Tribes and Flocks. I guess tribes have more brains but we all behave the same. As the number of birds on the property has grown I have noticed an interesting phenomenon.

The hatching groups all stick together.

The young ducks are a group. The mature ducks are a group. The black chickens always stick together. The little Easter Eggers float through it all as a team.

Of course the two guinea fowl are never out of each others sight.

The older chickens don’t seem to have flocks within the flock but when they lay there are always the same ones trying to lay in one box. Cramming themselves in together no matter how many empty boxes are around them.

I never noticed these very clear social groups when there were only a small number of chickens in the yard but now it is very obvious.

Here is another interesting observation. Poppy’s babies really do have their own teats. This has not been so obvious in other litters. But the biggest piglet is always on a big center teat and the little fat runt baby always has the smaller end teats.

The other little one seems to wander from teat to teat. She does not settle.

Poppy and her babies spent all day in her weed garden and then she brings them up to the wet concrete to feed. Maybe it is cooler. Pigs love muck. That is clean muck though. She has already trained her babies to poop down in the corner of the garden. It just looks nasty.

Monday again – after such a long weekend!

Today I write to my immigration lawyer about beginning the Green Card process. I will also ask her about the best way for us to help families at the border. Just to add some verified sources to our List. I am really looking for a contact. A church or individual on site who we can work with. Someone we can trust. I want to send blankets that the kids can keep. Many of these facilities are freezing cold from air conditioning and the children are cold. (This happens in some prisons too by the way).

Ok – time for work!


Ps – almost forgot to tell you – ducks LOVE eating Japanese Beetles! The beetles were falling out of the trees yesterday morning – sliding off the leaves in the heavy dew? And plopping to the ground, I don’t know why but the ducks were under the trees talking loudly and gobbling them up ravenously.

29 Comments on “FLOCKS

  1. Please.let me know when you have an contact. I would.like to send.so.e.shampoo and conditioner and tooth brushes and toothpaste etc. Thanks

  2. Living in Canada I try to figure out a way I can help. I’m gutted by what is happening and feel helpless.
    Of course we have our own shame with regard to the missing and murdered Indigenous women.
    Before this becomes political, I have to say I just love hearing about all the animals and how you lovingly work with them.

  3. Thank you for finding out border info.
    Are you feeding the little piglets extra or are they ok?
    How did the farm to table meal go?

  4. Love the wee little piglet at the end…do their size differences remain constant as they grow. Or do the runts sometimes catch up with the bigger ones? The border situation is abhorrent. What have we become when we tolerate such behavior toward other humans? I don’t know…

  5. Hmmm, maybe you could start a rent a duck side business!

  6. Your ducks can come to my rose garden to eat those nasty beetles!! Would love to find out a good source that would help those poor people at the border. Great idea- keep us posted!

  7. Ducks eat bugs, geese eat grass…..We decided one day to catch the beetles in a jar and then put the beetles in their water bucket and the ducks ate them like crazy. It was great!

    I think breeds flock together as well. I have a 12 year old silver laced wyandotte and a 2 year old and they walk side-by-side snubbing the other birds, it’s so funny!

  8. So true about the birds hanging out together! With our ducks, each generation hangs together. They might mix a tiny bit, and there is some cross mating, but they hang with their birth mates. And this goes for our chickens too. We will see about the guineas. We have only two left from the 15 we bought 8 years ago, not sure which round of descendants they are. So we bought 10 more chicks this year to help eat the tick and chigger population. The 10 are ready for the enclosed halfway house, which is a double wired/fenced dog kennel. After a few weeks in that they will join the other birds. I’m thinking that perhaps the two adults will join the adolescents. Will keep you informed! 🙂

  9. I wonder if the piglets clean the mud off and spit it out first …probably not!

  10. “Like a duck on a June bug” is a saying we use….. “Like a duck on a beetle” just dose not sound right to me. 😉

  11. I have heard Ducks like snails too. Is that Wai hiding under blue blanket along side Tane? Laura

    • Yes that is Wai! The flies torture him. I have taken to covering him in mud in the mornings. It seems to work better than anything else!

  12. Japanese beetles are one thing we’re thankfully free of right now, but I know they can decimate vegetation in short order, almost as fast as grasshoppers. Nice to have duck food falling from the heavens!

