Saturday, July 7, 2012

Broiling and steamed

No, this post is not about food. "Broiling" is about temperatures in excess of 100 degrees every day for about a week now. Today is supposed to get to 111 degrees, and it was 101.3 at 10:13 this morning, which was not what I wanted to see.

Combine these temperatures with no rain for more than two weeks, and what do you get? The grass is turning brown, and on a farm, that is not a cosmetic complaint. We are going to start watering a couple areas of pasture. Of course the garden is not happy either, so we have been watering the vegetables plants for awhile already.

So far the animals are doing okay, although I did have one goat that quit eating. Earlier this week I realized she had a pretty heavy load of parasites, so I treated her for that, but she still didn't regain her appetite. I took her to the U of I vet clinic yesterday, and they couldn't find anything wrong with her, so I'm assuming that the weather is just making it harder for her to recover. We've put her in the barn office with an air conditioner until tomorrow when the heat wave is supposed to break.

"Steamed" in today's title is about how mad I am that something -- I'm assuming another raccoon (or two) -- has completely wiped out our flock of heritage turkeys. We found the remains of three, but we haven't seen a live turkey in days. We now have a trap set, but so far, nothing has been caught. The number of chickens and ducks is also decreasing. It seems that coons are bad everywhere this year. We haven't had a problem in about eight years ourselves. A friend was saying that she thinks it was due to our very mild winter and early spring, and I agree. Baby raccoons born at zero degrees are far less likely to survive than those born at 50 degrees.

It is going to be strange without turkeys roaming around. We've had breeding turkeys ever since we moved out here ten years ago. Unfortunately, the hatchery sent us almost all broad breasted turkeys in our order last month, so with only two Spanish black poults, the odds are 50/50 that it's a male and a female. But it's not a great idea to have only one female with a male anyway.

So, for now, there isn't much we can do other than wait for the heat wave to break and the raccoons to wander into the trap.

1 comment:

Carolyn Renee said...

Oh man, this heat has just been a burden on every living thing.

Sorry to hear about your turkeys :(
We haven't had but one raccoon attack this year (not sure why) but there have been years when those buggers will wipe out an entire chicken-tractor full of birds. Hate raccoons, HATE them.

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