Ahh, it’s summertime and the living is easy….oh wait, no…. It’s summertime and there is an awful lot of things to be getting done.  But you know how it is, critters need tending, the bugs want to attack the garden, have to harvest stuff before it is attacked by bugs and then, of course, the lawn wants to grow and grow.  Plus, since it is hot you go out, do stuff and the energy is drained right from your being.

DucksDucks

So let’s start out with the birds.  The ducks have been laying.  It started out slowly, but we have built up to between 8 and 11 eggs a day.  Even at 8 that ends up at over four and a half dozen a week.  They were building up for a while and we got to the point that something had to be done.

Duck Eggs

Luckily we have some very friendly cottage food laws around here, so we were able to sell duck eggs to people.  This week we sold a dozen to someone at the wife’s work, 6 dozen to one local store and another dozen to another local store.  I still have duck eggs and since they keep churning them out looks like next week we’ll be able to make another egg run.

EggsThis week we sold a dozen to someone at the wife’s work, 6 dozen to one local store and another dozen to another local store.  I still have duck eggs and since they keep churning them out looks like next week we’ll be able to make another egg run.  The good news is that this week their eggs made enough money to cover their food, so that’s a plus.

However, in talking to people it seems that there is a market for duck eggs.  Also as it turns out, goose eggs.  I had been thinking about adding some more ducks and chickens next year.  I had been looking at adding some turkeys too, but I may have to add geese to the list of fowl that will be running about.  It should be rather interesting.

ChickensChickens

As for the chickens, I forget if I posted before, but our 6 female barred rock chicks ended up turning into 3 hens and 3 roosters.  Right now the roosters are goofy and fun to watch, so they will be spared, at least for a while.  One is starting to try to crow and it is rather humorous to listen to.  By the end of this month or perhaps next month, they should be laying some eggs as well, which will make things interesting as well.

They’ve now got their own little childrens pool that is filled with dirt and sand to allow them a nice dust bath.  They kept digging holes that resulted in ducks under the coop.

Bees

Bees

And then we have the bees.  I had the one hive that made it through the winter, had a good chunk of bees in it and I pulled a Nuc out of it.  I thought that would relieve the pressure enough, but it seems not.  I had gone out to check on it and it would seem that a chunk of those bees left for greener pastures.  My package hive that was added this year seems to be doing well and the Nuc is rather happy with life.

 

It looks like once again I won’t be getting any honey, but I have 3 hives going here and one at my mom’s.  With some good fortune, I can get these to get through the winter and we’ll come out in the spring to strong hives and hopefully our first honey harvest.  I kinda think that I’m going to end up not getting honey, not getting honey and then when I do I’ll get a whole mess of it all at once.  Good thing the stuff doesn’t really go bad, right?

Beeswax Foundation

Well, it was time to add in some hive bodies.  The over wintered hive had two deeps and they are working on refilling them.  I guess I can take the honey super off, as I don’t think I’ll be getting much honey this year.  The package hive got its second deep added and then I added two medium bodies to the Nuc.  As there are still a number of blooms about and hot weather I’m hoping they’ll draw out their comb and we can start working on building up stores for the winter.

I will have to do some mite checks, I need to review how to correctly go about that and get good numbers.  I’m sure that will be another post in the not too distant future.

I’m also pondering if there is a better way to have my bee hives arranged and if there is anything different that I need to do as we start preparing for the winter for them.