Ohiofarmgirl's Adventures in The Good Land is largely a fish out of water tale about how I eventually found my footing on a small farm in an Amish town. We are a mostly organic, somewhat self sufficient, sustainable farm in Ohio. There's action and adventure and I'll always tell you the truth about farming.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Dust Clucks and Cheese Notes

I love my hens. They are so industrious and are always up to something. So boy - was I surprised when I saw a whole heap of them laying down on the job!

Bunch of slackers.

You'll remember from our Public Service Announcement #42 that hens like to take dust baths. Sometimes you'll find them in very very weird positions.  But today I just found them all in a heap in one of the garden beds. They were having a great time digging and flopping all around.

And yesterday I found them digging to China... I'm always amazed and how deep they can scuttle down in the dirt. They were having a blast in the fresh, dry dirt - so much better than all the rain, snow, and mud we've been having.  Silly dust clucks!

I might start a new category called Cheese Notes. I really want to do a better job at tracking my cheese successes and failures. So in order to do a better job of keeping notes I bring you...

Cheese Notes:
Today (3/29) I started another gouda. All goat milk - about six gallons in 2 different pots. Weather was cold but dry (can you believe "they" say weather actually will affect your cheese making?). I used mesophilic culture but I think I may have used too much in the smaller batch. Also used calcium chloride and rennet tablets (not liquid).  This much milk just about filled the tomme.

Also, I just found this great place online to order cheese making supplies. Leeners is here in Ohio but too far for me to drive. But I'll be placing an order soon.

Chickens and Cheese - what could be better? Have a great Wednesday everyone!


Autumn said...

I always had gotten a kick out of watching my gram's hens take dust baths!

Mama Mess said...

I love it when the hens lay down flat on their side with their legs sticking out and give you a heart attack that THEY'VE had a heart attack and dropped dead. Then when you go out there and nudge them with your pokin' stick they jump up and run off as if to say......oops sorry, back on the job, so terribly sorry you caught me resting!

Gingerbreadshouse7 said...

I can hear you saying "Eat your heart out Ginny,seeing my chicks and ducks having fun" :o( I'm not wishing for a goat, he might eat up my greens..:o)

ckb said...

In French, "potholes" in the roads are called "hens' nests" — nids de poule. That's how round and deep the hens can dig.

Homemade Alaska said...

The chicken dust baths make me laugh. Ours have only frozen ground right now, but whenever we put down new wood chips for them, they treat it like a dust bath.

Summersweet Farm said...

Those chickens! Mine keep somehow escaping from their 2 acre forest pasture to invade my garden and gobble up all the baby clover crop I sowed!

Ohiofarmgirl said...

Hi Autumn! They are just so funny out there floppin' around.

GW - I usually run screaming "HEN DOWN! HEN DOWN!".... which is what usually gives them the heart attack. ha!

Ginny - a goat WOULD eat your greens! These clucks are the best part of my day - if you look closely they are saying, "Hi Ginny! We love you!" They are good chickens for sure.

CKB - What a great thing to know! From now on I'm calling these holes pot holes!

H.Alaska - you can almost see them looking longingly at the snow thinking.. if I could only roll around in it.

SSF - chickens are like cats. They will always be the ONE place you don't want them to go.

Chai Chai said...

I'm guessing that with Sunny on the job you have more milk than you know what to do with.

You need to start posting some of your experiments, including your bacon flavored goudas!

Hi, I'm Mary... said...

Love dust bathing chickens! Surest sign of summer you'll ever see. :)



Ohiofarmgirl said...

CC - we've got plenty to do with all that milk. Once we release the death-grip of foreign dependence on oil... I mean.... store cheese we'll be free free free!

Hey they Hey There! Yep - they are so happy the weather is better. So am I!

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