Yesterday I took the four oldest kids and we went to pick up our new rooster from my friend. She had kept him for me for far longer than either she or I were planning so I am very grateful. It was dark by the time we got there so I really couldn’t get any pictures. I have actually heard that it is best to introduce new birds to a flock at night so I was hopeful this would work out. This morning, woken by some mediocre crowing, everyone seemed to be happy. I didn’t want to let them free range today because I wasn’t sure how Big Red, the name we are going with for now, would do. I think I will give him a couple more days before letting him out. In the meantime I am trying to give them plenty of fresh grass and clover to keep all of the chickens occupied in their run.
This evening with the few spare minutes I had I wanted to get the eight straw bales that were up against the barn down to the compost pile. It took a bit longer than I had hoped and included an hour break. The reason for the break was that while I was lifting one of the bales into the tractor bucket I found myself face first in a nest of bumblebees. I consider it a minor miracle I wasn’t stung and neither were the kids who were standing close by. A can of wasp spray, and an hour later, I was able to get the last of the straw moved. Not without another thrill. As I was raking the last of the straw a last bee dive bombed me and grabbed onto my neck. Fortunately I was able to brush it off before it stung me, but it got my heart going. While moving the straw I found evidence of what I knew was there. I had seen his tail once or twice. My guess is it was eating mice who were hiding in the straw.
All in all, not a bad day.