Thursday, May 24, 2012

Other happenings

I've got vegetables started in the yard and in the greenhouse right now. There are suddenly more greens and lettuces than I know what to do with.The kale is out of control, but we found out from a friend that the flowers are good on salads. These days I try to serve meals on a bed of greens. The boys are getting used to it.

There are also the more popular summer crops in the works like tomatoes, carrots, peas and cucumbers.

This year we also have Tilapia for the first time (pictured below). They need warm water so the setup is in the laundry room for now. I'm not sure how long this is going to work out....

Anyhow it is a 3 barrel setup -- one filter, one with plants, and one with about 25 fish. The water circulates between the barrels and is heated. It is a work in progress -- Richard has spent countless hours on this.

Also pictured below is what we hope will be a breeding tank with both Pink and Nile Tilapia.

The fish are growing fast -- they were fingerlings in January and now they're pan-sized. We'll probably start to harvest the biggest ones in about a month. The idea was that it would be great to have fresh fish on hand. I hate trying to buy fish at the supermarket!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Flock of three

Two weeks ago we were worried about losing a chicken who had a prolapse. She recovered and is back with the flock.

However today we ended up having to get rid of another favorite hen, Walter, who had taken a dominant role and started crowing this spring. We took Walter to the farm where two of our other chickens are living. So now we're down to 3 hens (from front to back)  Ginger, Mary Ann, and Fancy Pants Johnson. Most hens don't crow, so hopefully we won't have this problem again.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Emergency treatment for prolapse

The other day we noticed one of our favorite hens Fancypants Johnson, looked like she was having some digestive problems. The other chickens looked normal, so I was just hoping it would resolve itself. Then today we noticed she has a prolapsed oviduct -- it looks like a hemorrhoid. Poor thing. The prognosis isn't too great -- they can have difficulty laying eggs, other chickens tend to peck at them, etc. This afternoon we cleaned her up and put her in isolation in a dark shed to slow down egglaying and give her a chance to heal.
Update: Yesterday she looked about the same. She laid an egg which doesn't help. Today there seems to be less swelling, so I hope she's healing up.