Open Does, Turkey for Dinner

Well, I just went through my list of Senior Does and I only have five that are open right now (of the ones I’m wanting to breed).  Now to figure out who their best matches might be:

White River’s Kenya (Black) – she’s gorgeous – just needs a more massive head.   She missed on my first try of breeding her.   Decided to breed her to White River’s Troy.

RA’s Capsaicin (Red) – was bred to ARR’s Angry Squirrel (REW) for Abby’s science project.  He was still on the young side when we did that breeding, so I’m not surprised things didn’t happen.  Will repeat the breeding.

GBF’s Tahlia (Tort) – I thought I bred her, but can’t find my notes!  Ahhh.  I hate it when that happens.  Now what to do…

White River’s Cora (SS) – thought I had bred her also to GBF’s Caden (carries REW or sable gene)…  where is that piece of paper!!!   Got one live kit from this same cross that I fostered to Triskit – and of course, it’s black (so far anyway).

GBF’s Cadee (Tort) – Poor Cadee.  Her first litter and she had a stuck kit.  She pushed all day and finally at 10:00 pm had delivered it enough that I could pull it.   She is out of White River’s Arden x THF Saynora’s Antigone.   She has a substantial body but lacks in the crown, so need to fix that.  The plan was to breed her back to Arden, but that can’t happen now.   So, Plan B.   I think we’ll go with WR Troy.

GBF’s Carmen (Black) – not quite senior yet, but want to get the ball rolling on her.  Breeding her back to her sire.

Have some does due:

Freeman’s Cocoa is due tomorrow.  I don’t know… she’s not acting like she’s gonna have babies.  Did see her in the nestbox this evening though.  I’m still not very good at palpating – I don’t feel any babies in her.  But, I’ve been wrong before.  She was bred to White River’s Dino.

Hunneshagen’s Salome (EA) is due Sunday.  She has been carrying hay around in her mouth for over a week now.  I gave her a nestbox early so she could start building her nest.  Oh, the hair is flying.  This is the first time I’ve bred her, so I hope all goes well.  ELS Mr. SandMan is the father-to-be.

GBF’s Topeka is due the 3rd.  She missed the first time I bred her.  She was bred to her littermate brother, Tobias, so we’ll see what happens – trash or treasure.  Man, she sure is grouchy!  And has a big ol’ belly going on.  Gave her a nest box today and she hopped right in.

Little Bit is the spunk-meister now.   He is still in the house with one of Baron’s kits and one of Charlee’s.  When I open the cage door, he is right there ready to hop out.  He is ALLL about his carrot at night, let me tell ya.  Cute little cuss.

Turkey Business

We took 8 of our largest Bourbon Red turkeys into the butcher this week (but not Tom or his two ‘girls’).  I baked one tonight for dinner.  Yum.  Fresh turkey.  We had 24 total running around.  So, now we are down to 16.  I want to keep 2 toms (including “Tom”) and 3 hens over the winter (including the 2 hens from last spring).  That way each of the girls can take a pair to the fair next year.  I’m keeping an extra hen ‘just in case’.   So, that gets us to 11 birds that we will take in around Thanksgiving.

Turkeys are the oddest creatures.  Whenever anyone comes up the drive, they come rushing out to see who it is.  They seem to be particularly fond of the UPS man!  It’s like they are the Welcoming Committee.  People who are not used to turkeys are a bit frightened, as they do look and sound fairly imposing when all the tom’s are displaying and gobbling.  When I go out in the morning to do chores, they come tearing towards me, making all their funny noises… where’s our food… where’s the grain??  Have you ever seen a turkey run?  It’s kind of like watching Jurassic Park.  :)

Young Bourbon Red Turkeys For Sale

Bourbon Red Tom Turkey - a little over 1 year old

Bourbon Red Tom Turkey - a little over 1 year old

Bourbon Reds are a heritage breed turkey recognized by the APA.  They are a very pretty bird for either exhibition or just for the backyard. They are active foragers and able to fly so that they can roost high off the ground, where they are safer from predators (ours roost in the barn rafters).   They are also quite hardy (our trio made it through the winter, free to come and go as they wished in the barn).  One of our hens and Tom both survived animal attacks from either the local coons or coyotes relatively unscathed – except for feather lose.

Our one hen has been very broody for the past month and hatched her first poult today actually.  We’ve hatched approximately 30 of the hens eggs in the incubator this spring.

You can contact us via our Contact Page on the Green Barn Farm Website if you’re interested in purchasing some of these beautiful birds.

Chicks Are Hatching

The incubator has been up and running for awhile now.  We have been hatching Buff Bantam Silkies, Quail Antwerp Belgians and Bourbon Red Turkeys.  The large speckled eggs in the pictures are the turkey eggs – they take 28 days to hatch whereas the chicken eggs only take 21 days.  You can also see a couple of Silkies that have hatched and dried off – waiting for me to take them to the brooder.   The dates on the eggs are the date that we put them into the incubator.   Here are some pictures of a Silkie chick emerging from his confinement:

egg-hatching1

The chick has pecked a complete circle around the top of the egg and is getting ready to "pop the top off".

He's working on it.

He's working on it.

Pushing his way out now.

Pushing his way out now.

"Finally I can stretch out!"

"Finally I can stretch out!"

Wet, free and exhausted.

Wet, free and exhausted.

"Let me catch my breath"

"Let me catch my breath"

It’s a Beautiful Day

Ah.  Sixty degree’s and sunny.  Bliss!  So, why am I sitting inside typing a blog entry?!  Well, there are a few updates to make.

Our ‘goat buddy’ Chad called yesterday offering bottle babies if we wanted them.  He had several does drop triplets and one doe had quads over the weekend.  With the number of goats he has, he can not afford to keep that many babies on a doe, so he keeps the two nicest and offers the others to people as bottle babies.  Abby and I went over after she got home from school to pick out one.  Should have known better!  We ended up bringing home two – a doe and buck.  Both are little Boer goats.  The doe is SO tiny.

Abby was determined to bottle feed the doe by herself and Haley took on the buck.  Well, the little doe, latched right on and didn’t have any problems at all.  Sucked her bottle right down.  The buck, though…. well, he would prefer to starve to death and cause deafness in your ears from his crying.  The same thing happened this morning when I went out to give them their bottles.  The little doe dutifully guzzled, and the little buck let it run down his face.  He will figure it out eventually!

Izzy is recovering very well, thank goodness.  She is perky and eating like a machine.  Whew.  So far, so good.  I’ll be glad when I can stop jabbing needles into her thigh muscles though.  Ouch.

Cinnamon went down last week.  She did something to her hock and can’t stand up very well.  She is on medicines to help reduce the inflammation and pain.  We had to pull her triplets off from her, as they were using her as a  balance beam.  They are NOT happy campers right now.  They are in a separate pen and can see mom across the way, but can’t get to her.  Oh, the noise and crying going on out there.  I have been rotating one baby in with her at a time to nurse.  They are so funny.  They cry that they aren’t with mom.  But when I take them to mom, they look back at their siblings and cry because they miss them.  Then they look at mom and cry.  What to do.   All three can not be with her at once, because they literally topple her over.

Mr. Tom the Bourbon Red turkey has been a bit high-n-mighty lately.  He has found an interest in his two lady friends and is a firm believer in protecting them against anyone and anything under 5′ tall.   Haley and Abby are not very fond of him right now, since he likes to stalk after them.  But,  I’m very happy because I found their first eggs this morning!!  Six of them on top of the straw pile.  So, obviously the two hens have been laying for a few days.  Now I get to crank up the incubator and hope for little poults.

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