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Photos from the Farm #14

Welcome back!

It has been a strange winter so far. It hasn’t been as cold as it usually is in December.
It is colder than spring or fall so we have the water heaters in the buckets, and we put our coats and boots on when we go outside. But we don’t have to dress quite as warmly as we usually do in December.

You asked very good questions last week. I’m sorry I didn’t have time to answer them this week. I promise to answer them next week.

After I give you an update on the chicks, I’ll show you how we keep the water from freezing overnight.

Good morning, chicks! You can see how much they have grown this week. It’s almost time to move them into a bigger brooder.

Since the chicks are in a brooder, it’s easy to pick them up and let you see them.
This is the chick that has a Ameraucana mother and Charlie, the Buff Cochin rooster for a father.

Here is the Buff Cochin chick. Her mother is a Buff Cochin and  Charlie, the Buff Cochin rooster is it’s father.
The next two chicks look almost the same! They look like twins. They both have
 Charlie, the Buff Cochin rooster for a father and their mother is a Barred Rock.

If you can tell some differences between this chick and the one in the picture above, you are very smart! The only difference I can see right now is that the chick in this picture has a few fluffy feathers behind it’s neck.

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 I thought you might like to see the chickens as they come out of the coop in the morning. Can you count how many come out? Can you see Charlie, the rooster, come out?
I counted 17 chickens as they come out of the coop.
Guess what? Three chickens didn’t want to come out yet. Maybe they are afraid of the camera. Don’t worry, they came out later and ate breakfast with the rest of the chickens.
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Even though it’s warmer than usual it still freezes overnight so we need to keep the water heaters in the buckets. This is what our water heaters look like.
Do you see the funny piece of metal that is sitting on the bottom of the water barrel? That is a water heater for farms. This one keeps the chicken water from freezing. Some mornings as you come to school or on the playground you probably find puddles that have frozen. Animals need water every day, just like you do! If their water is frozen they can’t get a drink.

Here are two barrels that have water for the cows (on the right) and the goats (on the left). They plug into an outlet on the post behind. You can’t see the heater, it’s covered in plastic at the bottom of the barrel.

Oh, no! Something is wrong with our water barrel! Can you see the ice on top? It’s time for Matt to fix this barrel because the plug was broken. Animals are big and rough. Sometimes they pull on things that they shouldn’t pull on. This time they pulled on the electrical cord and broke the end off.

Here is the other type of water heater we use. It is like the one we use in the chicken water, but this one is flat. I like this one better than the one in the chicken water because it lays flat along the bottom. The ducks like to get in and have a bath once in a while and this one stays out of the way.
Did you notice that the duck and the chicken waters are on top of some wood pallets? When they drink they make a mess, especially the ducks. Having the water on top of a pallet keeps a puddle from forming under the water. We don’t want the chickens and ducks to slip on the ice or get cold feet while they are getting their drink. Farm animals don’t wear shoes to keep their feet warm like you do!
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Here are The Twins! This is their favorite spot in the morning. They aren’t really twins. They aren’t even brother and sister. They are the same color and they go everywhere together so we call them The Twins. The one in the back is Scout. The one in the front is JJ. JJ loves to put her nose through the stall door and watch the animals.

The Twins and Miles get brushed every morning. They have their winter coats now. That means they have more hair to keep themselves warm when they are outside. It also means that they shed their hair in the house, too!
If Matt or I brush them every day we have a lot less hair in the house so I don’t have to vacuum as often. One of the reason most moms don’t want a dog in the house is because of all the hair! It’s a lot of work for moms if the children don’t help. 
Next week I’ll be sending some eggs from our chickens for you to look at! I have some duck eggs and turkey eggs to send, too!
I’ll also answer the questions you sent in last week. I’m sorry I didn’t have time to answer them this week, it’s been a very busy week getting ready for Christmas.
Have a great week!

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