The year began with eleven house cats and ten foster cats; our two house dogs, one foster dog and three livestock guardian dogs; twenty-seven chickens; thirty-five sheep; fourteen ducks and eighteen quail.
Early January saw the processing of four chickens and four quail. One sheep and one quail died. The month also saw the arrival of a further five foster cats and two foster dogs; and the departure of five foster cats and one foster dog. February saw the death of one of our sheep and the birth of three kittens to one of the foster cats, one of which did not survive past three days old.
March was a busy month. Two of the foster cats, the remaining two kittens that had been found under a tree, went to a new home as did one of the foster dogs and one of the livestock guardian dogs. One Chantecler chicken was found with a broken neck and so was dispatched. Three Muscovy ducks were sold. We lost two sheep and sold four. Lambing began with the birth of two sets of twins, sadly one set were lost, followed by the birth of a single lamb.
April began with the remaining foster dog moving on to a new home.
The year began with eleven house cats, the four kittens that were found under a tree and four other foster cats; our two house dogs, one foster dog and one livestock guardian dog, our other livestock guardian still being missing; twenty-eight chickens, seventeen sheep, thirteen ducks and four geese.
During January the foster dog moved on to a new home, and was shortly thereafter replaced by two young bitches. One of whom quickly moved on to a new home. The initial foster dog returned and left again during the month. We traded Chantecler eggs for a pair of Coturnix Quail. February saw the return of our missing livestock guardian dog; the re-homing of two of the foster cats, and the addition of six foster cats, although two only stayed for one night.
March began with the culling of one of the ducks. Towards the end of the month there was the addition of a further two foster kittens, and the month was seen out by the arrival of our first 2009 lamb. April saw the birth and death of four kittens and the loss of the two foster kittens that arrived at the end of March. It also saw the loss of one of our sheep and her premature lamb, another lamb, a chicken and one of the ducks went missing. There was the addition of one foster cat and the re-homing of two cats and the fostered dog. Six lambs were born, three ewes and three rams.
May began with the birth of a ewe lamb and the culling of four chickens and one duck. As the month progressed we had a further four lambs, two ewes and two rams, and a gosling hatched. Another duck went missing. The last days of the month saw the hatching and loss of two ducklings, and the hatching of a further four ducklings and three chicks.
June began sadly, with the loss of our dog Zeus. During the course of the month we had a further thirteen chicks born, two sadly didn’t survive. We purchased 21 Coturnix quail chicks, one didn’t survive. Another duck went missing. On the last day of the month we added three pigs.
July was a quiet month for the larger animals, with the only change being the moving-on of four of the foster cats. It was a very busy month for the chickens and ducks, with the hatching of a total of thirty four ducklings and nineteen chicks. Sadly for various reasons we lost five ducklings and four chicks. Unfortunately towards the end of the month one of the adult Chantecler roosters and two of the bantam hens went missing.
August started with a very short term foster of one dog for a weekend. And the hatching of six more chicks, sadly one did not survive. We also lost one quail. During the month we lost another of the bantam hens. We had a further two chicks and two ducklings hatch, but lost two of the older chicks and one of the new ducklings. We purchased three sheep and sold one. We started fostering another dog, who soon became a permanent house dog.
For a period in September we had three extra people staying in the house. Unfortunately during the course of the month we lost one of the pigs, five chickens, three ducks and one quail. October saw the loss of a pig, three chickens and a duck; and the arrival of a cat for fostering.
November started with the sale of the three Toulouse geese, and continued with the sale of the last goose and eight of the Muscovy ducks. Fifteen Muscovy ducks were sent for processing and unfortunately one disappeared, leaving us going into December with fourteen. We also lost one of the quail. During the month two of our foster cats moved on to new permanent homes and a new livestock guardian dog came to live with us.
December saw the processing of the remaining pig, three sheep and five chickens. We also lost one quail. Another foster cat came to stay with us, and a small dog came for a short visit over the holiday period. New Years Eve saw the unexpected arrival for fostering of one dog and a cat with four kittens.
The year began with twelve house cats and two dogs. In May twenty-five Chantecler chickens and a Maremma livestock guardian dog for the barn were purchased. In July twelve Shetland sheep and ten one month old Muscovy ducks were purchased. Sadly one of the chickens was lost in an unfortunate traffic accident. One of the sheep gave birth to a healthy ewe lamb. During the month we fostered five dogs, a bitch and her three puppies and a single bitch. In August we purchased a further four sheep. The single bitch foster dog was still with us, we found four orphan kittens, to become barn cats, and were pet-sitting for a further two cats and two dogs, not at the same time. Sadly a duck and a chicken were lost.
September saw the culling of three chickens, another chicken got sick and sadly didnt recover. In October our cat George died, it was very sudden and unexpected. We started fostering again and had a single bitch come to stay. We bought six geese - three Toulouse, two Emden and one Toulouse/Chinese cross, unfortunately two - an Emden and the cross - of them escaped and didn't return. The body of the cross was found in a nearby field. We purchased five more Muscovy ducks.
At the begining of November we added another Maremma livestock guardian dog, who proceeded to go AWOL. We had a male dog come for fostering then the bitch foster dog leave. Two young cats came for fostering. One of the ducks got out of the barn at night and disapeared. We got three new chickens, Steve dealt with our excessive rooster population, culling 5, and we lost one in a canine related incident, leaving us with sixteen chickens going into December. December saw the addition of a Bantam chicken and eleven chicks, taking us back up to twenty eight. Our second LGD remained AWOL; we fostered a further two dogs for a short period and took in another two cats for fostering.
I think it is safe to say 2008 was a rather busy year!
Statistics last updated April 5th 2010
For further details on a particular species please visit the appropriate section of the website:
Our Homestead for
Ducks, Geese, Quail,
Livestock guardian dogs,
Our Furry Family for
fostering. Or you can always check out the
blog where there is likely to be a fuller description of any population changes.