Sunday, June 18, 2017

Pa Rock's Babies

by Pa Rock
Farmer in Late Spring

Today is Father's Day, and while I wish the three most important fathers in my orbit well - Nick Macy, Scott Files, and Tim Macy - young men who are responsible for the care and well-being of my grandchildren, it is my own little family here at The Roost that I want to highlight this special day.

There are currently ten babies in residence at The Roost, five fatherless kittens and five goslings who are learning the ways of the world without benefit of parents.

The kittens were born in the barn on May 8th and are just now learning to eat solid food.  Three already have homes waiting in the Kansas City area, and the other two are hoping to be adopted as well.  The five are the first litter of Fiona, a good mother who came to the farm last year as a kitten herself.   Fiona was brought in to be a mouser, a field at which she excels.  She stays in the barn and other farm outbuildings - and never ventures far those environs.  Young animals, like young humans, don't always make the best of parents, but Fiona is proving to be an outstanding mother.

The kittens were several weeks old before I finally came upon them in the barn.  I was in the process of getting them used to being handled by humans when, this past Thursday, they suddenly all disappeared.  After a search of the barn, I determined that they were gone.  I was hopeful Fiona had moved them and that they had not been eaten by a predator.  I was relieved yesterday afternoon when all five came tumbling out of a shed that is attached to the chicken coop.  Their new living quarters have easy access to a nice penned-in area where they can play in the sunshine in relative safety.  They are happy, and healthy, and growing like cats.

The goslings, who are about three months old, are the size of adult geese - but still babies.  When I step outside and they see me, they come running, with wings flapping, and honking "Play with us!  Play with us!"  They follow happily along wherever I go on the farm.  The young geese are just learning about their ability to pick on poor Fiona, but to her credit, she fights back and does not cower before them.

I have also contracted for the delivery of a little goat, a male Nigerian, who should arrive, fully weened, just before all of my grandchildren get here in early July.  The Roost will be rockin' then - you betcha it will!

Happy Father's Day!

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