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New Hens

Welcome back!

Fern hopes you had a fun Dr. Seuss Day last Friday.
She is really a Polish chicken, not a Dr. Seuss chicken,
but she reminds me of the birds I see in Dr. Seuss books.

We got 5 new hens last week.
They looked terrible!

The family that gave them to us didn’t have time to take care of them anymore. These chickens were always fed well, given plenty of food and water, and had a nice coop to live in.

You can see the new hens near some of our older hens.
Do you see only 4 new hens in the photos? One of the new black hens died because she was so sick.
Why were they so sick when they had good food, water, and shelter?
They were sick because there were too many chickens in such a small space. The family had over 20 chickens in a space that was only big enough for 10 chickens. Each chicken needs 2 – 3 square feet of room to live. 
If you look at the tile floor in your classroom you can find a spot that is 3 tiles tall by 3 tiles long. That’s enough space for one chicken to live and be healthy.
Our chicken coop is almost big enough for all our chickens. Why do ours look healthy?
They are allowed out of their coop every day. They have a nice pasture and a barn to roam around. They have plenty of room. We only lock them in the coop at night to protect them from other animals that might hurt them or eat them while they are sleeping.
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I don’t see many birds besides chickens in the spring because my bird feeder blew out of a tree last fall and broke.

I tried to fix it, but it fell apart and I threw it away.

Sometimes I see sparrows, chickadees, and a lot of doves. We also have magpies. I don’t have photos because they don’t come close to the house.

We have a beautiful raven that comes by once in a while. There is a hawk that comes, too. While those birds are beautiful, I don’t encourage them to stay around on the farm because they are predators and will eat the chickens.

We usually get two duck eggs a day.
Some days we only get one duck egg.

Today I found one duck egg in the corner of the stall…..

and one duck egg in with a few chicken eggs.
Can you tell which one is the duck egg?
We love to bring the animals to visit at the end of school.
If you are well-behaved then you also get to pet them.
If you aren’t well-behaved then you only get to look at them.

I hope that you will learn how to be respectful and kind to the other children in your class, and to your teachers before the end of school. Last year the children got to pet a calf, a chicken, some goat kids, Clover, and a few baby lambs.

If I hear from your teachers that you don’t know how to treat others kindly and with respect then I won’t bring lambs at all. I’ll bring a few other animals, but you won’t be able to pet them because I won’t be able to trust you around them.

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Today I am planting more seeds.
I want to have some plants ready to go in the garden when the weather gets warm.
Quin and Xander are coming to help this afternoon.
See how big the herbs have grown!

Do you think it looks funny to have the light tilted? When seeds are started indoors the light should only be about 1″ away from the seeds, or the top of the plants. The plants on the right are taller so the light has to be higher on that side. If the light is too far away the plants get ‘leggy’. They get tall and scrawny and don’t have enough strength in their stem to hold up the leaves very well.

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Annie and Misty love to get pets in the morning.
I love petting them when I come out.

I hope you have a great week!

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