Tuesday, March 17, 2015 Farm News

The usual heading photo is quite a bit different from the photo of the same spot just last week.

The usual heading photo is quite a bit different from the photo of the same spot just last week.

No sledding on the lane way this week.  In last week's post we put in a photo of Gabriel and Devon just about to start another sled run.

No sledding on the lane way this week. In last week’s post we put in a photo of Gabriel and Devon just about to start another sled run.

I’ll post a few days earlier this week.   The weather has greatly improved from February and the work of running the farm has gotten much easier.  We have now laid a hose over the ground to water the cows and horses and don’t have to worry so much about it getting frozen.  It usually warms enough during the day to thaw the pipe if it goes below freezing at night.  Today, Tuesday, is nice and sunny, but only a little warm and their is a good gusty wind blowing strongly out of the north.  The pipe may actually be frozen in the odd spot that has had no sun.

The tree tapping gang inspecting for a spot to place taps, or maybe they are just having fun.

The tree tapping gang inspecting for a spot to place taps, or maybe they are just having fun.

Two of the Manitoba Maple trees with two taps per tree. Aerron just behind one of those trees is tapping a third.

Two of the Manitoba Maple trees with two taps per tree. Aerron just behind one of those trees is tapping a third.

The temperatures have been right for getting the Maple sap to flow and Aerron has tapped quite a few trees.  We tap quite a few Manitoba Maple as well as the Sugar Maple since we have far more of the former and the end product is the same no matter which tree the sap comes from.  We got our first buckets of sap on Sunday, others of the tree tapper crowd may have gotten some much earlier but we were a little late in setting taps this season.   We think that until now the sap flow has not been very high anyway.  Aerron will also be tapping a few Black Walnut trees so we can try Walnut syrup to see how it might compare to the highly popular Maple syrup.  Today, Tuesday, was the start of the boiling down process which will be carried out, for as long as the sap flows, on our two wood stoves.  We do our ‘sugarin’ in the kitchen with no problems other than it is difficult to find room to boil the kettle to make coffee, never mind to find enough room to set out 2 or 3 pots for making supper.

Four pots with Maple sap, the coffee press near empty, the kettle in a cool spot, Marie's coffee cup full but mine is empty. The wood stove is humming along quite hot.

Four pots with Maple sap, the coffee press near empty, the kettle in a cool spot, Marie’s coffee cup full but mine is empty. The wood stove is humming along quite hot.

I heard, Monday afternoon,a Killdeer calling.  Didn’t see the bird, just heard it the one time, the first time this spring.  Always surprised how early they return each year.  Have not seen the Tundra Swans yet, they should be by any time now.  I think that in past years they have been by even earlier. We usually hear them before we see them. Really nice to be talking about all these spring things.

All the ducks and a few of the main flock ISA hens out in the sunshine with the ducks snuffling through the water bowls and puddles.

All the ducks and a few of the main flock ISA hens out in the sunshine with the ducks snuffling through the water bowls and puddles.

The hens really like this spot at the foot of the polar tree.

The hens really like this spot at the foot of the polar tree.

The elderly team just enjoying the sunshine out of the wind.

The elderly team just enjoying the sunshine out of the wind.

The snow continues to disappear and in it’s place is a lot of very soft earth which is of course churned quickly to mud with too much traffic.  The frost is still in the ground in most places so we have a long way to go before we can think about preparing any ground in the garden. Lots of ice still around so the footing can be a little precarious in spots.

More of the special chickens with a Red Silkie hen at front, two Barnevelder hens in the middle and a Dark Brown Leghorn hen in behind.  Notice the white ears on the Leghorn and on the Silkie.  these are indicators of white or nearly white eggs.

More of the special chickens with a Red Silkie hen at front, two Barnevelder hens in the middle and a Dark Brown Leghorn hen in behind. Notice the white ears on the Leghorn and on the Silkie. these are indicators of white or nearly white eggs.

Three of the Special chickens.  From the left are a Barnevelder hen, a Red Silkie rooster and a Black copper Marans hen.

Three of the Special chickens. From the left are a Barnevelder hen, a Red Silkie rooster and a Black copper Marans hen.

Black Copper Marans Rooster.  Grey lightly feathered legs. Welsumer hen in behind.

Black Copper Marans Rooster. Grey lightly feathered legs. Welsumer hen in behind.

Barnevelder rooster. Clean yellow legs.

Barnevelder rooster. Clean yellow legs.

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One Response to Tuesday, March 17, 2015 Farm News

  1. Robert Feagan says:

    Nice shot of the older horses. I am hoping that when the time comes, my sons provide me with a nice spot out of the wind where I can catch a few rays in my golden years!

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