Friday, May 11, 2007


Remember the turkey eggs from last post? We are incubating them in Pink Panther's personal multi-species incubator. I know. I know. The chances are slim that the eggs are viable after a cool night, but we are trying. I also know that raising a few wild turkeys is not easy. We are hoping to get them up and going, then swoosh them into the . . . What do you call a flock of turkeys? A gang? Anyway we hope to push them out with the group that frequents our yard and adjoining pasture. It is, if nothing else, a learning experience.

If that project was not enough, I will wow you with the other ways our family has recently interfered with the natural order. Pink Panther found a chicken in town that had fallen off a chicken truck. Honestly, chickens that are on their way to the processing plant are disgusting to begin with and after falling off a moving 18-wheeler it was pitiful. I didn't want it any where near my chickens, but he said he couldn't just leave it to be run over. I let him bring the broiler home to try to heal it. He kept it separated. Unfortunately, the healing didn't go as it should. The chicken got/was invested with maggots. She just wasn't healing. We decided to put her out of her misery.

Pink Panther and I couldn't watch or participate. We let my husband do all the truly terrible stuff anyway. While he was killing the chicken, he saw movement under some cedar logs that have been stored since Katrina. He thought it was a skunk. Just what he needed. What it was was a feral cat and her kittens.

I hate feral cats. Why people let their animals roam around and produce wild versions that produce more wild versions that produce more wild versions, I cannot imagine. Ferrel cats disrupt nests of all sorts of animals and leave a wide trail of destruction of nature. So we captured the spitting, scratching bunch of kittens. We are raising them now. If they had been left with the mother any longer, we would not have been able to catch them. Now, the kittens will be neutered or spayed and hopefully given to someone who wants a cat.

So, in just one day my family has agreed to the care and nurturing of three turkey eggs and three feral kittens. Do we interfere too much?


Susan said...

Wisteria, good for your for taking in those kittens. A couple of years ago we had some feral ones in our yard, too, but I never could catch them. The mother cat kept moving them.

A good friend of mine also kept a couple of those chickens that fell off a processing-plant-bound truck, but hers were healthier than the poor one Pink Panther found. My friend's lived quite a while. That is a sad story and certainly makes me wonder exactly what we're eating when we get nonorganic, big-company chicken.

ZBTzahBTzoo said...

Your heart's in the right place, and you're not creating any problems, you're solving them, so how could you be interfering too much?

We once took in a few feral kittens whose mother we found dead in the woods. We used the ol' Looney Tunes method of bait under a crate propped up with a stick attached to a string. Two of the kittens domesticated nicely; one was quite nasty and aggressive, so my then-husband did what he does (used to do, anyway) with feral cats that cause problems for humans.

I don't know why people let cats run loose without spaying or neutering them, any more than I understand the "just one litter, to educate the kids" mindset. It's sad. Actually, it really ticks me off.

Those sure are cute kittens!

wisteria said...

I grow my own chickens because I live so close to the center of chicken processing. UGH!!! Farmer's don't get to choose what to feed or add to the water. One person in town got a batch of feed that was "too hot." I read that to mean too chemical laden. Bunches of the chickens in their house died before the company could replace the feed. Of course, the farmers were penalized for the loss of birds.

Z, I'm hoping we got these early enough to imprint good socialization. I wonder if there is a LIST for cats?

Susan T. said...

You know, Wisteria, I remembered that another chicken my friend found could not even walk. It was too top-heavy.

I spent part of the afternoon looking around (on the Internet) for sources of grass-fed, organic chickens. The more I read (and see) about the big-processing places has led me to look for other sources. Even the Bell & Evans chicken breasts in the gro. are just too darn big. Whatever happened to regular-sized chickens?

wisteria said...

Our love affair with chicken strips has pushed the poor chickens to be Dolly Parton imitators. How wonderfully easy is it to cook a few strips to toss on a salad or throw a few boneless, skinless chicken breasts under the broiler for a low fat meal starter. Dealing with a whole chicken is much messier and time consuming.

Angela,MotherCrone said...

IT sounds like you are interfering exactly enough. What a summer project!

MomToAnAngel said...

Good luck with hatching the eggs, a few years ago my kids had the pleasure of hatching baby chicks in their hands! Way cool! The experience was priceless. Best wishes on this!