Wednesday, May 9, 2012

A Morning of hands on learning

We have had some major critter problems around our homestead lately. Last week we lost our last two chickens due to a rascally raccoon. The coon is now dead thanks to a determined and frustrated chicken owner. : ) But we are now chickenless as well. : ( New ones will be on their way soon, and it gives us time to get the coop cleaned out of the legs mites that seemed to take over.

Last night we got home late from doing some work. Jonathon was missing, and I noticed that his gun was gone. I could see the light on in his barn, so I assumed he was getting stuff around for work this morning. Wrong! An opposum was in there eating chicken feed out of a nice hole she chewed in the bottom of the brand new bag. Grrrrr! Yep, that critter died too. Jonathon was too tired to take care of it, so he left it in there for the night.

This morning, Jonathon called and gave Josiah instructions to get the opposum out of there. So, we got his work gloves out and all 4 children headed out to the barn. Alegra came running in, "Mom, Diella saw something kicking and she's having babies!" I said, "Remember opposums have pouches that they keep their babies in. They are just in her pouch." So, I slipped my sandals on and headed out to the barn to see if they needed help. After carefully moving the bag of chicken feed without losing all the feed out the bottom from the hole, I scooped her up in a shovel and carried her out of the barn to the yard. Sure enough, there were 5 babies in her pouch, nursing as fast as they could. Diella tried to pull one out so we could see it better, but that little baby was clenched on so tight, it wasn't coming out. Amazing how these animals were created.

So, the children got a great hands on lesson today. A little gross of a lesson, but it seems grossness comes along with living in the country, especially when there are critters to be taken care of.

So, that job is done!  Now what can we get into the rest of the day?  : )