Thursday, June 16, 2011

Circle of Life

I follow several blogs. Most of them have something to do with homeschooling, firefighters, or farming. There is one blog follow about a farming family (her name also happens to be Amy). In one of her recent posts she shared this about her life:
"Sometimes when asked about the farm, I say, “Nothing’s going on,” but that’s a lie: something’s always dying, about to die, got out of the fence, or in the case of our goose who wouldn’t stop messing on the driveway, got shot and fed to the pig."

I had to laugh when I read this, because it is so true. Our farm is all about the learning curve. Oh, we read up about a project with books from the library, we Google it, we talk with other farmers. But then we do it, and it's nothing like the books, Google, or the other farmers. We have some very expensive turkey, chicken, and veal for our efforts.

And while we often have something dying or about to die, we just as often have something being born. Just this past week we lost all but one of our turkey chicks. In the span of six hours they went from healthy and happy, to not-so-happy and dead. We boiled an egg yolk and mashed them up with goat milk and fed the lethargic turkeys with an eye dropper. We mixed up some antibiotic and electrolytes and fed them that as well. And for all of our efforts, one lived. There is a saying about chickens: A sick chicken, is a dead chicken. Apparently the same holds for turkeys. (And just in case you're wondering there is a similar saying for sheep: Sick Sheep Seldom Survive)

While we were trying to keep the turkeys alive, the chicks were hatching in the incubator. Four in all. Cute, fluffy, little things. At this point we don't know if they are roosters or hens. We don't even know what breed they are as we have two roosters in the coop: a White Silkie and a White Rock mixbreed. We know one of the chicks is a Leghorn cross, because it came from a white egg.

Given our track record, they are probably all roosters.
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