This is David & Susan Sifford's journal of what we pray is our sojourn of life (Hebrews 11:8-10) along the narrow way (Matt 7:14), even the old paths (Jeremiah 6:16), submitting to the Bible as a light unto both (Psalms 119:105). It is our prayer that these documented moments in our earthly time benefit whom God might choose to edify, but ultimately that God glorifies Himself through them.

Category: agrarianism (Page 2 of 16)

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: Tasha’s 2021 Turkey Chicks

Following close on the heels of Tanya’s turkey chicks, another one of our turkey hens got broody in the barn also, in one of the goat stalls.

Tanya and hers were still in the brooder barn (aka. the summer kitchen), so we didn’t really have a place for Tasha, and I didn’t want to put her in a small caged area like we do for our chickens.

Well, Tasha’s chicks started hatching, so what we ended up doing was drop down a couple of extra OSB boards we had and stitch together two chicken fence-cages into a longer run like in the brooder barn. We then covered it all with blankets and bent one end down so I could lean over and access the inside, and we set up their water and food.

And then it was time to try to transfer her and the turklets. The youngin’s were already starting to walk away from her and explore a little, so we just started grabbing them and moving them into the caged area, and Tasha thankfully kept calm. And then with her, we put a large fishing net over her, grabbed her from within that, and put her into the caged area. Thankfully, that all went rather smoothly. 8 turkey chicks in all! Wow, and thanks to the Lord!

Sadly, 1 died pretty quickly, but the other 7 kept going and growing.

Quite a few weeks later, when they all were much bigger, one morning, one of the young was getting picked on, so, with them pretty close to big enough where we were planning on letting them go soon anyway, I decided to let them free at that time.

Here they are just before we got them going:

Tasha's 2021 Turkey Chicks
More of Tasha's 2021 Turkey Chicks

Well, that part did not go rather smoothly. I couldn’t get the end of the cage propped up with the blankets on, so I removed some of the blankets, and Tasha, who is skittish anyway, just seemed to panic and flew up and out of the caged area and out the north door. Arg! So, we tried to shoo out the turklets so they would stay with her, and they started doing the same thing, flying up and off walls, going all over the barn, etc.

Soon, we were able to get them all out the north door. Mommy was kind of running up the walk path up to the goat fields with a couple of turklets behind her, so we tried to get the other ones to follow, and everyone started scattering. It was quite a mess. We were trying to get all the yougin’s to stay with mama, but looking back, we probably should have just let them be in the cage, as shooing them out caused a lot of trouble.

Throughout the day, 2 of the turklets made it back, hanging around the other turklet group or wherever, and Tasha came back too. And by the end of the day, only those 2 were to be found. Sigh.

In the evening, one I believe went into the barn, the other sat down next to the generator box, and so we got it and put it in the barn. We were praying God might grant more come back, or that we would find them, or that He might grant their safety over night.

Later, as Sue was walking Brodey our dog, she had an inkling to take a bit of a different path, and lo and behold, she discovered 3 sat down next to the orchard gate! Wow, what a gift from God! So, we used a fishing net with them, and got them into the barn. So now, 5 were in the barn, and 2 still missing. And that was it for that day.

The next day, I was walking around, looking around for the missing ones, and walked by the hill of dirt that was the dirt dug out for the root cellar, and lo and behold, God granted I just happen to walk by one and see it sat down in the grass! Wow, another gift out of nowhere! So, we netted it and put it in the barn in the goat stall area where the other 5 were still hanging out.

And in the Lord’s perfect will, #7 never came back. We don’t know if it just crouched down and died, or just ran off, but that was it. But, God didn’t have to grant any of them to come back, and we thank Him for what He did grant, and His answers to prayer!

Today, the 6 are still going strong, and spending their days out and roaming the homestead. Mama never rejoined them at all, and within the last couple of days, she had gone missing. She had slightly injured her wing when she tried to fly out on that mayhem day a couple of weeks ago, but I had a hard time believing it killed her now. However, last night she made an appearance to take a dirt bath and eat some, so we know she’s still alive, and it looks like she might be nesting again. We do pray God grant her safety out there, if He might. Maybe we’ll be able to find her and migrate her into the brooder barn.

And now, without further ado, here’s their video, which includes the release day, and the followups with finding turklets, and the 6 eventually starting to venture out of the barn:

We recognize that nothing we have is our own, and that all things are the Lord’s to do with as He pleases. We thank Him for graciously granting the turkey chicks He has, and we pray we never murmur, and that He glorify Himself through them in some way, and always through us in some way.

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: Tanya’s Octuplet Turkey Chicks of 2021

The Lord granted one of our hatchlings from last year get broody this year, and thankfully she did so in the barn, so she wasn’t out in a forest somewhere, susceptible to ending up being dinner for a predator.

Our strategy was to wait until they hatched, if any did, and move her and them into our brooder barn (formerly what was going to be a summer kitchen), where we have a cage run that has worked well with new turkeys in the past.

Well, as God would graciously grant, she did hatch out her chicks (I call them “turklets”, like “chicklets” but for turkeys 😀 ), and so we grabbed her, and put her turklets in a bucket, and carried them all into the brooder barn, and set them all in there.

Thankfully again, I don’t believe she squooshed any in the mayhem of grabbing her (turkeys are quite strong and much bigger than chickens), and in the final count, she had hatched out 8 youngins’! Wow, that’s I think our biggest haul yet!

But, these things are pretty fragile as we have found out in the past. However, the Lord has granted to see them all through, and all 8 are still going today, and going strong!

I did end up waiting until the day we felt it was time to shoo them out of the brooder barn to freedom to start taking pictures and videos, and here they are:

First 2021 Turkey Chicks
More First 2021 Turkey Chicks

Here’s mama, who after they had grown so big, started sitting on the eggs that were still there:

Tanya the Turkey Sitting on Eggs

And here is their video adventure on their first and second days out!

