Farm Blog 2012

We Have Kids
Posted on June 5, 2012
We now have two registered Nigerian Dwarf doelings.  They came prenamed - Primrose and Love Song.  They are very cute and affectionate, but as Love Song was a bottle-baby, are a little too obsessed with humans.  There's a lot of crying, banging against the porch door, and hopping into the windowsills to get a peek at us.  Hopefully they get more comfortable being independent soon.  In one year, we will have babies to sell and goat milk to drink!!

Hawk Season
Posted on March 8, 2012

Pittsburgh chickenkeepers have been dealing with hawk attacks lately.  It's just that time of year again.  Carrie Junior was attacked today.  She's badly injured with a deep gash, but is alive.  She'll be living in the bathtub infirmary for awhile.

New Chickens' First Egg!
Posted on March 5, 2012

We got our first egg from our youngest group of hens!  Sparkle won the contest with this little bullet egg!

Disappointments, Goodbyes, New Coop, and Website Changes
Posted on February 14, 2012
We've learned not to count our chickens before they hatch.  (You'd think we out of everyone should have known that!)  Our goat reservation didn't end up working out because one of the does didn't have any female babies.  You really need more than one goat because they're social creatures.  We've put in loose reservations for two kids from a farm in West Virginia.  They're due in April and would be ready to bring home in June.  We're going to try to not get too excited about it until it's final.

We had to give up another animal to the urban farm on the river.  (The ducks ended up taking off, recently, actually!  :()  Kabwe started crowing again and it didn't seem like it was just a phase this time.  She was a funny little bird who laid beautiful green eggs, but we couldn't risk complaints from the neighbors, so she had to be re-homed.  Her new name is Hillary Rodham Chicken.

In better news, the new coop is just about done!  Spackle discovered the new nest boxes on her own and has been laying in there for a few weeks!  So smart!  All the birds are sleeping there now.  Not sure how we're going to get rid of the old coop.

Finally, we're making some changes to the website.  It's expanding from just chickens to cover the whole urban farm.  Not that I ever update this thing enough, anyhow.

Eggs, Honey, and Babies
Posted on January 14, 2012

After a long hiatus (molting, changing daylight), the chickens have started laying again!  Spackle has already discovered the new coop (not quite finished) and started laying in the eggbox!  Smart!

Our baby chicks are three-quarter chickens now.   We lost one.   The remaining four are very sweet.  Who will be the first to lay?

I've been working tirelessly on setting up an organic feed buying cooperative among 14 Pittsburgh chicken keepers.  It's been going on since fall and we've already switched feeds two times and are running into more issues.   Very stressful, but hopefully worth it.

This past fall, we did our first honey harvest!  Since we split our first hive, we didn't get that much from either.  Normally, you can get up to 6 gallons from each, but we only got 3.5 gallons total.  It was a bad year for a lot of Pittsburgh beekeepers, we heard.  Still plenty for Christmas presents and tea!  We even tried out making some whipped honey, which involves "infecting" honey with a crystalized starter.  Yum!

And the big news is that we have a reservation for two baby Nigerian Dwarf Goat doelings from CapriGem farm!  They will be born at the end of January and weened by the end of March or early April.  We're busy gathering goat supplies.  So exciting!!

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