It has been a busy evening. I do enjoy that I can come home and get things done on the homestead for an hour or so before the dark and/or the mosquitos chase me inside.
Caboose has been acting unhappy and unwell. She spends a lot of time in the coop, her comb is droopy, and she just has an air of “I want my mommy.” Figuring out what’s wrong with a chicken is usually a tricky thing. One thing I noticed was she had a dirty bum, so tonight she got a bath.
Just like last year, when all the chickens got a bath (click the link for pictures!), I got a tub of warm, soapy water, a washcloth and a towel and cleaned her from head to toe. She actually seemed to enjoy it.
Once she had a clean bum, I checked her vent for mites and was happy to see that is not the problem. On the other hand, that would have been an easy fix.
One towel was not enough, and it got completely soaked before she was dry enough. The water-logged feathers threw off her balance and she was weaving about like she was drunk. I watched her for a long time after putting her back with the other chickens to be sure they didn’t pick on her. I was pleased to see a couple of them gently helping her groom her wet feathers.
I hope the bath was good for Caboose. I will continue to observe her to try to figure out what’s bothering her.
The second task of the evening was to pick the last of the peas and pull the plants out. I was really surprised how many more peas there were tonight as I have been gathering all the ready-to-pick pods every evening for more than a week.
Hot weather is not good for peas here and the plants were deteriorating, so it was time for them to come out of the ground. I think I might plant green beans in that bed next since the corn in the Three Sisters Garden is not growing tall enough to provide the support the beans need.
It was a hoot to watch the chickens fling pea stalks everywhere! They received the majority of the plants, but I also saved aside a big pile for the worms next feeding.
We had a special treat for our dinner, too. When I went to Moore Generation Farms last fall to learn to process chickens (click the link for that post), I commented about how incredible the livers looked. Grocery store livers have been looking unhealthy for a long time and I haven’t had any for quite a while because I just couldn’t put something in my mouth that was pale pink and mushy when it was supposed to look dark red and firm. I was surprised, and grateful, when they gave me several packages of chicken livers. I made a package tonight and they were as lovely and yummy as I expected. My sister will be so jealous!
Having a productive evening sure was a nice way to end the work week!