Winter Has Arrived Early

Mayzie eating her morning hay in the snow.

Regardless of what the calendar states, winter has arrived in central Nova Scotia. For the past week, night temperatures have been below zero and in many cases, stayed that way during the day. Yesterday we woke to our first snow fall of the season with a temperature around -17 Celsius. It made for a beautiful sunrise.

dawn-November 30, 2012

Today we woke to -15 and the sun shining. As I made my feeding and watering round, I had to accept the fact I probably wouldn’t get in the few remaining fence poles I had planned to set before winter arrived. The ground was frozen. Still with the mild weather and rain predicted on Sunday and Monday, I held out a little hope, but not much.

The worse thing about this type of weather is the water…or should I say the ice. All water vessels left outside during the night are blocks of ice by morning. The goats, sheep, donkey and pony buckets remain outside for now, but all other water containers are brought inside.

The cold, snowy weather doesn’t seem to bother most of the animals. The ducks, however, don’t like walking in the cold snow, so they’ll waddle along, and then suddenly sit down as if to warm their feet. After a minute, they move a little further.

My youngest son shovelled a path from their house to our house where the sun shines. He also shovelled off a spot of the lawn so they’d have a grassy patch to hang-out on where their feed dish and water basin sits. When the snow gets deeper, I’ll spread out hay to give them a warm, dry place to ‘do their thing’ during the day.

Winter Ducks

In comparison, last year, the ground did not freeze until the second week in January. Until that time, it was mild with lots of rain and, of course, mud. This year, winter seems to have appeared immediately without any break in period.

I have a feeling it will be a long, cold, snowy winter.

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