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WalkingWood

(Woodbridge,CT)

All natural, free-range, heritage breed chicken eggs. --- OK, everyone has their own definition of "free-range": mine is "Throw open the barn doors and get out of the way!" Day range is probably more accurate, as I do bring them in at night. Actually, Connie brings them in. She's my 12 year old hen, and successor to Tammy who lived to be 13!. She doesn't give me many eggs, but she keeps the roos in line, and makes sure every batch of new girls learns the ropes, and she insists that everybody get along. All natural, emu eggs from roaming (but not entirely free) emus. --- Stella and Mnck (yep, she doesn't spell very well, but if you ask her name, the answer is clear: "Mnck" and, yes, Stella is the guy.) March, 2011, I successfully hatched one of their eggs, from the incubator, and Truck landed. What a character she is! Then Spring, 2012, we hatched 5 more! The young 'uns share their night time digs with our newest addition, a pot bellied pig rescued from our local shelter. During the day, they are all out with the ducks and geese and sheep and chickens. Unlike chickens, emus need a he and a she to make eggs, typically one egg every three or four days during the winter and spring. That would be their summer and fall if they were still in Australia, but they didn't adjust to crossing the equator - - they are hard-wired. Actually, I'm convinced they are dinosaurs, and I am daily flabbergasted, even after fifteen years of sharing my paddock with them. Truly amazing animals! I use the incubator because I don't want Stella to have to spend 56 days brooding the eggs in our cold winter. Yep, Stella (the he) is the one to rear the young, while Mnck (the she) provides food and protection. And then there are our fiber-critters: llamas, sheep, a few Angora rabbits. Keeps me plenty busy keeping them tangle-free... Recently, I've thrown myself happily into breed rescue for several animals listed by ALBC as endangered or critical: American Blues and Havana rabbits, Welsh Harlequin and Cayuga ducks, Black Spanish turkeys. Three types of quail, guinea hens - - all-in-all, we have no shortage of fertilizer for the few veggies and fruits we manage to get before the deer do! Add three dogs, and a husband, and that pretty much describes our farm.

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