Thank everyone for your help. You guys are such a valuable resource. We had another hen die this afternoon. She was down and not walking around this morning when I got home. I put her in a carrier and brought her into the house to keep her from being attacked. She died before I left for work this afternoon. Alex called the University of Maine, Extension Services today and even they were stumped. They did have some good ideas. We will take our hen to Orono, Maine to have a necropsy done tomorrow. I'm familiar with an autopsy because of being a nurse. Now we do this on chickens! What an informative act. Hopefully we will have some answers. Per the extension center, chickens rarely attack a healthy bird. These birds have no outward symptoms, no cough, no nasal discharge, no diarrhea. We are changing a couple of the brooder lights to infrared to decrease the stimulation. We have to keep the lights on 24/7 to keep them warm, now they will have hours of darkness. A more natural state. We are not changing their feed. Evidently that may stress them more. We do hang cabbagges from string for entertainment, both theirs and ours. With the warmer days (>0-20)we are letting them out of the coop to roam around the barn. We are giving them warm oatmeal, compressed seed/foraging blocks and the occasional eggplant and squash. Next they come into the house and watch TV on the sofa. Well, not really but it is an idea. Thanks again for the moral support and advice. Blogger friends are very supportive and highly intelligent. I took a poll!
This is the story of two best friends who lived in seperate towns, managed two seperate homes with all of the bills, taxes, and house payments of each. We thought that it was silly to continue paying such high bills. We decided to look for an old farm where we each could follow our dreams. We looked for a house big enough that would allow each of us to have our seperate space, enough farm land to be able to have sheep, goats, chickens, turkeys and any other animals that caught our fancy. We needed a barn big enough to house animals and hay. Both of us love the seasons in New England and wanted to remain in the northeast. Both of us were ICU nurses and are under no delusion that we can pay our bills with farming alone. We needed to be located near a large hospital for employment. We work full time as nurses and full time as farmers. That was a lot of needs/wants to guide our search. We combed through magazines, for sale guides, and the internet. We found a place northwest of Bangor Maine that fit these needs. It was a fixer upper in the mildest of terms. This is our story, how we arrived, refinished a 160 year old farm house and are making our dreams come true. We hit bumps in the road at every turn and try to keep a positive attitude. After three years we have come to a change that can't be overlooked. After much thought Alex has decided to pursue her dream elsewhere. Now the farm rests with Ted and I. We will work together to make our dream an actuality. Please follow along with us and welcome to Mainely Ewes Farm.