Without divulging the depths of my depravity, I’ll suffice to say that my world is very small right now. I would say that 1/3 of my world right now is chickens, 1/3 is my husband and the other 1/3 is too scary to talk about.
Though I know how fundamentally wrong it is on many levels, I’m having a difficult time being patient until the time we will be up in Arkansas full time. It feels as if my whole life is on hold, until it will ‘begin’.
I cannot convey just how much I’m looking forward to starting our new life in the Little House. It’s not just a different location, either. I’m looking forward to a different way of life. I feel the Lord has a whole new set of plans for us there, and I’m excited to find out what that is.
“Hope deferred maketh the heart sick:
but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.” ~Proverbs 13:12
I said all that to say this: Please indulge me with one more chicken post. The material is running thin.
I mentioned I’m on a quest to raise my chickens more naturally. Well, the other day I saw this beautiful picture of a pumpkin, beautifully split , the seedy intestines splayed over the sides, and chickens rabidly attacking it. They were attacking that pumpkin with relish! “Hey,” I thought. “That is a really neat idea, ” and I envisioned all of the wonderful photos I would get of my chickens’ delight.
When I was at the grocery store yesterday, they had pumpkins for $3.88 – a small price to pay for such nutrition and gastronomical delight for my chickens. Pumpkin seeds are supposed to be a great anti-parasitic, and we all have seen the graphic display of the parasites lurking in the guts of my chickens. “A few pumpkin seeds might be good for them,” I thought.
It went over like a lead balloon. They were curious, for sure. They sort of pecked at it like a child being forced to try broccoli, actually. The new hens were the most interested. I did get a few very nice shots. It was worth wallowing on the ground in chicken poop to get them.
I mentioned in another post that we have very few predators around here, and that we saw a hawk one time. I have been going outside about an hour before dusk since we got the new chickens. I just want to keep an eye on them, plus, they have to be put into the hen house at dusk…they still haven’t quite gotten the routine down.
Lo and Behold, as I was sitting out there, one of the hens gave her warning call. (After a while, you learn their different calls and what they mean). All of the hens were frozen. Some of them were looking up. I looked all around and I didn’t see anything. Eula was in ‘time out’ in the run for bullying the younger hens.
All of the sudden, all of the hens made a bee line to the bush for protection. Eula, in the run, was going crazy and cackling. She had protection underneath the hen house, but was still going crazy.
I went back into the run and looked up on the light pole, which is on the other side of the fence, and there was a huge hawk! It was much bigger than the one I had seen two years before. This one probably could have carried off one of the smaller hens. I tried scaring it off, and it didn’t budge. It just sat up there looking at me.
It finally took off toward the corner of the house by the bush that the chickens had sought refuge under. I picked up a piece of an old stump and threw it in its direction, and thankfully it kept going…but it kept flying from light pole to light pole, and though it was at a distance, it didn’t leave. The chickens were still on alert.
I finally took the young hens and put them on the roost, then herded the rest of them in for a slightly early night. The hawk was unexpected and distressing, to say the least. I didn’t get a picture.
The instinct that God has placed in animals is amazing to me. I’ve never seen it displayed so much as I have with my chickens. It leaves me in awe.
Yesterday, I heard about a wildfire that was way Southeast of us. They said that we would be seeing some smoke come our way, but that it would be very high. I sort of filed that away in the back of my mind.
Yesterday at dusk, I was outside again, and the the hens were on alert again. They were all stiff. Their wariness hung in the air. It wasn’t the same as with the hawk the evening before. They were still feeding in the yard, but they were moving tentatively and looking around a lot. I looked and looked for the hawk again but couldn’t see anything. Then, off in the distance (to the Southeast) I saw darkness in the sky. It looked sort of like an approaching front, but from the wrong direction. Then I got a faint whiff of smoke. It was the wildfire and smoke that had the chickens on alert.
That’s my chicken story for the day. I know most of you who are subscribed signed on to hear about our house in Arkansas, so I apologize for the delay. I appreciate each and every one of you so much. I love writing and taking photos, and I like sharing it with whoever will pay attention. It’s probably the ‘middle child’ in me saying, “Look at ME! Look at ME!”
I love you all, and hope that each of you have a wonderful day today on this beautiful, glorious Saturday.
And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; for You, Jehovah, have not forsaken those who seek You.