Cedar run

Critters

Every home needs some critters to keep you company.

 

Isis Cat

In August 2006 we adopted two furry friends--a brother and sister who just (ok, literally) reached out to us. Isis is cuddly with tremendous personality and a purr that has made us wonder if we occasionally violate noise ordinances. P.S. In this picture, she's laying in the open dryer.

 

 

Merlin Cat

 

Her brother, Merlin, is probably the softest cat we have ever touched. Together, they keep the staff busy letting them in and out (and in and out...). 

 

Doogie Dog

 

Doogie (2008-2016)

Our wonderful dog, Doogie, passed away after a battle with lymphoma. He was the best of companions and protector of the farm. He rejoiced in chasing deer and squirrel from his property. Well-mannered and smart, he knew come, sit, down, stay, heel, and so many others, as well as the all important dinner, treat, bone and toy. With hackles raised and ferocious barks, he would warn intruders that they were on his property and then, after looking at us to see if the intruder was friend or foe, this gentle soul would greet friends with tail wagging and pleas to be petted. His greatest delight was in racing against the ATV, through the woods, his deep bark echoing off the trees. His eyes would shine with joy, for he always won the race. Or was it tug of war, dropping “the toy” on our laps, insistent that it was time to play. So many things made him happy. But always it involved being with Andy and Karen, his pack. Doogie, our sweet wiggle butt, you loved us as fiercely as we loved you. If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. Andy and I will miss you so very much. Rest in peace.

 

Chicks

Once the chicken house was done, we acquired a collection of baby chicks. It's a little different getting a phone call from the post office at 7 AM letting you know your chickens have arrived. They spent a few days in the great room under a heat lamp and within a week they moved to their own new construction. They grew up quickly though.

 

ChickensDelivered April 10, 2007, the pooping peepers…er, chickens, have grown up and are marvelously successful layers, as those of you who have purchased our delicious brown eggs can attest to.  Free-range (confined only when unmonitored so as to reduce their destruction of Karen’s flower and vegetable beds), the chickens feed off the greens, seeds and insects of the pastures, forest and yard, as well as having a constant supply of Purina Layena, a grain-based chicken feed that contains no animal protein.  Of course, there are the daily treats of fruits, vegetables and grains; strawberries in the Spring, watermelon in the Summer and warm rice with cottage cheese in the Winter are particular favorites.  Here they are, all grown up:

 

Chicken Tractor

In June 2009, we decided to reduce our flock and give the hen yard a rest. After 2 years of constant chicken activity, the yard definitely needs a rest. Keeping only 6 of the eldest hens, we moved them into a chicken tractor we built over a weekend. They'll be able to move across the yard, munching bugs and vegetation in their travels, without destroying Karen's garden beds.

 

Guinea Chicks

Our first attempt at incubating eggs, on the 8th of October we successfully hatched 7 out of 12 guinea fowl eggs. Here is the beginning of our 2010 insect control system.

 

 

Guinea Fowl

 

The guineas (1 girl and 6 boys) are growing up beautifully. They now venture outside in a fenced in area. They have even started making (loud) guinea sounds. By the way, they already love crickets.

 

 

Guinea Chicks

They found our snow in January 2010 to be quite an experience.

Unfortunately, owl predation and cars took away the entire flock. In late May, 2010, the last guinea (the female) was taken, in the night, by an owl which swooped in and carried her out of the Mimosa tree where she was roosting. Our efforts to train them in safety could not overcome their natural instincts to wander far and roost up high.

 

Guinea Fowl

 

On February 7th, 2010 we received a shipment of new baby chicks to add to our flock of Chickens. They are in the "nursery" in the great room for a couple of weeks before venturing into colder climate of the nursery in the chicken house.

 

2010 Chickens

Popcorn, one of our roosters, showed his colors (for an all white Polish chicken, that is) on May 28, 2010 with his first feeble crowing. If his fellow chickens hadn't pecked all the feathers off his head, he'd be an impressive bird. Then later, June 26, 2010 we heard another, deeper crow. This huge, black Cochin we named Sirius Black. The two boys seem seem to get along.

On July 12, 2010 the hen house yielded a very small white egg laid on the floor. Our pullets are starting to become hens. All but two of them, that is.

 

3 Goats

 

Fantasy, Corona and Cassie add their charm to the Run on August 18, 2010. Nigerian Dwarf goats, they love their new barn and the tons of weeds to eat in the Lower Pasture.