Yes, I believe winter is here to stay. Unlike the last few years when you could go Christmas shopping in your short sleeved tee-shirt, this year when you sing White Christmas, I believe you will be bundled up and standing in the white stuff. We all hate snow when it comes to dealing with it and getting out of the driveway after the initial snowfall, but we need a few years with lots of snow cover to protect the ground from those deep freezes where we have extended low temperatures and bare ground. The winters are much more friendly to wildlife if the ground isn’t frozen down to the four foot mark. Snow insulates the ground and dens of small animals, leaves acorns and seeds accessible under the snow, while cloudy nights insulate the world from extremely cold temperatures too. Snow protects all wildlife from the harsh winds because they can burrow into it, creating a protective wall between them and the wind and actually remain quite warm.
Here is a close-up of the completed duck house.
Here is the completed chicken house from a distance..
Last night we made sure all the chickens in the new barn were inside and not out in the fenced run since we didn’t get the nylon sheeting on that barn. In fact, we installed a second heat lamp for the chickens, one over the bunnies and one for the turkey’s.
The chickens in the old barn were about 40 degrees within a half hour of closing them in and the ducks got an extra helper as we turned on a heat lamp there. Philip was happy with the added heat and stuck pretty close to the red glow of the heat lamp.
Today, we will brave the cold again to finish the final leg of the barn. It shouldn’t take all that long, unless we can’t stand the cold to work…… as it is now 9:45 and only 26 degrees and windy. Vick has trouble with fingers and toes since she started taking the medicine she is on and we believe it is related directly to one drug. She knows that she is to get into the house and warm up as soon as it become uncomfortable for her. I don’t really mind the cold like she does. My waterloo comes during the summer when I can’t take heat over the 90 degree mark. I could probably sweat profusely today, if I do strenuous work for an extended period of time. Anyway, if we get the barn covered today, there is nothing else that we positively have to do until spring if the weather is unfriendly. If the weather is nice, we will reduce the spring workload a little by doing it now.