Lately, we've had an overnight visitor. All the fires have driven the wildlife deeper into our neighborhoods and the animals are hungry!

I have been putting apples out on the lawn to feed the deer. This was after we noticed that they came through and totally cleaned out all our annuals and perennials! Here, two different large bucks came through on two different nights. This is eight feet outside our back door. :)

Really kicking up the dirt here! The more dirtier, the more cleanerer! Showing those two onlookers how it's DONE!

One of the 'old ladies' has made herself a deep 'bowl' to bathe in, almost level with the ground!

Here is one of our 'babies', we have 3 age groups of chickens, 'old ladies', 'tweens', and 'babies', she was very curious about my camera!

In my full hive inspection today, I found a VERY healthy and happy hive. The two deeps and top honey super were very full of calm, hard working bees. Temperature was 72 degrees and overcast but the skies were bright. The bees were calm and left me alone ... until I started shaking them off the honey frames. Then I found myself in a frightful swirl of bees but no worries - I was fully protected.

I have not noticed much of a mite problem but I know they are there, so I treated with two strips of Apivar in the brood chamber. I will come back and remove those strips in early October.

Meet SPANKY, our new rooster! Though we didn't raise him, he is sixteen weeks old, about a week younger than many of our hens. He has 21 female companions now and already, here is very protective. We just love him already! :)

We got him from a nice couple in Olalla, Washington. We are very grateful. :)

Bill Cosby's horrible crimes aside, he was a very funny and entertaining comedian back in the day. My favorite routine of his was always "The Chicken Heart that Ate New York."

Every time I walk out to my Crop Circle garden now, I think of that when I see this monstrous fennel. This picture doesn't do justice to the real scale of this thing. So now, I have my Fennel Plant that's Eating My Garden!

I can't help but take a pinch off of it every time I pass by. Keeps it in check. ;)

Here in the Pacific Northwest, cherry trees are everywhere... And this time of year, there are thousands and thousands of cherries on each tree. I went out today to pick some cherries and got this large bucket full of just off of a couple of branches. Usually the birds and raccoons will have gotten them all, but this tree is such a prolific producer... There is always plenty left over!

As anyone who raises chickens will tell you, no watched pot takes longer to boil than one watched while waiting for young pullets to lay their first egg! Generally, chickens come into lay at about 20 weeks.

Our 'Tweens' started laying today, at 18 and a half weeks. These are ISA Brown pullets that we got last February. We all them 'Tweens' because we have chickens that are much older and another batch of pullets that are five weeks younger.

Here is a current view of our back yard Paradise! The deer, rabbits and squirrels love it, as do we and our occasional visitors. :)

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