Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Bad Karma?
...or Pay Back's a B @ * # ~

This has not been one of Mom's better weeks.  First, she couldn't get Blogger to let her upload any photos to her blog posts.  That sure threw a crimp in her style!

Then, the wind blew the gate to the paddock by the barn in the backyard open, so us girls went in and "introduced" ourselves to the CHICKENS. Mom was NOT pleased by this. She seemed especially displeased by the fact that we tipped over, and helped ourselves to the chicken feed. That was GOOD STUFF!

And of course, when Mom came running out, screeming like a banshee,  and chased us out of the paddock, one of the ram lambs (Zorro) jumped the fence and got in with us girls.  So Mom then had to separate him from the girls and get him back in with the rams.  She was NOT a happy camper.

Hey ~ it was OUR BARN FIRST!!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Blogger is not giving me the option of adding photos today. What's up with that?
I 'cleared my cache' and still no photo button on my Blogger editor.

I'm sorry. I don't know HOW to post without pictures!

Is anyone else experiencing this problem?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A Shepherd's WINGS...

I have copied and pasted the first post from my new blog: "Bluff Country Back Yard Chickens" ~ A SHEPHERD'S WINGS ~
I know ~ I've done a lousey job of keeping up with THIS blog the past couple of days. And most of my posts have been about chickens lately. That's why I've decided to start a blog following my adventures with my chickens! I'll get back to posting SHEEP stories/photos on here...

Since 2001, I've raised Shetland sheep. They have been my passion. They brought more love and joy and friendship into my life than I could have possibly dreamed!

I fell in love with spotted lambs and decided that I wanted to breed for a predictable cluster of spots referred to as "HST" which stands for a solid colored sheep with white on the Head, Socks and Tail.

I was told it couldn't be done. Not predictably, anyway. Sheep with that kind of spotting turned up randomly but one couldn't get them on purpose!

So, I set out to breed myself a flock of HST spotted Shetlands. It took me six years to get to the point that I could predictably produce, excellent quality, HST spotted Shetlands.

But I did it.
Now, so can anybody else.
Time for a new challenge.

In July of 2009, I bought my first bantam cochin chickens. It was love at first "cluck". I was totally enthralled with these "fuzzy little bowling balls" that rolled around the paddock and 'cooed' when I picked them up and held them. I was warned that they are "addictive".
Boy! Are they addictive!!

I knew I wanted more so I started researching the different colors and patterns that bantam cochins come in. Guess what I discovered? A group of breeders is working on a project to develop a new color pattern in bantam Cochin chickens! It's call "Mille Fleur" and it's absolutely beautiful!

A new friend that I met in the "BackYardChicken Group" (who'd have ever thought I'd be joining chicken groups!??) describes the Mille Fleur Bantam Cochin like this:
"There is NOTHING more addicting than a flock of mini fluffy-butt chickens. And when those fluffy-butts are candy-colored mixes of marshmallow and caramel and butterscotch and deep cherry and dark chocolate it is soooooo yummy! They are the sweetest, gentlest birds, and when they waddle around you can't help but smile!"

I'm starting my own breeding flock of Mille Fleur Bantam Cochins. These are all babies and will change, dramatically as they grow. At this point in time, the MFC (Mille Fleur Cochin) is not a recognized color. But it WILL be, one day...

If you'd like to watch my progress as I breed for predictability in these wonderful, colorful birds, please follow along.

We'd love the company!

P.S. To all my dear, DEAR "A Shepherds Voice" followers, I have no intentions of discontinuing that blog! It has become a part of my life. It's readers ~ my family. I love "it" and I love all of you. This is just an expansion of my flock ~ by NO means the end of Bluff Country Shetlands OR A Shepherd's Voice!

DREAM says...

"I knew that."


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Here Comes TROUBLE....

My newest Mille Fleur Bantam Cochin Rooster, "TROUBLE" is finally here! He arrived at the local Post Office at 7 o'clock this morning ~ after leaving GA on Monday!

I was so worried that this poor, baby boy was going to be weak from his long journey. NOT A PROBLEM!

Trouble came out of his box ~ not looking for food or water ~ looking for a fight with any other chicken! I tell you, this guy was ticked off!

He finally did settle down and eat. He is absolutely GORGEOUS! A beautiful, deep, Mahogany color with LOTS of the black and white chevrons that distinguish a Mille Fleur pattern. I am thrilled to add him to my flock!

TROUBLE says...

"I'm not just another pretty, Fuzzy Butt!"

DREAM says...

