Baby Rabbits, Fluffy Goslings, and Killer Chickens

It’s time for a farm story….

Clearing, planting, and weeding started in earnest several weeks ago, and this is also the time of year animal numbers start spiking.  Both livestock and the natives are producing young … although the natives tend to drop surprises on me.

For instance, a couple of weeks ago I was weeding the asparagus patch (the dead of winter is about the only time weeds don’t grow).  I noticed a patch of gray fur near the fence, and when I picked it up, the mulching underneath twitched.  So I pulled that back and discovered a rabbit had decided the garden would be perfect for her nursery.

It will be of no surprise I don’t want rabbits in the garden, but the kits’ eyes were still closed and of course they’re wretchedly cute.  I decided to give them the chance to reach weaning age before I kick them out so they can roam free with all their relatives.

 

As much as I enjoy gardening, weeding will always be a chore, so I figured I should employ some help with that duty.  Geese are natural lawnmowers that relish young weeds, but I specifically wanted the Pilgrim breed – they’re docile, and it’s easy to tell the geese from the ganders as soon as they hatch.

They’re also a rare breed, so it took some effort and traveling on my part to obtain four goslings that are of course wretchedly cute.  That’s two males and two females to start the flock, and they were able to move right into the brooder already vacated by the older chicks.

Upon returning from the trip to get the goslings, Hubby and I saw something a little new….

 

Although everything likes to eat chicken, chickens are not on the bottom of the food chain.  They definitely control the bug population around the house, and I’ve seen them running around (usually chasing each other) with hapless lizards and even mice they snatched out of the weeds.

This was the first time we’d seen one eating a snake.  Hubby snapped this picture and we’ve shared it with family and friends.  There’s a majority of opinion in the responses:  Of course it’s not cute, although it might be wretched….