somebody asked me the other day through email if i was quitting my blog again. i suppose the rather scattered posts would lead one to believe that the case. it isn't. i have been remiss in my blogging duties only because the farm has taken over. as she does, every summer.
ben hewitt writes in one of his latest posts that he is in a place where the physical is taking precedence over the intellectual. (you should really read his writings by the way. when he isn't consumed by summer he writes beautifully of rural vermont life).
we allow the physical to overtake. and we relish it. hence the quiet.
but i interrupt the physical to give you a bit of what is happening today
today we are consumed with fox/chicken management. the irony is not lost on us that in the same summer that we adopt a wild fox is the same summer in which we lose unprecedented numbers in chicken to lucky's red tailed brethren.
our neighbor says it is the mama fox seeking revenge. or maybe its lucky's playful ghost. we always wondered how we would have introduced lucky to the chickens. i envisioned photos of lucky and one of the chickens sleeping side by side and then moments later the viewfinder filled with an explosion of feathers. no kill, lucky.
we have a fox/chicken issue right now. both of our mama hens were killed in the last week. that left 13 baby chicks motherless. they were such good mamas. mama sister and speckles. we relied so heavily on the mothering by those sweet hens. we think we have now lost 2 more babies and 1 more adult hen. we have been proud to always give our hens complete free range of the farm but it comes at a cost. and we decided today we can't justify that cost any longer. we love these hens. we love the gift of bright orange eggs they give us every day. so we are investing in some fencing. it breaks me to take away their freedom. we will make their pen as expansive and diverse as we are able. we will move it often.
one day on the Future Farm we will have the large animal pens and pastures set up in a way to provide a natural barrier between fox and hen. but we are a ways off from there. we don't want to see our hens go the way of our neighbors'. one started with 30, now they have 2 and buy eggs from us. another started with 60, now they are down to 12.
so bear with my scattered posts as i deal with farm clichés like the Hen and the Fox.
i am not fully abandoning the blog. i am just in the throes of the season. autumn is nearly here. i can smell it in the morning's crisp. i can feel it in the afternoon's hot mint tea. in the post pond shiver. in the pile of blankets on our bed. soon we will be pushed back indoors. reduced to these four walls. soon the Outdoors will be limited to breaking waters and throwing hay and my attention will once again turn inward to this space.
Posted by kate at 12:56 PM