Today it snowed. So here on the farm we started learning. :) Kaya got blanketed and the animals were much less enthused about the winter wonderland than I was. Being that it is our first winter on the farm we have had to make some adjustments to our routines and have learned a few things.
Lesson 1: warming the bunny hutch. We have an outdoor bunny. Her name is bunny, creative, I know. She has a little outdoor set up with an enclosed "apartment" up a ramp and a fenced in area on the ground level. Don't worry bunny-lovers, it is entirely fenced in on the bottom as well because we are aware that snakes are opportunists in the summer time and she is a tempting little thing. Whelp, we stuffed her apartment with hay for her to burrow into as well as put plywood sides up on the fencing to prevent drafts. In a bit we will go out and put out a heat lamp for her that is left over from our baby chicks that are no longer babies and have no desire to stay out of the snow. (who'd have thought those birds wouldn't want to hide in their coop) THEIR COOP THAT WE SLAVED OVER AND JUST PUT FRESH DEEP BEDDING INTO. They care not.
Lesson 2: The free straw that we pick up from a local soccer park monthly does not go very far in the winter. Also, it rains here before it freezes in NC so it takes several properly timed layers of straw to be sufficient. The goats, mini donkeys, and horse seem to be satisfied with the current amount though, so I wonder how much of the layers are necessary for them versus how many I want to put down out of over-worrying about them all. I wish I knew what it was like to have fur so I'd have a more accurate gauge.
Lesson 3: Matilda (the kitten we found under the barn this past spring) hates the snow, but forgets that it is outside the second she comes inside. We have had to fish her out from under the barn (her original hiding space) several times when she bolts out the door to oversee what the humans are doing.
Because I default to the principle of everything can be solved with the right food, The hoofed creatures have all had carrots and pumpkins today, the ones with paws have gotten treats, and the chickens have gotten handfuls of mealworms.
I am sure I will return to check on everyone at least one million more times, but in the meantime, I fully plan on internet investigating the best place to get seeds for my garden. I've been stalking my fellow farm-type people on Instagram and have been dreaming of greenhouses since I first busted out my array of winter hats.