We thought you might like an update on how things are going here at Raggedy Hen Farm after a full week of snow on the ground and below-freezing temperatures. Believe it or not, the hens actually acclimated quite quickly. We raked up their run to remove some of the snow and have been making sure the water stays fresh and unfrozen, but after a day or two of staying close to or in the henhouse, they have been venturing out. As far as they know, this is just the way life is now.
While we are not about to go opening up the beehive box to see how the bees are doing, we feel reasonably confident that they are alright in there. We left them with more than a dozen combs of honey and notice that the snow has melted away over the end where we suspect the colony is huddled together keeping themselves (and, it looks like, the area around them) warm.
Our Jersey Giant, Gertrude, is nearly finished with her molting. You might notice from the photo that her comb and wattle are still very pale. They will redden up when she is all done and ready to start laying again. Meanwhile, she is looking good and staying warm.
Hilda, on the other hand, (our Buff Orpington) is in the midst of her molt. Like Trudy, however, she seems to be moving through it rather quickly. During the cold nights, she has the other hens to keep her warm, but during the day, she is not her typical fat and sassy self.
There are still edible vegetables in the garden: parsnips, carrots, Brussels sprouts–to name a few. Of course, they are mostly buried under the frozen snow. We haven’t done much harvesting while the ground is frozen but when things start to thaw, we’ll be able to gather some tasty carrots again!
And, that is how things are looking here on Cedar Street. We’re not going to lie–we are a bit tired of the cold and the ice and the snow, and we imagine the other critters are too. Meanwhile, we just adjust and try to enjoy the beauty and magic of the season!