  13. Animals have social groups and love predictable and order just like humans…we are not so different. AS always the pictures are cute
    While the media takes great pains to tell how horrible the treatment of immigrants are – they fail to point out that no one – no facility was prepared for this huge migration. Some are housed in military barracks used by our soldiers. It is overly crowded and some are in tents (yes, it’s hot, but their own countries are hot as well as the hot walk all the way here. Even the pay to attend Girls and Boy Scout camps here use unairconditioned tents at their camps for children who voluntarily attend.).
    Once the families/children are processed and get through the paper work they go to shelters which offer schooling, TV, pool tables, basketball, lots of toys – more than many local families have.
    It is uneven, but people are trying. It is not concentration camps – not always luxury either…I think the migrants were mislead on the way here and their expectations have disappointed them.
    People are doing the best to provide but our state, like others, is running out of money and Congress is slow to fund although they wail how horrible it is.
    Please have those you know contact (email/call/write) their elected representatives and urge them to back immigrant relief bills (one has passed) and tell those loud (rich) politicians (who as millionaires could donate money or take in families to foster) and overly the top, outraged high profile young house members to stop doing the photo shoots and get back to DC and do their job (4 of the loudest D. young members today voted against an immigrant emergency relief funding bill – I think it passed , but hypocritical. AOCis like drive-by media and proclaims inflammatory emotional things – only to later have to say “well, maybe not true/actually didn’t see/someone told me”.
    Please stop talking and help – you politicians and elected official have the power to do something – do it – now! Stop blah, blah, blah and fake tears
    Try Catholic Charities – which is not affiliated with the Catholic Church but does have contracts to place children in foster homes. If you can find out the organizations with the gov. contacts to shelter and care for the immigrants, that’s where you could send any comfort you wish ( local communities continue to provide blankets, toys. The drive for backpack and school supplies starts next week. Clean underwear, socks are usually welcomed.)
    Of course anyone who wants to sponsor/ a family or child – locate a contracted provider of relocation services – probably Catholic charities – although the actual Catholic Church was also placing children in homes end of last summer.
    We are now entering the hottest and most deadly time of the summer. Tell immigrants to wait until cooler!
    Last week border patrol found the bodies of 2 toddlers, and infant, and the mother – with one water bottle inside the US some distant from the border. Probably died of lack of water, heat exposure. Babies and small children are drowning in the river – the border patrol tries to save them – daily – this takes an emotional toil on men who are also fathers. The majority are kind agents. And to be demonized so – just so some can score political points and get hits on social media accounts.
    We border states have been begging for assistance for years – years and people were too busy to care. Not concerned until election days come closer.
    Congress, people, beg them to stop and wait. Don’t die trying. Wait.
    And Congress get back to work and change the immigration process to one that encourages people to enter legally, improve the e-verify system for hiring, streamline/create a worker visa where some can go back and forth, hire more people/judges, and do the work you were elected to do.
    Sorry for the length – it is a crisis. I’ll try to find contacts for you.
    You have a good heart.

    • Thank you for your incredible common sense!

    • Yes – and yes. This is what we need. I know of entire towns who have opened their doors to immigrants ad they are processed through. And yes please. I would like to find someone I can send socks and knickers to. That is what I want. We can only do so much but that much is a great deal to many. Thank you so much and I look firwRd to an address and name to share so we can stop our own talking and get to DOing.

        • Ci, sorry it’s taken me so long. Extra dog and kid and grandkid Gert time priority.
          What I’ve been able to find out it that it is next to impossible to get an item to 1 kid. “It wouldn’t be fair to give 1 child something and not all of them the same or equal item”.
          Despite what you see on tv (often images/film from Obama’s time as president as they are operating under his guidelines), the children have clean clothes, toys, food (“nutritious” depends on definition – many kids for generations have grown on with PBJ, tuna or baloney sandwiches), and blankets (woven and the silver ones which are what hikers/emergency people use as they hold your heat, do not get wet, block light, and do not allow germs or bacteria grow and become unhealthy like woven one. But kids once out of the temporary processing centers and in actual shelters have beds) The system is overwhelmed and in lock down. The border patrol is processing children thru as fast as possible then either releasing them to family/sponsors or those without parents/family go into foster care with a contractor who has one of the shelters or are placed in individual homes. Because of facility security concerns, the safety of kids around people without clearances and background checks, contagious health issues, and politicians just trying to get emotions stirred up and make political points, no one is getting near those in shelters.
          I talked with an old friend who was in grad school with me – her husband was border patrol on the southern border. They suggested if you want to help, contact local churches as they help with resettlements along with the local schools where the kids (both in shelters and in home care) are registered and will be bused to attend.
          We work here with schools and school districts as the teachers do know the kids and their needs – like coats and jackets for winter.(Last year we collected those around Halloween) School districts here have bilingual and ESL and new arrival departments and they may be able to give you some direction. Usually very kind people. Right now we are starting backpack drives and school supplies – the kids can also use the backpacks for suitcases – sometimes a small truck/;stuffed animal is tucked inside. People will donate for kids. Last year over 7,000 backpacks with supplies were collected in 5 charity drives then taken to local schools. More will be needed this year. Libraries here also work for literacy for all ages and run ESL classes for adults while kids watch movies or do homework. You might make some contacts there if your libraries also work to try and ease assimilation of newcomers.
          Sorry I couldn’t give you an easy contact email or phone or agency – this is such an overwhelming event and seems like local is the only way to get access and make a difference. Somehow it will all work out. Take care.

  14. GREAT POST! I always enjoy reading your posts when I have time although I don’t always make a comment. I know you are very busy but I admire how you always notice the animals behavior and what is best to meet their needs. Your desire to help those along the border wall is beyond amazing.

  15. “Birds of a feather flock together” 🙂
    Whoever said that, knew what they were talking about!

  16. I watch a youtube channel that says that “You don’t have a slug problem. Your problem is you don’t have enough ducks.” Apparently ducks aren’t as destructive a garden, because they don’t scratch about, and they are focused on the bugs.
    So if all this rain is making slugs a nightmare, let the ducks into the garden. Mutual Benefit.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: