Little Wolf Nature Preserve

Preserving Beautiful Kentucky

Archive for May, 2013

May
28

The Scoop on Building a Coop

Posted by Theresa

Timm and I completed a coop for the chickens and it turned out great!  Here’s a step by step of our construction project.  We built it together over several days and we think it turned out pretty well!

 

1) Research and plan the project.

Before starting, I did a lot of research on chicken coop design. A good chicken coop needs to be dry with good ventilation yet without being drafty.  It should have nesting boxes, 1 for every 3 or 4 hens.  It needs a roost so the chickens can perch up off the ground to sleep.  It also needs a place for food and water, preferably hung from the ceiling so the chickens don’t knock them over.  Finally, it needs a dust box filled with dirt, because surprisingly, wallowing around in dirt is how chickens keep themselves clean and free of parasites.

Prior to starting, I also researched basic construction as we’ve never constructed a wall or hung a door before.  I found several books at the library to guide us.  I found one that was really helpful which has detailed pictures of how to do the things we needed called The Complete Guide to Carpentry for Homeowners.

 

2) Select a site for the coop.

New chicken coop will be built on the left.

We had a few options of where to put the coop.  Of the 3 or 4 possible places and ways to build the coop, we chose to put the coop inside the barn.  We have an unused space on the left hand side of the barn that already has electricity and water. This space has other advantages as well. It’s has a nice dirt floor, is near the pond and has sturdy front and back doors.  However, at 14  feet wide by about 40 feet long, the space is way too large for a chicken coop that would house less than 10 chickens.  So, we are going to have to build a wall.

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May
17

May Flowers at Little Wolf Nature Preserve

Posted by Timm

White Fleabane

Fleabane got their name from the mistaken belief that these flowers could rid a house of fleas.

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May
06

Tadpoles Galore

Posted by Timm

Thousands of tadpoles

A ditch just outside my office is teeming with tadpoles.  Literally thousands of tadpoles line the 100-foot long ditch.

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May
05

First Copperhead of Spring

Posted by Timm

Copperhead snake sleeping in the vines

Theresa found our first copperhead snake of the year sleeping in the vines next to our pond.  The snake was quite docile, not showing the typical “bite first, ask questions later” nature of copperhead snakes.  Theresa was hauling cut trees off the pond dam and was fortunate that she wasn’t bit.  I wanted to neutralize this threat, but Theresa decided to take a risk and catch the snake and transport it to the forest, which she did without incident.

Copperhead snakes are pit vipers, named for the two heat sensing pits between the eyes and nostrils that are used to locate prey.  Between 5,000-8,000 snakebites are reported annually in the United States with a large majority being copperhead bites.  Copperhead bites are usually not fatal to adults, but can result in intense pain, throbbing, swelling and severe nausea that can last for days.  Permanent tissue damage can occur, especially when bitten on the hands or feet where there is not a large muscle mass to absorb the venom.  Victims should stay calm, immobilize the bite area, keep it lower than the heart, and immediately seek medical attention.  (Source: Copperhead-Snake.com)

May
05

Why Did the Turkey Cross the Field?

Posted by Timm

Wild turkey crossing the Butterfly Meadow

I looked out my office window and saw this wild turkey crossing our large Butterfly Meadow.

  

  

Wild turkey

It’s unusual to see a solitary wild turkey, as they usually flock together.

May
05

Big Spider in the House

Posted by Timm

Spider

We had yet another unwanted guest in our mobile home the other night.  This spider, with its 3” leg span, was walking across the floor in our mud room.  I covered it with a Tupperware dish and put it outside.

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    Little Wolf Nature Preserve is a private preserve located in the Daniel Boone National Forest in Southern Kentucky, USA.

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