All The Helpers

After a long, frigid Virginia winter and lots of deep litter in the chicken coop, it was finally time to pull out all the layers upon layers of chicken poo from underneath the roosting bars in the roost.

I did not take a picture of what that looks like, because, well, because it’s basically 5 months worth of straw and chicken poop that have been continuously turned and refreshed with more straw to continuously add insulation and warmth throughout the winter.

But today was the day to finally get that pulled out and lay a whole new layer of fresh straw down for our gals that live in the roost.

The best way to describe the events of the day would be to hear a tune. But since I don’t know if or how I can add music to my post, you’ll just have to picture it in your mind.

Imagine you’re in the Big Top of a circus and that all-familiar circus jingle starts playing. So as you read my description of the days events, keep the circus music on repeat in the back of your mind.

Boys take a wagon full of fresh straw, an empty wheel barrow, and a few tools to begin the chore. Goats try to escape the yard as two wheeled carts come through the gate. Boys wrangle the goats to stay in the yard. Boys park the carts near the chicken coop. Goats jump into the cart of straw and begin eating it.

Boys try in vain to keep the goats out of the straw cart and eventually give up. Load by load, the wheelbarrow is filled and taken outside of the fenced area to be dumped. It is such a large amount, my compost bin won’t hold it all, so I have them start a new pile where the goats and chickens cannot get to it.

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Meanwhile, the boys had left the side door to the coop opened while they went to dump dirty straw and this happened.

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And then they went through the chicken door and entered the coop and run.

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Not pictured is both goats underneath the coop. Also not pictured are six out of nine hens trying to sit in the nesting boxes while they are being cleaned out.

After they finish pulling out the dirty straw, it’s time to add some fresh straw to the coop and nesting boxes.

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The boys locked the hens in their coop so they could leave the run open and add fresh straw. The problem is that with an open door to the run, the goats can also go in.

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And since the goats are enjoying the cart of straw, the dog decides he wants in on that action, too.

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You may notice that only our two does are actively engaged in the events of the day. That is because our buck Boaz is 8 weeks old this week, approximately one week away from physically being capable of impregnating a doe. Since the bucks’ yard and barn are complete, we went ahead and moved our buck and wether to their new yard. I can only imagine how much more challenging this clean up event would have been with two more goat helpers. 🙂

{By the way, you can stop replaying that circus music in your head now. Hilarity of events has ceased.}

Finally the boys finished cleaning the coop and then begged for 10-minutes to play with Reuben in the barn. I decided to allow the boys to close the barn door and let the cat out of the crate for a few minutes. It was raining really hard by this point, so we had the does closed in the barn with us.

So how did Reuben’s first face to face with the does go?

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It went quite well! He took time to sniff both gals. Princess did not leave her safe spot. Mizi followed the cat around but maintained a safe distance. On a side note, the goats love to hang out on the miking stand. We have to keep it in the shed because we do not have another location to store it right now. This is why we trekked 2-hours north to buy a metal goat stanchion last week, because it has a grate that allows those lovely dark chocolate pellets to fall right through. 🙂

Reuben was super happy and affectionate and loved all the attention he got. It was tough putting him back in the crate, but we know we must for his safety. He went back into his crate gracefully, it was tough for me to do it because he was so happy being out of it. Reuben has an appointment with the vet tomorrow for a health check and to schedule his neuter. I think once he is recovered from his neuter we should be ok to give him his freedom. He seems so happy and comes to us every time we call him.

I’m planning to be back on here later this week to tell you all about our baby chicks. Thanks for stopping by today.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. OMG! lol. Sounds like busy day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. triciasengul says:

      Yes, always busy, but laughter certainly makes the days better!

      Like

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