Saturday, May 28, 2011

Wow! So much news!!!

Life is busy, and one day to the next there doesn't seem to be so much change, but little events mount up.  The previous blog entry comments how the THREE little calves stick together.  Well since then here's number 4 calf (with #3 mom - we call her 'White Face'):
We haven't figured out how he got to be that color since the daddy is all black.  He's a nice little bull - healthy and full of energy.  He now has an eartag (#10) and is a 'steer'... no bull!!!

Then last week our last heifer, #5 (we just call her 'Cinco') blessed us with another little bull:
A new addition draws a lot of attention around here once it's discovered!  Here the new little guy is between his mom and #7, our first calf (a 4 month old heifer), and the legs behind him belong to #9 (first little bull).  The little guy is less than a day old.  And the daddy (Numero Uno) is always interested in his progeny:
He has greeted every single one!!  So now ALL our heifers have had their first calf and Mr Bull is now a proven bull.  He was young when we got him, but he's good at getting the job done.

When the 2 little heifers get a little bigger, we'll be trading them with a good friend of ours for 2 of his same age heifers.  That way there will be no inbreeding and we don't have to sell and buy.  He'll be getting 2 very nice heifers.  So we've grown from 6 to 11 cattle!

Then I looked at the little chicks we got in March!!!  You won't believe how they've grown!!!!  Those little white chick have grown to look like this:
They must weigh at least TEN pounds!!  One chicken will feed us for at least 2 meals and still have a little for some chicken salad.  Now that I've experienced these Cornish chickens, I have noticed they are not the brightest chickens in the hen house!!!  They are clumsy and pretty messy birds.
The other new little chicks were my little Americaunas and Production Reds.  They are growing nicely but are welter weights compared to the Cornish chickens.  They may be laying eggs soon.  In the picture (right) the 3 in the middle are Americaunas and their color varies quite a bit.  The one standing has pretty light grey tailfeathers  compared to the others.  You can see how different the second one from the right looks.  Then look at the next picture to see the 4th Americauna - it's the grey, black and white one.  The Americaunas will lay blue and green tinted eggs!!!
 The other four are the production reds and are all hues of dark red.  All of these are very fast and run like roadrunners all over the yard.  The reds lay brown eggs.
Just after I got these new chicks, our chickens started sitting on eggs.  That's been an education.  Sometimes I would see 2 hens squeezed in the same nest.  Turns out, some hens just sit on the eggs.  When some hatched, the hen switched to caring for the chicks and another hen sat on the nest.  Pretty soon I had 3 nests with 'sitters' and 3 hens caring for chicks.  One was good about taking new babies - an excellent surrogate.  So now we have our own baby chicks.  I guess Mr Rooster has proved himself too!!!  AND I've noticed he will help feed the babies sometimes and the mom's let him while they chase off the other hens!!!  Now we have 10 chicks out with the hens and I have 5 more in the grain room under the light.  I'm hoping a hen will adopt them.

Things are ever-changing!!  So gradual you just don't notice until the changes are BIG!!!  Lots more coming on the blog, so keep an eye out.  I'm off work for the summer and can keep up now!!!