Friday, October 05, 2012

As the leaves turn

Tasty "litter"
Marta dining al fresco
The leaves really aren't changing colors here yet, but are falling rapidly nevertheless – probably due to the very dry conditions we are still experiencing. The upside to this is that the sheep are too full of maple leaves to be much interested in hay.

All ten hens – one white, two brown, three gold, and four speckled!
(I take satisfaction from order like this. Don't tell me what that means.)

Integration tools: wire cage and Flock Block
Still wary, but surviving (pullet on right has an injured comb)
The chicken flock is finally integrated. Wednesday morning I turned everyone loose together for a bit while I watched, and it occurred to me that the wire pen I've been using to confine Miss Nasty could be a useful obstacle if moved to the middle of the chicken yard. "Line of sight" would no longer necessarily be "line of attack." My light bulb moment seems to have worked; there has been a minimum of squawking and bloodshed, and my worry and workload has been reduced. The addition of a Flock Block and a daily offering of overripe prunes has also helped.
Brassy laying an egg under the nest boxes; getting closer!
So how are the leaves turning in your part of the world?
That's it for today from . . .

15 comments:

Tombstone Livestock said...

Leaves are starting to fall (more work) and the weather has cooled, I might survive this year after all.

C-ingspots said...

Such pretty chickens!! What exactly is, a "flock block"? I've noticed that we have some leaves changing colors, but you're right in that they're falling like crazy! What do you do with all your leaves - besides chicken fodder? I'm looking for leaves to add to my compost pile.

Michelle said...

Yeah for relief, TL!

Michelle said...

The Flock Block is a Purina supplemental feed that I tried when Wilco had them on sale. Wish I'd gotten more, because the chickens love them!

Unfortunately we don't do anything with all our leaves except blow them out of the way. The sheep eat the ones they have access to, but it would be great to rake them up and keep them dry for coop bedding and garden mulch like Leigh does (5 Acres and a Dream blog). But I can't accomplish all that's on my plate now! Off to prep the last dehydrator load of prunes....

Mary Ann said...

I tried a flock block both inside and outside and man, the mice and rats had a HEYDAY! I'm glad your chickens like yours, and I love the speckled sussex... I have only had one many years ago, and you rarely see them around here.

Mama Pea said...

Our leaves hit their prime color about a week or so ago and now our windy weather is stripping them off the trees in short order. The ones that are left are still providing nice color though.

Wow, you have BIG trees in your sheep pasture!

Michelle said...

I'm so glad we don't have a rodent problem here, Mary Ann! I don't know if it's our good mouser Oreo, or what.

Michelle said...

We had a stiff east breeze (unusual direction for this time of year, as it's the "dry" direction) a couple days this week as well, which has contribute to the leaf fall here. And yes, we do have some good-sized trees!

Cloverleaf Art & Fibre said...

I hadn't thought of fall leaves as supplemental food for sheep before. Do you think they need to still be somewhat green to be palatable?
Of course it would take ten of our prairie trees to equal one of your west coast beauties in leaf supply!

Tina T-P said...

That last picture of the moon is a beauty! T.

Leigh said...

We've been having leaves fall too, without much color yet. Funny, but I've attributed it to too much rain, LOL. Very interesting about your chickens and very good idea about the wire cage as a barrier. Things like that really help. BTW, almost all my hens prefer to lay under the next boxes. :)

Pamela said...

Brassy looks so beautiful hiding under the box. Like she needs to be petted. :-) I'd probably wish I haddn't, eh?

Michelle said...

My sheep hoover them up even when crispy. Might depend on the variety; ours are big-leaf maples.

Michelle said...

Thanks, Tina. That was taken the morning after some disappointing night shots!

Michelle said...

Oh, none of them are that fierce, especially the new girls. She might not hold still for you, but she wouldn't peck.