Farm Pests

Before I get to the topic of the day, there a a few photos I wanted to share.  George has an interesting manner of access g the feed in the trough.  I thought it was cute.

peppa and george eating

I found a sick hen this morning.  I put her in a rabbit hutch with food and water.  Hopefully she will recover.

sick hen

I saw what Tom calls a red racer this morning.  Here is its head,

red racer face

and tail.  As a child Tom called them this because of the red stripe.  Apparently they pooped on him.

red racer tail

Here is what I think is the prettiest rose I have ever seen. The photo doesn’t do it justice. I planted these roses and others after we bought the house in anticipation of our wedding here.  So glad I did.

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Tonight for dinner I made Chicken Fricassee from The Taste of History Cookbook.  It is very different from the one from the show.  Since Tom doesn’t like mushrooms and the show one uses pearl onions, I used small onions and shallots instead,.  I was worried it was going to be bland, but it was actually really good.

img_3173

As for the pests, you are aware that the bald eagles have been killing our chickens.  Well, rabbits have been eating the vegetable starts in our garden.  We have a live trap set up there but no action so far.  Thankfully Ryeleigh is starting to show more interesting in them, chasing their trails every morning and howling. I keep trying to get video of it but am always too late.  Hopefully she will discourage them but also not follow them off our property.

live trap

We are always battling rodents (rats, mice, voxels, moles).  Starlings are an arch nemesis as they eat a lot of our chicken food and poop all over the barn.  Deer have eaten our corn.  We are always cognizant of the predators (coyotes, bobcats, cougars and bears).  They have all been seen on our property or very closeby.  Thankfully we have never lost an animal to them yet.  Plus there are the neighbor’s dogs as a threat.  Again, haven’t lost any animals to them yet.  We have had minks and weasels in the past eating our chickens but seem to have succeeded at least temporality against them.  Birds eat our cherries most years and last year ate my grapes.  And humans have stolen our eggs (and water).

But recently we are suspicious that skunks are eating our eggs.  Occasionally we smell their odor near the barn and some days our egg production is quite low.  The other day Tom noticed a lot of broken shells in the barn.  So we put the game camera up in the barn looking at the nest boxes.  We knew we would get a lot of photos of chickens moving around but hoped to see if we could see the offender.  It was up for two days, and all we got was the movements of chickens, peafowls and starlings.  We had over 600 photos of this.  I culled it down to a little over 100.  But I think it is fascinating what happens in the nest boxes when we are not watching.  I doubt anyone else is interested, but here are the photos in the off chance someone else is curious what happens in the nest boxes.

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10 Responses to Farm Pests

  1. margaret@crystalcreekfibers.com says:

    I would bet that the predator is coming in when the chix are up and about so much.I always had racoons after mine

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  2. Denise says:

    so who are the smaller black birds that start showing up in the second half of the photos (8:42 onwards?) are they crows? we had problems with crows stealing eggs a while back-

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  3. Jeanne says:

    Interesting! I had no idea there was so much moving around going on. Does the camera go 24 hours a day? I thought it would be set just to go during the night. I was looking at the time noted on the pictures. It was a surprise to see the peafowl in there! I hope the culprit will be caught by the camera, but I don’t know how you’ll “get” the rascal.

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    • Jeanne says:

      I forgot to say that I got a chuckle out of George in the feed trough!
      And your rose IS lovely! Do you know what the name of it is? I used to have a small rose garden when we lived in Idaho, and thoroughly enjoyed them. Now we only have two. I think the third one died. My favorite of these is called Summer Love. It’s Jackson-Perkins rose. I’ve had the best luck with their roses.

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    • Donna says:

      It was on 24 hours but photographs with any motion. So it should have picked up the egg stealer.

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