Monday, June 28, 2021

From Death Valley back to the Willamette

After three days of blistering, record-shattering temperatures, the wind came roaring in from the WSW this afternoon, dropping the temperature nearly 50 degrees in a matter of hours. It also knocked out our power for a couple of those hours, but thankfully after it blew out the worst of the heat.

Unfortunately, we did have one heat casualty. This morning one of my beautiful Australorp hens was dead on the henhouse floor. We were worried about shutting the girls in last night – it never dropped below 90° – but didn't want to tempt any predators.
One  of the five black hens is gone now

This afternoon I surveyed the garden. The vegetables were all in decent to good shape, but I think the heat sucked most of the juice from the strawberries and caneberries. At least I got one little taste of black raspberries before they were toast!

baby Matt's Wild Cherry tomatoes!

The ONE silver lining to the weather was how fast laundry dried. I usually use my dryer to get the wrinkles out of clothes and then hang them on a drying rack inside; everything dried in a fraction of the time outside in the heat – and smelled great to boot!

Poppy was the one creature seemingly unfazed by the heat. She was always up for outdoor time, chasing squirrels and carrying sticks as usual, the only difference her hanging tongue. We should all be so fit and lean!

That's it for now from . . .


Leigh said...

You got our typical summer weather! I hope that cooling wind means it doesn't come back. So sorry about your chicken. It's tough to lose them under any circumstances, but I know this is a heartbreak.

Retired Knitter said...

It is crazy weather we now have in almost all areas.

Mama Pea said...

Good golly, the heat you're having this summer! Your flock of chickens is small enough that you'll miss the one hen you lost. When you said Poppy enjoys carrying sticks . . . "stick" is an understatement!

Debbie said...

Poppy is on board with the idea of go big or go home!

Glad to hear that temperatures have cooled. Sorry about the hen.

Outdoor clothes drying is the best!

Tim B. Inman said...

I just despise heat! So sorry you've had to endure it. I'd consider a cabin in the north woods for summer, but Florida for the winter? Sorry, no. After we moved back to SW Iowa after living in Wisconsin for 25 years, I often said that I was 'smart enough to move out of this place, but dumb enough to move back.' Our recent weather has proved that statement over and again.

My birthday is in the middle of July. Usually, it rains on my birthday, and then gets up to the high 90's without cooling off at night. Great for corn, and maybe that's what makes me 'corny.' UUUUUGGGGGHHHH is my reaction.

I have Speckled Sussex chickens for my hens right now. The book says they can do winter just fine, but will suffer in summer. We always seem more concerned for our animals in winter time, but, like you, I've had more losses due to heat than cold. Sorry for your loss. We do the best we can to give them the best life possible - still, 'stuff' happens. Cheers anyway. Hang in there.

Michelle said...

Leigh, we're still going to have above-average temperatures in the 80s and 90s, but the 100-TEENS are gone now. I didn't realize you got those extremely high temperatures there! I do know you deal with much higher humidity.

Yep, Elaine; those jet streams are all-awobble now and predictability is out the window!

Mama Pea, I'm glad I agreed to get four chicks from my friend; I figured with the age of my little flock there might be more attrition before the new ones move here. And yes, Poppy is ambitious – but that is a well-seasoned and therefore relatively lightweight limb. 😉

Debbie, the only thing smallish about Poppy is her size! I hope you got some cooling, too. I will probably use my neglected laundry line more often now that I've dug out my clothespins.

Tim, we are usually blessed with cool nighttime temperatures here; the previous record high overnight low was 74 degrees. To not drop below 90 the night before last was, well, unprecedented, like all the other record-setting temperatures we endured. I am so for your unfortunate timing of birth – and even sorrier for your mother; ha! Summers are no time for third trimesters. Speckled Sussex have gorgeous plumage, but Australorps are my favorite chicken breed; they have big, beautiful eyes, a lovely shape, iridescent feathers . . . and I'm just partial to black critters. 😊

Jeanne said...

Michelle, I'm so glad you got your cooling weather when you did! We finally got ours today! Whew! What a relief!

I'm so sorry you lost your lovely hen. That's tough.

Poppy is such a character! I always get a chuckle out of her carrying her "big sticks" around! The one pictured above is so long, you'd think it would give her problems, even though it's light in weight!

Mokihana said...

Gosh, wasn't the heal horrible?? I've been so grateful for the cooler days and nights.

I couldn't save the baby swallows; they perished in their nest box in the heat. I am bereft.

Michelle said...

Jeanne, Poppy's long sticks cause logistical problems for her, but she perseveres!

Oh Mokihana, I am SO sorry about the barn swallows. We have a nest in our barn; the parents are still setting so I hope the eggs are okay. They are not only beautiful birds, but so helpful in helping control the bugs.

FullyFleeced said...

funny about Poppy not being fazed by the heat. Our tiny Gus was the same way. But of course he wasn't out in it full-time like the sheep and chickens. We were all hiding from the sun as much as possible, and he'd be laying in the yard basking.