Monday, October 13, 2014

Getting ready for Winter

There is so much to be done on the farm to get ready for Winter.  Aside from making sure that all the snow removal equipment is tuned up and ready, fences need to be checked and animal housing needs to have a good going over to ensure that everything is ship-shape.
While DH takes care of that end of the business, the garden needs to be readied for winter and all the birds and animals will also need to be checked.
Chickenland has looked like a giant pillow fight has taken place.  The girls molt twice a year, more heavily in fall than spring.  This leaves some looking a bit disheveled (does anyone ever look "sheveled"?).  We make sure that they get a balanced diet with a little extra protein (yummy! meal worms!) mix in.  Scratch feed is also increased a wee bit to ensure those tummies stay warm over night.
who you callin' scruffy?
To ensure that the chicken houses are warm, extra straw is laid down, forming a nice cushy floor to hold in the heat or provide a snuggly area to wiggle down into.  The hay works just like a down comforter: the air spaces in the down or straw slow the heat dissipation.  This makes those little burrows nice and warm when the winter winds blow outside.
Most of the day, Saturday, was spent clearing out the animal barn.  Once the paddock is clean of old straw, layers of stall treatment, wood shavings, and new straw are put it.  This lays down the beginnings of a deep bed which will help keep the girls warm in the winter.  Boers are cold hardy provided that one allows them to get plenty of pasture time while the seasons change.  While they don't stay outside in the cold rain (who likes to get wet and chilled?), they do go out to play while things are dry. 
 Everyone seems happy despite the chill in the air.  Winter is coming.  Another new adventure.

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