A Valentine's Day Peck
(A few days early!)
Roses are red, I’m actually a tiny dinosaur, (roar!) While farming is hard work, Loving you is never a chore.
— Sweet Heebeejeebees
Here’s What’s Happening At Good Spirits Farm
Confirmation of bird flu in migratory birds in North Carolina has me on edge. Europe, as some of you probably know, is in the middle of a horrible bird flu outbreak. Because worrying is the thing I do best, I’m concerned about what might happen here.
Our whole farm is set up to be animal-welfare focused, which means giving our chickens access to pasture and fresh air. We also want our farm to be biodiverse, and we’ve built dozens of bird boxes to encourage bluebirds and tree swallows to call this place home. But: these two things also happen to put our birds more at risk of contracting something carried by wild birds.
In Europe, chicken keepers are being urged to keep their birds indoors. Our gals would absolutely hate this turn of events, but if we end up with confirmed cases in Tennessee, I’ll seriously consider it. In the meantime, we’ll be looking for all the ways we can minimize our flock’s contact with wild birds.
On a brighter note, egg production is picking up! We’re happy to let our hens take a break during the winter. Technically, you can force them to lay all winter long by adding UV lights to their coop, but we believe every body needs a break. Still: We love to go out and find 10 eggs waiting for us instead of the 2-3 we’ve been getting all winter. A sure sign winter is seeing itself out!
Here’s What I Loved This Week
I’ve been listening to Kristin Hannah’s new book, “The Four Winds” while doing my chores this week. The main character finds purpose and resiliance in farm work, something I strongly identify with. And: it’s just a great story of a family trying to survive the Dust Bowl. If you like fast-moving fiction, add it to your library list!