Sack Lunch or Banquet

0930150937You may have read my earlier post about my project to dry out my sunflower heads and collect the seeds for next year’s crop. I’ve run into a little problem. The mice found a way to climb up into the rafters to reach the hanging bags and chewed into a couple of them to enjoy the nice lunch I’d prepared. That was not the plan.

I climbed a ladder and hung them a little higher over the nails in the ceiling so that the mice would have to jump to reach the bags and maybe (I hope) fall to their peril. The bigger batch of bags was hung even higher and I think less accessible, so we’ll see what they do now that their buffet has been spoiled.

0930151018The excess sunflowers were up on a table where I did not think the mice could reach, and I was rationing them out to the chickens every day. The table got shoved against a wall, however, and I think it was just enough to make it reachable. When I pulled out a few from the pile today, I found a big mound of shells and several flowers emptied of their seeds. Curses!

I cut all the stems off the flowers and threw most of them into the chicken run to a flock of happy hens. I’ll give them the balance of it tomorrow and be done with it. I’ll have to keep checking my brown bag harvest every day to see if the perimeter has been breached.

We had a long morning of repairing to do because we discovered the power to the chicken coop was no longer working. We feared this would be due to mice as well. The 10-minute repair job turned into five or six hours. I’m so lucky my husband knows how to do things. We needed the power so I could set up the heat lamp on a timer to give them a few more hours of light. Between molting and the shorter days, I’m only getting a few eggs a day and I really miss the bounty we’d gotten used to.  While we were working, I saw three eggs in the nest boxes. When I went out to get them later, there were only two and the bedding was damp. Please don’t tell me the hens are eating eggs now!

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About bluestempond

Hobby farmer living at Bluestem Pond in Michigan.
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