The winter is a blessed time of relative porcupine peace, but earlier in the fall, the dog got a mouthful.
I pulled them all out of his mouth, but he still had a lumpy face. That’s typical. Some quills escape under his skin, and dissolve eventually, or work themselves out.
Many days later, I felt a little prick on top of his nose.
It’s a quill! Worked up from inside his mouth, poking out the top of his muzzle, right where he had a lump. It pulled out easily, and the lump subsided.
The horror stories of migrating quills are frightening. Someone told me about losing their Husky because a quill traveled into its heart. That dog’s first porcupine. What terrible luck. Our dog has been intimate with maybe 11 porcupines now. Apparently, they are irresistible.
On warm days, I let the chickens out to play. Whoohoo!
They resent their incarceration in the greenhouse in the winter. They glare balefully. We are bored out of our tiny skulls! They do not buy that it’s for their own good. We’ve got survival skills, yo!
Which they do. They make themselves at home all day in the forest, scratching. They can take care of themselves outside, even doing some winter camping, but I prefer them to have more protection against the raptors that are hungrier in the winter. So they must mostly stay in.
This winter has been weird. Three times now, all the snow has been swept away in a big rain and warm spell. It’s not a good look. But the hens are happy. They get periodic outings. Not like last winter, when the snowpack stayed a meter thick, and no one came out of the greenhouse for the entire season.
A heavy midwinter rain has swept all the snow away, revealing the mess that lies beneath.
Now all the rabbits find themselves suddenly the wrong colour for their surroundings. No camouflage at all.
They look like ghosts, scampering around on a dark backdrop. But the snow should return, probably overnight tonight. We are in a precipitation event.