Sunday, September 28, 2008

Rabbits and chickens all around...

It was a pretty quiet weekend here, but we got quite a bit of work done on cleaning and rearranging the barn, making room and arrangements to move the three week old pullets and broilers from the office outside. The pullets now occupy a small enclosure under the unoccupied side of the new growout rabbit cages, and the broilers are in a setup just inside the main barn door.

We had the luck to pick up ten bales of really nice timothy/grass hay for a great deal, and took the time to do some cleaning and rearranging in the main barn section, clearing enough space to stack all the bales right inside of the door, and finding enough space to lay everything out in a much more organized fashion.

The picture below is what you see when you first open the barn door now. In the foreground on the left is the space the broilers now occupy - they'll stay here for a bit over a month before being butchered. To the right, just out of sight, is where the hay is stacked. Also on the right is where the feed is stored. Directly back are three of the current seven cages - Buck, our new blue otter doe, and, in the corner, is Amber. We'll be constructing another six foot long double doe cage here shortly, and it will replace Amber's current cage, and add another cage to the mix.

The cage just visible in the lower right corner of the picture below is the edge of Buck's cage. The main space of the barn makes an "L" shape around the chicken's area, and this is the short leg. Cocoa and Lily reside in the double cages along the right, and the cages along the left, where a couple of little curious buns are peaking out, is the new growout setup we installed last week. Cocoa's litter of eight is in there now(7 weeks old), and it's under the back section that our pullets are brooding.

And, here are our newest additions to the herd. This is the blue otter - she has a temporary reprieve - as we've decided to hold off making the final decision to send her to freezer camp until after we get a litter from her. We haven't named her yet, but she's an absolute cutey! She's fourteen weeks old, so we'll probably see about breeding her when we breed Lily back next time.

This is our newest addition - she's what's called a broken blue, and her coat almost looks like she has wings on her back.

And, last, but far from least, here's a shot of Lily's litter. Believe it or not, there's ten little kits in there. There's three black ones and the rest look to be castors.

I think that'll be all for this post. We've been up to alllll sorts of stuff, including canning more than 18 quarts of applesauce...and that's with a full bushel left to process! I'll try to post more later in the week :)

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