry that we didn't check out that lamb on Sunday,although we probably could not have done anything anyway.Some just want to die. Our sheep pens and the hen house all got cleaned out this week so the smell here is not quite as heavenly as yours. But a sign of Spring !!

  2. Wait till your kids are in school - already busy June goes completely over the top with elementary age kids. I'm sorry to hear about the lamb - we once lost half a batch of broiler chicks to pneumonia, which we quickly realized was completely our fault, we'd gotten complacent about our knowledge of chick brooding and not recognized the signs for what they were - so we can relate. At least you've got lots of other success happening. And you do sound busy!