A lot of the biggest problems we’ve ever had on the farm were related to unwanted critters trying to get at the chicken feed. Recently, we put some pullets into a pasture house and put a feeder inside the house with them as part of the transition. Since this was an open-front house, the local crows started coming in for lunch, which scared the pullets. Moving the feeder outside didn’t get rid of the crows, but there’s a lot more room outdoors, and their occasional presence didn’t terrorize the pullets.
I still have the car I learned to drive on — a 1975 VW Rabbit. I like it, and Karen likes it better than I do. It’s a classic economy car, one of the first modern subcompacts. Way back when, it got over 30 MPG pretty regularly.
It hasn’t run in the past couple of years, but I got it running well enough today to get it onto the grass where I could wash it and check it over.
[Edit: Never mind. This batch was a bunch of “Fast Cornish” broilers, which isn’t what we ordered. The real “Slow Cornish” have been far too slow-growing for us, and we have reverted to the faster-growing birds.
Lesson learned: if you tell the hatchery that it’s okay for them to make substitutions, always look at the shipping invoice to see what they actually sent you!
We’ve got the energy crisis, we’ve got the foreign quagmire, we’ve got the wacky economy. Wait a minute — It’s the Seventies all over again! I did the Seventies already! Hey! No flashbacks!
Admittedly, people are getting the details wrong. Hybrid cars that combine fuel economy and conspicuous consumption? Gross! A fad for piercings that leaves young people with more holes in them than Bonnie and Clyde? Double gross! What are people smoking?
Anyone with a farm has an ongoing rodent problem. I’ve noticed that other “alternative living” writers deal with this issue the same way they deal with everything — denial. (Of course, it helps that most of their readers live in the city.)
Once you’ve had an outbreak of rats in your brooder house and lose a whole batch of chicks to them (and you will — everything happens to you eventually), you won’t be able to regain the live-and-let-live attitude of yesteryear. But once you decide to make the area around hour house and barn a rodent-free zone, there are good ways and bad ways of doing it.