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Another year gone by, and the donkey’s doing fine…

Jack the miniature donkey

As the day faded into New Year’s Eve, I did a little walkaround, checking the goats and visiting Jack the Miniature Donkey, who’s a pretty good barnyard pal. I don’t see him up close that often (I hear him all summer), but we get along. He’s cool. Along with the goats and half-dozen cows, they’re Bob and Karen’s charges. I helped care for the goats daily for a couple of years, winter and summer, watering and feeding twice a day, experienced the goat cycle of life and death (well, birth, and occasionally, off to the slaughter). But my tiny farming career has yet to directly encompass livestock. Another thing to do! I think, this spring, CHICKENS!



  1. If you decide to go for it with the chickens, you won’t be disappointed! They’re highly entertaining, and their waste would be a definite plus for composting and fertilizing. If you’re thinking of a flock with a rooster, I’ve heard that Buff Orpingtons are the most docile and pleasant (I’ve seen discussions about that breed at, among others).

    We love our chickens, but we’re currently daydreaming about goats–though it will be a couple of years before we have the space for them.

  2. Yea, chickens! :-) You and I will be in the same boat, then. My first experience with chickens will be this spring, too! Do you already have a henhouse/coop in place?

  3. Hey! I’m just getting a short description and no picture in my feed reader now for this blog. Is that on purpose?

  4. Were you thinking of Benjamin from George Orwell’s Animal Farm when you wrote this? Benjamin is the donkey who watches the whole revolution come and go, and just gets a little greyer on the sides of his face.

  5. Chickens seem to make people happy! That’s cool. I hope we get around to them this year. There were some ornamental chickens running around here a while back, kinda in the background because I wasn’t doing their chores. I liked ’em fine, but I’m looking forward to actually raising some.

    Patrick: Animal Farm reference…how literary of me! :) No, if there’s anything there, it’s purely subconscious. It’s been ages since I read it. Maybe it’s time for an Orwell revisit. (I remember liking Down and Out in Paris and London…but I forget what it was about!)

    Simon: Yeah, I forgot about that, a couple weeks ago I turned the feed into excerpts instead of full posts. I’d had a conversation about newsfeeds, and concluded that, for a blog like this one, everyone who wants to read it should come to the site. It’s not like a news service, hopefully more like a visit to the farm, and there’s stuff on the site that’s not in a feed, like comments and links to the forum. (Ads aren’t even in the back of my mind here, it’s easy to put ’em in a feed as well.) Kinda like Joe Salatin and his chickens, you gotta go to the farm if you want one. :) Dunno, too much time to think, maybe. In any case, I know you have the Small Farm Central site and for you the…convenience of browsing lots of newsfeeds for material may be important, so I’ll make a new full feed and post or send you the link!

    This should work: full feed. Lemme know if there’s a problem!

  6. Jack is so handsome and charming at the same time! I love them.

  7. […] Jack the Miniature Donkey has been amiably hovering around, checking out the construction with his head stuck in the door. Here, he’s hanging close to the Chickenhouse even when no-one’s home. The chickens will soon be his neighbors. He’s a friendly fellow, also quite territorial, and he can kick, so he ought to be good for protecting that flank! All in all, I’m really incredibly excited. I guess the city guy in me is still in there looking out… ;) Tags: chickenhouse, chickens, donkey, nest box, recycling Somewhat related posts: Another year gone by, and the donkey’s doing fine… · Chickenhouse inspection · Welcome to the chickenhouse… · Chicken catalogs · Making stakes […]

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