Saturday, October 20, 2012

Squeaky clean coop

During the week, he's a lawyer (I love him anyway.) On the weekend, you never know what he'll turn into. Today Gordon became...

CAPTAIN COOP CLEANER!


We use the deep-litter method in our chicken coop, which involves adding layers of shavings over time, allowing the poop to compost underneath, and providing a nice warm layer of bedding all winter. Once a year, in September or October, we clean it out. I say we, but I retired from this last year, because all that shovelling is hard on my lower back, which has always been my Achilles heel (so to speak.)

So dear Gordon does it himself! And because we sold our riding mower last year, he takes the wagon-loads of shavings down the hill by hand. Maybe next year we can get a small garden tractor. I need something to till my veg garden. I've had it with shovelling by hand.




Occasionally he loses control!



Oops. Almost made it. Close enough! Hannibal seems fascinated.


He wears goggles and a mask while shovelling in the coop. It's very dusty, since we layer in diatomaceous earth (food grade) as we add shavings. We don't want anyone getting poultry worker's lung!




The ducks and chickens weren't particularly helpful, but they had a great day running around outside. They love sifting through the dumped shavings.



The blue jumpsuit is oh-so-sexy.


While Gordon was doing his chores, I worked on tidying up the lower barn. I excavated Gordon's work bench, and swept and swept and swept. I discovered yet another rusty old leghold trap. There are TONS in the barn, none of the functional!


Still a little colour out there, but most of the leaves have fallen now. And the coop is clean. Hooray!

37 comments:

  1. You know how much I enjoy your picture/stories. I think somewhat less of chicken poop.

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    1. I completely understand! Hahaha!

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  2. As the Griswolds would say..."The shitter was full".
    Jane x

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    1. As bad as the chickens are, the ducks are far worse! Poop machines!

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  3. I have SO missed your blog, Nat. (No internet connection at the moment -- soon to be remedied...) Bee and dog photos, cat fixes, walks down memory lane (loved the stories on the past four-legged family members), squash soup, muffins, soap (looks like fun) -- and a pooper scooper. Thanks for the fun (glad I sneaked a peek while at work...)

    Janet

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    1. Glad to see you and hope your internet get fixed soon!!

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  4. Poop in the Coop!!! Poop in the Coop!!!

    Cooper Pooper Scooper.

    There's poetry in there somewhere.

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    1. That IS poetry! I read it out loud to Gordon and he agreed.

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  5. Life on the farm is hard work, but your hubby's smile says it all!

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    1. He doesn't mind doing the coop, thank goodness!

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  6. are those masgovi (sp?) ducks? wow, I think you found a keeper, that looked tough :)

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    1. Yes, Muscovy! :) We really like them. Do we need 23? No! But they make us smile and we do get a lot of nice eggs from the girls.

      Gordon's definitely a keeper. :))

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  7. Oh how I hated cleaning the chicken house when I was a little kid. The pig house was cleaned once a year too. You have an excellent system with lots of shavings.

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    1. I would think cleaning the pig house would be worse!! Either way, they're big jobs but Gordon almost seems to like cleaning out the coop.

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  8. Yes you better get a tractor. The get away cart, oh no.
    I miss my coop and chickens :(

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    1. I bet you do! :( They are so full of personality.

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  9. My gals will remain uncleaned today; it's pouring. All our chicken detritus (straw, shavings, poo, etc) goes on the compost heap. Nothing better for the vegs.

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    1. Couldn't agree more! Gordon dumps the shavings next to my veg garden, I let them compost all winter, then spread 'em on the garden in the spring ( or mulch with them.) Great stuff!!

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  10. Wow that's a poopy work! Gotta love those poopers though!

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    1. Cute little poopers who make us tasty eggs!

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  11. Team work. Husbands can be so useful. I love the countryside around you.

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    1. Ah yes, they have their uses, don't they? :)

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  12. You've got a great man there, Natalie. Best let him put his feet up today. For an hour or so anyway.

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    1. He had an hour, then he MADE US SUPPER!!! Such a good husband. I may let him live another day. ;)

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  13. Blech to scooping chicken poop out of a coop. God bless Gordon (even though he IS a lawyer)! He does actually do a fine job with the blue jump suit. Not everyone could pull off that look.

    The backdrop in the photos is spectacular, although it looks like it's getting a bit too chilly for me.

    I love your posts!

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    1. He's really quite a nice. Many people can't believe he's a lawyer! Yes, I think he rocks that ugly suit. :)

      We are having a warmer than usual fall so far, but I'm sure you'd find it pretty nippy here now, and it's going down towards freezing at night.

      Glad you are vicariously enjoying farm life through my blog, Mitchell.

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  14. Having cleaned horse stalls for most of my life, I know just how much work that is. But we did it every day. Hope you have a great week end.

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    1. Wow, horse stalls! I think the coop is easier. It's a once-a-year giant shovelling job, with nestbox and perch cleaning (and windows!) throughout the year. It's good to have it done!

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  15. Love Gordon's coveralls - you need to get his name embroidered on them. Dave has two pairs for the garage - one says Rockerdave (his nickname) and the other says Dodge Boy (for the car).

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    1. Oooo!!! I wonder if I can get an embroidered name badge? I'm sure I could! I want one for my beesuit, too Thank you! I'm on it!

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  16. I don't have any legal issues, at the moment, but I'd like to retain his services to clean out my coop. It's hard to resist a man in coveralls! ~ Maureen

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    1. He'll make you a cuppa tea and muffins too! :)

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  17. "During the week, he's a lawyer (I love him anyway.)"

    That's a great line :)

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    1. I know, I know, I'm awful! But ugh, so many bad lawyers out there and my God, my own personal definition of hell is a lawyer party. (Sorry, lawyers!) Graphic designer parties are MUCH more fun!

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  18. Nothing like a clean coop!

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    1. Such a sense of accomplishment, and the chickens are happy too.

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  19. Good that you show us the bad part of farming with the fun stuff.
    Otherwise we get too jealous!

    Perhaps a Burro attached to the cart would be an alternative and cute too. :)

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Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!