We are very thankful to the Lord for His provisions and seeing all these 8 through to semi-maturity!

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: 2021 Chick Hatching #2

Once again, one of our hens got broody this 2021, and after tucking her away in the brooder barn, she hatched out a bunch — not even sure how many…maybe at least 9, and I believe they all have made it so far!

Here are a couple of pictures of them all:

2nd Hatching of 2021 Chicks
More of 2nd Hatching of 2021 Chicks

And here’s their video:

We once again thank the Lord for His gracious provisions in granting this next set of 2021 chicks! We are thankful the eggs can go to help others!

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: 1st Chick Hatching of 2021

That time of year rolled around again this 2021, hens getting broody, and some of ours don’t always get broody in the barn or chicken tractor…

One of our hens didn’t come back to roost one night. I think it was the next evening, I thought I’d go see if I could somehow find her out in the woods somewhere, which is where I hoped she was vs. having been eated by a predator. I circled around the back side and west areas behind our house. I headed down one direction, and saw what I thought was a plastic bag in a thicket of weeds with no leaves because it was still winter-ish, and I thought, no way was that the hen. But, lo and behold, it surely ended up being her! An amazing gift from God to find her back there, somewhere I would not usually look!

When we tried to get her, she ran off, but we were able to track her down, and so we took her and her eggs and put them in the brooder barn, and God graciously granted I believe it was 5 chicks, and all 5 are still going today, although sadly, it appears one is having a problem with its foot — she’s walking on it crimped backwards…don’t know if it’s an injury or a disorder. But, we pray the Lord might grant it healing.

Here are a couple of pictures of them all:

1st Hatching of 2021 Chicks
More of 1st Hatching of 2021 Chicks

And here’s their video:

As always, we are very thankful to the Lord for these new provisions, and we pray they benefit His people in some way!

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: 2020 8th Chick Hatching

We are very thankful to the Lord for granting our 8th chick hatching of 2020!

We found this mommy in the barn on a bunch of eggs, and moved her into the brooder barn, and by God’s granting she did her job, and hatched out quite a few! I’m not sure exactly how many there are, although we did lose one a couple of days after it was hatched, but the rest are still going strong!

8th 2020 Chick Hatching
More of 8th 2020 Chick Hatching

And here’s their video. Watching the new life here reminds me of this verse:

John 11:25 – “Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:

Once again, we thank God for His provisions of these new chicks, and we pray they’re used for His glory and the benefit of others!

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: 6th & 7th 2020 Chick Hatchings

The Lord in His graces and mercies granted another two chicken chick hatchings this 2020 — the 6th and 7th!

Here’s group 6. No interesting stories, just a broody mama and her 9 new youngin’s!

6th 2020 Chick Hatching
More of 6th 2020 Chick Hatching

And group 7. This hen has been around a while, and I believe this is her first, hatching 8 new little ones!

7th 2020 Chick Hatching
More of 7th 2020 Chick Hatching

And here’s their video. Watching them here reminds me of this verse:

Matt 23:37 – “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

May we gather as the saints of God in praise to Father, Son, and Spirit, and especially for the Lord Christ Jesus, who He is as well as what He has done!

As always, we are very thankful to God for the new chicks, and the miracle of new life; and we ask Him for continued health and safety for them, and perhaps for them to be a benefit to the farm and others some day, according to His will!

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: 2020’s 4th & 5th Chick Hatchings

The Lord has graciously granted our 4th and 5th chick hatchings of 2020! Both have some interesting stories…

This first mommy I believe was hatched last year, and when older last year was attacked by a hawk! I was able to get out there quickly to scare it off, but she was lying on the ground looking dead. When I picked her up, I realized she wasn’t, and took her into our brooder barn to a place of hopeful recovery. Well, she recovered from the initial shock, but couldn’t walk very well. But over the next few days, God granted she continue to recover, and by His graces she did fully! From all this, I called her “Hawk Girl”. 🙂

And so, when she got broody this year, I thought it’d be great if after all that, she hatched out some chicks, and again by God’s graces she did! She hatched out 6 initially, but one didn’t make it past a couple of days, but the other 5 are still going strong today! I call her “Hawk Mommy” now. 🙂

And here she is with her chicks:

4th 2020 Chick Hatchlings
More 4th 2020 Chick Hatchlings

Now, one day, Sue walked into our camper and down the stairs under the desk, there was a mama chicken and 2 chicks! What? And then we found the nest — up the stairs of the 5th wheel, into the bedroom, in a nook next to the bed. We think she got spooked by a cat, and that’s why she was down stairs. I still want to know how she and 2 little tiny chicks made it down the stairs! 🙂

Anyway, there were quite a few eggs left, and one was starting to hatch, so we gathered her up and the eggs and put them all in the brooder barn to see if she needed to finish. In monitoring the chick process, the one wasn’t continuing to hatch, and another was also hatching but didn’t seem to be making progress, so I decided to go ahead and help, even though apparently it’s supposed to weaken the chicks we’ve heard, but also, if you don’t get them out of the shell, they won’t make it. I got them mostly hatched, and put them back in the nest, and we waited to see what happened.

Well, those 2 ended up making it ok, and another hatched after! And so, she ended up with 5 as well! What a nice special gift from God!

And here they are:

5th 2020 Chick Hatchlings
More 5th 2020 Chick Hatchlings

And this is a video of each group, including when we found camper mommy initially, and a catchup addendum to them all as of today:

We are very grateful to the Lord for granting these chicks, for sparing Hawk Mommy last year, and to bring her this year to perpetuating the flock, for the special camper chicks gift, and for their continued health and safety!

— David

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