Monday, January 23, 2017

Meanwhile In Nevada, My Poultry STILL Hates Me...

...but what else is new--inexplicable chicken 'tude is one of the joys of Winter.  Nothing for it but to arm yourself with chicken goodies.

This morning we had our heaviest snowfall yet.  Which was very pretty, as usual!

It iced the neighbor's trees...

And our patio set.

Out back I slog to go free the chickens from their snug, heated coop so they could stare in disbelief at this fresh Hell.  And throw blame where it obviously lies, with me.

The snow out back was a bit deeper and came up halfway to my knees (But I'm quite short, so take that into consideration, it's possibly not as impressive as it sounds at first blush).  The walkway had disappeared...

And opening the gate to the chicken yard required me having a go at the snow with a shovel first.

In the chicken yard I plonked down the ruler I'd brought along...
Yup, 7 inches of snow fell overnight.

The chicken yard, for a change, looks uniformly pretty.  Bonus:  the snow covers all those eternally present damned rocks.

My future vegetable garden area sealed off by snow.

And the neighbor's trees were gorgeous!

By now the sun was coming up and it was time to release the pissy poultry.

The backyard weather station says, 'Snow!'
 Yup, chickens not happy.  This is as far as they venture out of the coop all day, because God forbid a chicken foot *ever* touch snow.  Goodies are promised for later.

Back into the back yard near the house to let Dusty out to do her thing.

Which due to the depth of the snow combined with her short stature, she is understandably reluctant to do.

But in the end she dutifully slogs through the snow to pick her spot.  A full bladder cannot be denied.

She compromises when the snow becomes too deep and abandons her regular pee spot, instead squatting *very* carefully behind the tree.   I feel for ya, dog.  Hovering so your lady bits do not contact undesireable surfaces is an art all we ladies eventually learn.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Why My Poultry Hates Me

...in a word, snow.  And lots of it, at least for our area.

The snow started at dawn--giant, fluffy chunks of it.  After two hours we had 4 1/2 inches down.  It's the type that sticks to everything and looks *so* pretty!

The back yard, the walkway has disappeared...

...and the coop looks like Superman's freakin' Fortress of Solitude.

But Hell, the dog is loving the snow!

She snowplowed around in it for a bit.

Back to the chickens, it's time to let them out of the coop where they've spent a snug night.  Since they've been closed up for the night, they don't know about the snow yet...

I have a feeling they aren't going to be too happy.

But yeah--very pretty!  The Curly Willow tree looking cool in the snow...

...all 4 1/2 inches of it.  Bantam Cochins, beware.

The Poultry Ice Palace. Reminds me of scenes from Dr. Zhivago.

OK, first to open the door to the run...


OK, now the snow piling up on every little thing is getting kinda ridiculous.

BUT--anticipating poultry unhappiness (and subsequent blaming of the humans for yet another snowstorm), I had come prepared--with cabbage!  Food bribes work wonders in poultryland.

After I opened the coop (and endured the whining/grumbling/hairyeyeball from 30+ chickens), I tried to get someone--anyone--to come out into the snow for a moment for some yummy, yummy cabbage.  I placed a lovely chunk of cabbage *just* outside the run door.

Bowie spots it and thinks about venturing out, Pele watching from behind.  I guess if Bowie disappears, that lets Pele know that the snow is too deep.  Although to be fair, using bantam Cochins as snow yardsticks isn't the best idea.

Bowie thinks about it, and decides...

...NOPE.  Screw you *and* your cabbage, bowby human.
Pele refused to come out, either.  No one else was even remotely interested and they all just shot me disdainful, hate-you-Chaka looks, so the cabbage was redistributed and passed out in the relative muddy comfort of the run & coop.

Luckily we thought ahead (and watched the weather forecast), and went to the store yesterday for chicken goodies to keep them occupied for the weekend.

Because *this* storm is just the precursor to the BIG one tomorrow!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Hey, I'll Be Damned, It's Still There!

Welp, it was one heck of a week, lemme tell ya!

This week we had screaming winds for days on end, a flood AND a whole bunch of snow.  And the flood and snow were within a day of each other!

To give the weather service credit, everyone was amptly warned, given the standard 'Be prepared to be on your own for 3-5 days' instructions, etc.  And the weather service, the local government and emergency services were fully prepared and communicated and meshed well together.  It really was a fine example of handling a not-too-fun situation in the best way possible.

So we had a solid week of heavy-duty weather, everything from high winds to 'catastrophic' (the weather services' word, not mine) rain/flooding to MORE high winds just for fun (weather service missed that 48 hour episode though), then a blizzard that has and *still is* dumping snow on us.  Oh, and meanwhile, the earthquake swarms in our area continue.

Plague of toads must be backordered.

But anyway, this morning when I got up the chicken coop & run was still there...

As far as the yard goes, it's either covered in snow or supremely muddy.  Ya gotta watch where you step though, since the yard had about 6 inches of floodwater standing that froze overnight and then got snowed on to the tune of about 6-7 inches.  When I took this pic most of the snow had melted away.

The coop doors were damaged pretty heavily and we'll have to replace them. Unfortunately we haven't been able to check the house for wind damage yet since it snowed so quickly and thoroughly.  But they say it will melt off in a few days, then we'll know what--if any--damage there is.

At lease the chickens had a genuinely great time ice skating on the frozen lake-that-was-once-a-yard before the snow came!

Plus they had their own Japanese zen garden pond!