Locavore Blog: Bobcats, Chickens and Deer: Oh My!

Thanks to a stream of beautiful days here in Vermont, we’ve been outside pulling in garden produce, picking berries and apples, and working on a bobcat defense fortress for our remaining chickens. If you follow me on Twitter, you’re aware that we’ve unintentionally been operating a bobcat drive-thru the past few days, which led to the demise of only one chicken thanks to our proximity to the attacks and our ability to yell really loud. Here’s a picture we snapped with a trail cam of our visitor:

STC_0007 (400x225)I appreciate the fact that our chickens escaped relatively unharmed, aside from this one:

Dinner. Another reason NOT to name any of your chickens.

Dinner. Another reason NOT to name any of your chickens.

We’ve had to build a sort of chicken fortress that will allow them the ability to roam within a safe and contained space. We do have permission from the game warden to protect our property from the bobcat, but I’d rather see him continue on in the wild rather than meet an unnecessary demise.

IMG_7017 (400x267)Between that project and preparing my new kindergartener for school, we’ve been fitting in daily archery practice in anticipation of the upcoming bow & arrow deer season, which begins officially on Oct. 4.  I had an acquaintance ask me if I was ready for Sept. 1, which is the beginning of early bear season here. I had to laugh. Not a chance!

The appeal of hunting for me is the wild meat aspect, not the trophy hunt. There are too many problems plaguing our commercial food system and much of the commercial meat is raised in an unnatural way. This is my rationale behind my desire to hunt in order to obtain free range and organic meat while also leaving behind a smaller ecological and environmental footprint. While we all have different reasons behind WHY we hunt, these are mine.

In Vermont, three deer are permitted to be taken during archery season – with only one of those allowed to be a legal buck. We’ve been fortunate to have many does on our property as well as one or two bucks. Hopefully any of these deer will show up again this October.This picture was just taken right below where one of my tree stands is hanging.

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