"I LIKE his attitude!!!"

You better practice that smile, Dreamer ~ I'm going to do some SHEEPY posts this weekend...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

TWO Out of Three....

Two out of the three Mille Fleur Bantam Cochins that I was expecting arrived in the Bluff Country at 7 o'clock this morning. I would have freaked out about the third one, but the breeder did alert me that it might take three days for him to arrive.

I guess that means I get to prolong the fun of getting new birds!

In the meantime, I'm in love with my beautiful, new pullet and her handsome young rooster-friend.

Have I mentioned that I LOVE "Fuzzy, Cochin Butts"?

DREAM says...

"Is that all they ever do ~ EAT???"

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

They're On Their Way....

This is the view, looking down into the box, of the two Mille Fleur bantam Cochins that are winging their way (via Priority Mail!) across the country to their new home in the Bluff Country. I'm maybe just a LITTLE bit excited...

This lovely pair is coming from Tim Kerbo in Oklahoma. This is a photo of the pullet(little girl), taken 3 weeks ago. She is already showing more brown coloring coming in. That will continue to develop as she matures. I'll probably breed her to a darker roo, to make it likely that her chicks have more color.

And THIS handsome 5 month old rooster is flying all the way from Mike Vogan in Georgia! Isn't he awesome???

He's not striking a very "Cochin-like" pose here. Cochins are supposed to be round. Kind of like a fluffy bowling ball. I suspect it's just this photo as the breeder I got him from breeds some REALLY nice quality birds. Regardless, his color is GORGEOUS! We'll know more about his "type" soon enough since all three of these beauties should arrive tomorrow morning!

I might, possibly, be persuaded to share a photo or two of the newcomers when they arrive...

DREAM says...

"This is all your fault, Rayna!"

Monday, September 21, 2009

Free Range Cochins...

I love to let my Cochins out of their pens to "free range". I figure it's good for them ~ both exercise wise and food wise. They delight in picking through the grass and weeds and digging in the dirt.

I even gave them a couple of Sunflowers to toy with/eat. They didn't seem too interested until the flosers were a couple of days old.

Now they're picking off the seeds like they're a real delicasy!

Silk prefers stale bread...
I get a kick out of how the black trio stays so close together.
Under the watchful eyes of "Shine".

I love to watch their fluffy butts as they walk back to their barn...
I've divided the stall in the barn into two halves so that when I'm not there, to watch the cochins outside, only one group can be out at a time. I am defiinitely keeping my breeding groups separate! ;-)

I know ~ it's not exactly a professional job, making the divider, but it WORKS! I even cut the wire so it goes around/over the feed and water containers.

Besides, I want it 'portable' so I can take it out when I get my "bachalor pad" built for the roosters ~ then all the hens will be in the one big stall, together.

Although, I kind of hate to break up my breeding groups...
They seem so HAPPY!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Day Three...HUNTER...

As much as Dream may complain, it is really the BOYS that get neglected around here! Since being ousted from their barn and paddock so the chickens could take it over, Hunter and the two remaining ram lambs are living in the pasture with a large calf hut for shelter. They're doing fine, but not getting much attention.

The 'big guy' does miss being petted and scratched and can occasionally be seen 'scratching his itch' on my fences!

Hunter doesn't have to bash fences to destroy them ~ he just LEANS on them!

"But, it feels SO good!"

"Ah, yes ~ right there!"

For the record, although I don't go into the pasture with the boys very often (other than when I have to wash their water bucket), I DO give them lots of pets and scratches through the fence. And Hunter, is a perfect gentleman!
HUNTER says...

"Life is good in the Bluff Country..."

Yes, it is my beautiful Golden Boy! But I'm still hoping that we find a new home for you, SOON, where you can have a whole flock of EWES to keep you company...

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Day Two ~ Gone to the BIRDS...

So, I did spend a LITTLE time with my Chickens.

They are just so much FUN!!!

I love it when the wind ruffles the butt feathers on the Cochins!

I LOVE this bird!!

SCARLET is the only one of my Ameraucanas who is friendly. And she is very, VERY sweet!

She always greats me when I come into the barn and will perch on my arm and eat bread from my hand, while I'm tossing it to the other chickens.

I took the screen off the windows in the Ameraucanna's pen so that they can get outside. So far, only Star and Elvira come out.

And they head right for the DIRT BATH...

Doesn't that look like FUN???

DREAM says...

"Yeah? Well, I like it when the wind ruffles MY butt feathers and you don't seem to think it's so cool when I roll in the dirt! What's up with that???"


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