Saturday, April 14, 2012

Spring is Springing!

This is, without a doubt, the "springiest" spring we've had here.  What do I mean?  We've got babies coming out of the woodwork!  Well, not literally.....

You already know about the class chicks.  They've been home a little while, but they are still in the brooder, so they are still babies.
Why is this picture sideways, Blogger?  Why???
Interesting blend of genetics here.  I seem to have one Copper Marans, two Ameraucana/something combos, one red and one white, and one something/Silkie because she's WAY too small to be anything else.  We sure know how to brew 'em here.

Then we have our ducklings.  The planned ducklings, ordered back in January.  They arrived on Wednesday and are doing wonderfully.

The little yellow ones are White Cresteds and the little brown at the top and the black on the bottom are Runners.  I think the Runners are my favorites.  They are always so friendly.

Then we have the little striped trio:
Gah!  Curse you, Blogger!!!!
You might notice that we're lacking the little black one.  Unfortunately, shortly after she was born, she started breathing oddly.  We did what we could, but she passed on anyway.  The little lives are so fragile.  I am very glad to say that the three here are doing very well, eating like little pigs and seemingly thriving.  We have one girl and two boys and they are precious.  Ellie is a superior mother.  When they all lay together, they are a stripey stripe-apalooza.  It is wonderful to see.

Today, we had some surprise babies!  I walked past Ginger, who didn't scream like a banshee, and I looked at her to see why.  Lo and behold:

Crazy Ginger hatched her babies.  Two little ducks, one looks like a Runner/Blue Swedish, and the other is a Welsh Harlequin/something combo.  We have interesting genetics here, don't we?  Chicken or duck, we offer interesting combinations, it seems.

They look to be about a day old, so I think they hatched yesterday, and we didn't see.  Unfortunately, Ginger was still sitting on her nest, on the third egg, which had either hatched and smothered, or rotted after being pretty well developed, and it STANK.  Ugh.  She seemed to still think it was going to hatch, but obviously, that wasn't gonna happen.  I held my nose and cleaned out her nest, hoping she'd now give it up.  She hasn't so far.  If she doesn't take the babies for food and water soon, I'll have to take them away.  I did sneak in and give them some water (fighting off the blows from Ginger at the time), and they were thirsty.  I am really hoping she gets on it and does what she's supposed to do.  If not, they'll join the four other little ones.  It wouldn't be ideal, though.

You'd think that was it, right?  Nah.  I've got more.  Yesterday saw the arrival of the two biggest babies yet to grace Chicken Scratch.

Yep, our little long-awaited goat girls came home!  After a very long ride from western New York, after gallons of goat pee and a slightly car sick goat (and a VERY carsick me), I present to you

Lilly (Lillypad)



How do you name your animals?  I often wait to see what they "look" like and then name them what seems to be right for them.  Sometimes they don't seem to have an name.  But did you ever have an animal name themselves?  I never have.  Minerva is the first.  Lilly looked like a Lilly to me when I met her, and I thought it would fit her, and it does.  But Minerva didn't have a name.  She didn't look like any name I could think of.  Nothing fit.  Honestly, I was just going to bring her home, live with her a little while, and see what might work.  But yesterday, I got her in the car, jumped in myself, said hi to Lilly, and then out came "Hi Minerva!".  Yeah.  I don't know where it came from.  It wasn't a name I had even thought of.  But there it was, so I have to figure she picked it herself.  And there she is.  Minerva.

Minerva is the herd queen.  Where Minerva goes, Lilly follows.

Eating from their outdoor hay rack

Minerva enjoys tasting everything.  Everything.
Like my book

Lilly is sweet.

 Lilly is more gentle.  Lilly like rubs on the bridge of her nose and on her hard walnut-shell head.

Don't you love their bright pink water bucket?  They didn't trust it yesterday, but now they do.
They both like to sit with me in their run, right up against me.   They are learning quickly how to walk on a leash.  They both bleat like mad when I go away. Though I love the noise (if I could bottle it for a bad day, I would.  I really think it would do the trick and brighten the day up), I'm hoping they will stop, because it makes me feel bad.  I think it's because they came from a much larger herd, and now that there's two, it feels like they're all alone.  Poor little puddings.  I visit as much as I can, which I know is counterproductive. 

It's just like babies.  Oy.  But I am pleased to say that they are doing very well and are sweet, sweet girls.  I don't think I've yet had an animal that is as accepting and open as these two are.  They are a joy.

And that's really it.  Be prepared for many more stories about all these little ones.  We are hopping!
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  1. I just loved this newsy post! The ducklings are adorable! I hope the mom will take care of hers. It is so cute to see them together. And CONGRATULATIONS on the goats : ) Toggenburgs I assume? And baby kitties too! No wonder we haven't heard from you in a few days.

  2. What a wonderful post! I feel happy just reading about all the babies!

  3. Hi..I came over from Rural Revival with Andrea...Looks like you are one busy gal!Very cute blog it! Looking forward to reading your past and future posts (and some of your books on your list)..

  4. Michaele--Thank you! I just love those girls. They are Alpines, but Minerva especially looks like a Toggenburg, esp. with those wattles!

    Mary Ann--Thank you too! I love babies. That's the beautiful part about Spring.

    Ain't--Welcome! I'm so glad to meet you. Thank you for stopping by!

  5. All babies are cute but ducks take the cake. So sweet!! I just love Lilly and Minerva (their names too) such beautiful creatures.

    And thank you so much for your chick advice. It really is overwhelming and what you told me helps A LOT! Thank you! Do you think I will know fairly quickly if the two mama's won't get along in the brooder together? Should I wait to put mama #2 in there was she's hatched her babies?

    Thanks again : )

  6. The baby ducklings are so cute! All babies are really. Of course I love baby kittens but you're right, life is fragile especially for the newly born. Congratulations on your population boom. :)

  7. You have goats!! And beautiful ones!! Yay! I love goats! You are going to really enjoy them! The crying becomes less precious after awhile though, but hang tight, they eventually stop and get used to it. They think you are the herd leader and get very upset when you leave. They want to go where you go. Congrats on all the babies!

  8. Haha, just after I entered the comment above I got an email that our new goat babies were ready to be picked up!! So excited!


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