Chipping Wood and Scaring Puppies

IMG_1263Machines are amazing. You put in some magic fuel and you instantly have an army of workers at your beck and call. We can accomplish things that a farmer could only dream about a hundred years ago. However this is only the case when things are going smoothly. It is hard for us to remember a time when everything just went the way it was supposed to, usually based on the fact that most of the farm equipment we use is cobbled together or older than we are. Having new things is not always a guarantee that the job will go more easily but in theory the odds of things going wrong are fewer. We don’t have many new things. Such is the case for our great wood chipping adventure of last week.

The Squier’s big chipper hooks up to a Tractors PTO shaft and can do some pretty large diameter trees when it’s running well. But it clogs up easily and after one such event we had to open it up and clean it all out. This of course meant we had to turn off the tractor for safety’s sake. You would think that after turning on the tractor twenty minutes before you could do it again twenty minutes later. But you my friend would be wrong. The ignition switch for our old SAME tractor decided to head to the green pastures in the sky that day and so that project got put on hold until we find a replacement part for it. We just have to head down to the SAME dealership and pick it up, except there are no SAME dealerships, anywhere. Lucky for us Wheaton is in charge of the tractor while Meadow’s Dad is out west trying to fight wildfires so he is the one searching for the part

The rain today is incontinent but welcomed. The pond and brook were starting to look a little low. This year I’m planning on keeping the rice paddies flooded until we are ready to harvest. In the past after we drain the paddies to let the rice dry a little faster we have an influx of mini lumberjacks. There is some debate on if it is chipmunks, rabbits or some other furry creature doing the work but I would like to avoid it this year. These long slow showers are great for recharging our water sources and give me an excuse to take it a little slower for the day.

I don’t think we will ever have to worry about the new puppy going after chickens. With two momma hens roaming the farm Ania has been the victim of many assaults. Every morning we take her and Louie out to the milking parlor. While we milk Louie gets to roam free but Ania is stuck being tied to a nearby tree. A few times she was unlucky enough to have one of the hens and chicks come strutting by. I’m sure she played some part in encouraging an attack but all we heard was the high pitched squeals of a puppy getting pummeled by a chicken. Off the lease she has had a few run ins with the chickens and seems to get that the further away she is the better off she will be.

Electric fences however are still a bit of a mystery to her. A few weeks ago she got whacked by one the nettings keeping our little goats in. She freaked out and ran off to wait by the door for us. But when she met the same fence in another place she wasn’t scared of it at all. She got tangled in it trying to get to Meadow. We thought that was strange since after Louie got hit he refused to get within 50 feet of a fence. But then we discovered that she was scared of the little goats without the fence around them. She must think they have magical mind powers that can shock little puppies from a great distance.

August 24th, 2014|

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