Winter at The Funny Farm can be pretty grim. Water dishes have to be unfrozen daily, and the huge ice cubes that were yesterday’s water have to be stashed out of the way so they don’t become tomorrow’s hazard. I can get everything thawed and functional with only two gallons of hot water, but so far I haven’t had to bring out hot water just to open a gate. That adds to the drama, for sure.
Winky the muscovy duck pulled a fast one on the coldest night- we had two nights below 20°f. Afternoons are spent ruining the remaining grass in the back yard and chasing the wild mallards away from the cracked corn dish in the back yard. At dusk, Norman the Goose rounds everyone up and they return to the aviary to roost.If anyone dawdles, it is Winky, so if she is settled in for the night, the rest are sure to be in. That night, the ducks were in but I noticed they were settled into an unusual area in the aviary. I couldn’t find Winky anywhere: brown duck on brown ground, brown leaves everywhere. Not finding her was disconcerting, but where could she be? Morning held the answer: on TOP of the aviary! She had flown up and was perched on a net support! A candidate for the Darwin Club, for sure, as the raccoons can be vicious. She stayed up for hours only coming down when the others came into the yard for afternoon destruction derby. Time to do a little wing-clipping!
Dobby had declined to graze in the front yard for days. His feet get cold and he holds up his paws, one at a time when they get cold. In the photo above, I had just asked him if he wanted to go to the front yard to eat grass and bamboo. He looked at me and held his paw up!
In the photo above, he is a little pouffy because I had just filled his little hot tub and poured nice warm water all over him. In the winter when it is cold, it is tempting to keep him warm and dry, but capybaras can get skin problems if they don’t bathe. So his slave girl gives him a little bath.
Capybaras are cecotrophic. Like rabbits and guinea pigs, they need to eat their poop to obtain more nutrients from their food. That’s a “gravy stain” on his bed, stage left of his driver’s side front foot.
Those are only freckles, but I still consider carefully if he wants a kiss right after “breakfast.”
I’m constantly refilling the refrigerator with animal food. In winter, I have to stash the lettuce quickly before it freezes! This lettuce is in the carport, right outside the door. I bag up each head and
cram gently load it into the refrigerator.
When Dobby doesn’t go to the front yard to graze, he orders take-out. This is a bucket of bamboo, and he is working to get every leaf!
Lots of activity at the bird feeders, now that the weather has softened. Mallards on the roof, pushy squirrels at my feet, and hummingbirds waiting for me to get away from their food.
Ever wonder what to do with all that capybara poop when the outdoor toilet is frozen? That’s right, it piles up in a bucket. It must be completely thawed before you attempt to flush it or it clogs the toilet. That’s probably all you want to hear about that!
These plants have been outside the kitchen door for weeks, but Dobby decided to rearrange them today. He knocked down that gray plastic garbage can too.