Chicken business

We never thought it would come but spring is truly here. The run-off alone has created flooding down in our valley on a scale we haven’t seen before, so we’re getting about in tall wellies no matter what kind of day it is. Up at the house things are pretty dry in comparison, and our Americauna chickens are making the most of every single day, treating foraging as the Olympic sport they know it to be. No wonder they tuck themselves up in their coop by 5 o’clock when the sun is still high in the sky, they must be plum exhausted.

The evidence of bark stripping by other creatures is everywhere, testament to such a long winter and we’re getting to grips with some potential losses that we hadn’t seen coming. Our beloved manchu cherries, only three years old, really took a hit (they normally do very well in the winter and we just didn’t think to give them extra protection going into this one). We’ve ordered some replacements, but I’m still hoping that they may survive (probably not very realistic, but hope is second nature in growing anything).

I’ll leave you with some photos of our little flock engaging in what Sailors Small Farm so aptly calls ‘chicken business’.

Chickens foraging under the trees

Americauna chickens foraging in early spring

Americauna chickens foraging in early spring

Americauna chickens foraging in early spring

14 thoughts on “Chicken business

    1. I know, I never thought I’d be so thrilled to see plain old grass again! Yes, the cherry trees are a blow, but what can you do – we win some, we lose some, don’t we.

    1. We gardeners are crazy with hope aren’t we, and it’s so like parenting in that way! Thanks for the kind words and all the best in your own growing efforts 🙂

    1. They truly do; you can’t work the land without hope. I never knew how amazing it could be observing chickens until we got our own flock – I like your analogy with therapy, it’s truly relaxing. So true about the yolk!

  1. Those chickens are absolutely beautiful! Ahh, green grass is like a breath of fresh air!
    We are flooded here – the house is okay. Hopefully lots of organic deposits from the river in the garden! Luckily, I planted my garlic on higher ground last fall and it is completely out of the flood waters.
    Maybe you could try severely pruning the Cherry tree….?

    1. Thank you Linda! Oh yes, the green grass is a balm isn’t it. I can imagine you’ve got some real flooding at your spot and so glad to hear your house is untouched. Great news for your garlic too 🙂 Sadly, our cherries are very young and small and I’m not sure they are up for it. We’ll wait and see!

  2. Fingers tightly crossed for your poor cherry trees. Wow, haven’t seen good old green grass on your blog for a while. I’m guessing Reggie (and maybe the rest of the family) have been having a good roll in it 🙂

    1. Thanks Sas; there isn’t much more we can do than finger crossing. We’re just focusing on the good and revelled in 24 degrees today! (It’s down to 4 degrees tomorrow though!!) Reggie did his first fetching in the pond this year and thoroughly enjoyed it.

  3. Glad to hear that Spring has come to your neck of the woods. I bet you enjoy seeing the chickens out and about again. Sorry to read that some of your trees were victimized by hungry critters. I’ve heard that it’s a bigger problem this year. No one, though, would have predicted a Winter like the one we just sent packing. (I say that, knowing full-well that it’s snowing right now.) I hope your losses aren’t nearly as bad as you suspect. 🙂

    1. The chickens are having a blast; every day they seem to go further afield and they are a delight. They will be shocked tomorrow, as our temps will drop twenty degrees overnight and they are calling for snow/freezing rain. I’m quite sure they will choose to stay inside. You know how it goes! The pendulum at this time of year is wild and after such a winter it’s even more extreme. Warm wishes!

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