I was just sitting down to write a post about our protein sources when I heard the chickens squawking and Sparky start barking. When I looked out the door, I saw a huge red-tailed hawk fly out from behind our chicken coop. I could see Flash, our rooster, making lots of noise by the coop door and three of the hens in the other corner of the enclosure. When I looked inside the coop I found only 5 more hens. I looked under the coop, where the chickens sometimes hang out during the day, and I thought I saw Nugget (our Plymouth Rock who is molting) in a very tight space under the shed. I was not sure if there were any more hiding. I thought we had lost 5-6 hens today at that point; one of our older Buff Orpingtons and possibly 5 Isa Browns. It seemed like the next thing on our agenda would be figuring out how to protect the remaining chickens from the hawks.
Back to what I’d planned on writing about…
We moved to our little farm less than two years ago and I just realized all the meat we are eating, we are either raising it ourselves (chicken, eggs) or buying from a local farmer (pork from Stephanie at Kauffman’s Keep and beef from Jacob Horst at Windmill Meadows Farm). Both farms are within a 30 minute drive. Last summer we purchased half of a cow and still have meat in the freezer. Tonight we’re having filet mignon for our Valentine’s Day dinner! At the beginning of this year we purchased half of a pig. Yay, bacon! Some of the meat I would commonly purchase from the grocery store was bacon, meatballs and breakfast sausage. Now I make my own meatballs with the ground beef and breakfast sausage from the ground pork.
Before we moved here we joined a meat CSA so that we could start getting our meat local with less food miles. We didn’t know all the farmers raising the animals, but it was a start. One of the goals we had when we moved to Boonsboro was to know exactly where our food was coming from and how it was raised. I’m pretty excited to say we’ve accomplished that goal with our meat!
Just checked on the chickens. They must have been hiding really well! I guess that space under the shed can protect them! They are all safe and sound, what a relief!