Spring peepers

The chicks we purchased about 5 weeks ago are growing like… chicks do.

Nancy built a mobile nursery for the little ones, and has been moving it every couple days. They seemed to appreciate the heat lamp the last couple nights it went down near freezing, but don’t seem to mind the 40s temperatures early in the morning.  Why the chicken wire? Eagles and hawks do occupy the skies around here, and perhaps we’ll see raccoons and their kin sometime. Hopefully they’ll grow fast enough to help curtail the cicada population this summer!

In the meantime, we’ve seen an upsurge in ticks this year, on the dog and us, so we escalated the plan for guinea hens and picked up a dozen keets today. Hopefully they’ll grow as fast as the chicks and help keep the tick population at bay. Guinea hens are semi-wild and flyers, so after taming them as much as we’re able, we’ll eventually just let them go and hope they stay around the farm. We’re repurposing a large dog cage for a hatchling area until they’re big enough to move to the nursery.  Some folks think they’re ugly birds; personally, I like the way they look. I just hope their loud calls don’t bother the neighbors.  But more guineas, fewer ticks!

More hands make light work in this case. Not also true when we participated in the #communitycleanup last weekend. Lost count of the beer cans, cigarette butts, Malibu mini bottles and junk we picked up. Backs were achy, but it was gratifying. It was especially hard after shoveling several loads of dirt and mulch the day before. My aging body needs more of that!

This weekend I’m picking up 10 metal shelving units for the mushroom incubation and grow rooms, and hope to get started on building that out very soon. We also have many potted plants and starts waiting for a home in the soil, and around 25 seedling trays in the greenhouse. So, lots of bed preparation is in the short future.

We’ve been working through William Horvath‘s permaculture design course the past few weeks, which will help us identify best areas of planting, as well as an overall design that’ll help guide our farm work this year. Our property is challenging, with a lot of elevation changes, microzones and infrastructure to work with – and around! As we finalize our design, I’ll be posting details and documents.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *