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The Red Dragons Den

April 2008

From Ebay to Emu
You really can buy ANYTHING on ebay!
Continuing Emu in my Kitchen!

April 4, 2008
I'm going to change the way I've been running these journal pages a bit.  So far they've just been copies of posts I made~ mostly about Ebay the Emu~ on some BB sites I frequent.  I just transferred the posts onto my web site so the family could read about Ebay's adventures more easily.  Well~ Ebay is getting older~ and new stuff is going on~ so I'm just going to start writing a little here about what ever is going on at our little Homestead.  Probably won't have time to update every week~ but I'll try for once a month at least!

So~ I know after last months scare everyone is worried about Ebay.  He seems to be doing better.  Still not eating good~ but he is eating a little.  Back in the kitchen at night and on rainy days for now~ for a few more weeks or until I'm sure he's good and strong again!


Ebay looks a little wet in the first pic because apparently turkeys ARE smart enough to come in out of the rain......but emu are NOT!  I had just snatched him out of the rain and run back into the Kitchen with him.  He could have gotten up and gone into Fort Emu with the turkeys~ but he was sitting out in the rain wondering why he was wet!

The Turkeys are smart enough to come in out of the rain!  And they are getting BIG.  I'm reasonably sure my 12 turkeys are 9 Toms and only 3 Hens~ and one of the hens is kind of sickly.  So I guess it's a good thing we like Turkey~ we will be eating a lot of it this year!

Those are Karen's ducks in the middle pic with the Turkeys.  They are getting BIG too!  The turkeys really like the ducks.  I mean.......REALLY like them.  The Toms are only 2 months old~ but they already strut~ display~ and..............molest Karen's ducks.  The ducks don't seem to mind~ but it really bothers Karen!  I'm a little worried about how big we can let all the extra Toms get because there was quite a fight yesterday when all 9 Toms decided to molest the same duck at the same time~ and no one was willing to wait his turn!  The duck just sat there!


So We've been super busy finishing up Fort Emu and the Emu fence.  It was a lot of work but very worth it! (uuummm.....except the Emu lives in the Kitchen again)

Scott and Will really worked hard on that fence and they built a very fine Emu Fence!  I helped a little (when I wasn't sitting on the sofa eating Bon-bons)  Karen, So-chee and Ebay did the supervising~ Lift that bar!~ Tow that Line!

We've been so busy building the fence and taking care of Ebay sick~ I never put up pics Easter~ or the new Chicks~ or the baby geese!  So~ lets see.....
on March 26 my order from Cackle Hatchery came in~ 3 African geese and 70 chickens (5 araucana, 5 buff orpington, 5 rhode island red, 5 silverlaced wydandotte and 50 hatchery choice heavy breed)  They sent 73 chics~ we lost one right away but the other 72 and the 3 geese are doing great!

On the 30th the African Goose eggs I got at the swap meet started to hatch~ got six CUTE little babies from those~ so now we have 9 African geese!

The baby geese have already been for a swim with Karen's Ducks ~ the ducks tried to drown them.  They could care less about being molested by a Turkey~ but they want to kill a baby goose.....maybe they are trying to head off a problem before the geese get bigger?!  LOL!
I included a pic of the two surviving chickens from the batch that hatched on New Years day.  They girls? (well~ I think it's two girls!) Are getting BIG too!

Lets see~ whats next?  I have so many pics this time!
How about Easter?  Mike came home for Spring Break.  I know he wanted to go party~ but he came home and helped us build the emu house and fence.  He's such a good kid.  You know me~ I talked them into coloring Easter Eggs!  I think we all had a good time!

You want to color eggs with our teenagers?

(he's such a good sport!)

So are the boys!

Keeping Mom Happy!

So many pretty eggs!

Can I help?

Can I?

Lets see~ Scott got a present from our friend Vanisa~
Stinky~ and I tell ya.....she STINKS!


Mike got his car stuck in the pond..........the whole family helped wash it off after the neighbor pulled it out!

We went to an auto auction and bought Will a car.  That was a bit bizzare.  It's a 96 Lincoln Town Car in really great shape~ the bidding was at $1600.  Scott asked if I was willing to pay that much for that car...........I nodded......there was a lot of noise~ I think Scott nodded AGAIN and we bought that car for $1775!  What?  I bought a CAR??  All I did was nod!  Yep~ I bought a car when I nodded!  Will seems to like it a lot though~ and it's better than the rusted out smelly 84 Grand Marquis he tried to talk me into bidding on!


I love it here!  I'm so glad we moved to Alabama!!!





April 11, 2008
Iíve been wondering if I should make an update or not. Basically~ he is still alive~ but that may be the bad news at this point. Last Friday almost immediately after I made the positive update that he had eaten and was on the road to recovery he had a bad turn. He vomited an obscene amount of liquid~ much more than I imagine his gizzard could possibly hold. While we had not yet seen a vet because I believed the treatment I was giving was working~ I had spent the week he was sick scouting for a vet that would see him. When the vomiting began I rushed him to the vet.

The vet speculates that he probably caught some type of virus or bacterial infection as a result of moving from the sanitary condition of my kitchen to the outside~ he just didnít have the immunity built up he would have if he had been raised outside. But that is just speculation~ as she pointed out~ IF there is such a thing as cutting edge Emu medical technology she does not have access to it.

She said he was dehydrated and that more than likely the liquid in his body had fed back into his gizzard somehow (she explained it) rather than into his bowel as it would if he showed diarrhea~ and the rush of fluid to his gizzard was too much for him to hold so he vomited. This caused him to become very dehydrated just as it would if he had diarrhea. She recommended that I continue the treatment I had been doing~ but to stop the terramycin as this may have upset his stomach and she gave me some Baytril and Benamine shots to administer daily.

I stayed up with him all night Friday night urging him to drink pedalite~ he seemed to show some little improvement and did stop vomiting. He was not eating again~ I am force feeding him emu food soaked in pedalite~ but he was drinking on his own.

Then he stopped drinking and stopped having bowel movements. The emu book I had ordered came in~ and while I found it mostly useless (it does not even give the normal body temp for an emu in the medical section)~ I did read it cover to cover. I was afraid he was impacted on something he had eaten and that was why there were no bowel movements despite my forcing food into him. The book said his gizzard would be hard if that was the case and his gizzard is soft~ but I was afraid of killing him by forcing food that could not get back out of him. I took him back to the vet on Tuesday and had X-rays taken. There are no foreign objects or obstructions that we can see on the X-rays. Vet speculates that he is using all of the solid I am forcing into him and thatís why I am not seeing it come out again.

Back home~ more force feeding~ now tubing pedalite as well (with benebac in it to replace beneficial bacteria killed by antibiotics). He has become extremely lethargic~ will not come out of his crate. I have to drag him out to force feed him and he immediately goes back to it to sleep. The food I force into his mouth I now have to massage down his throat as well. Has a movement maybe 3 or 4 times a day~ movements are mint green ďpasteĒ consistency.

I called the vet last night. She is out of ideas. Says there is nothing else she can do. Hopefully it is nutritional at this point as we have run a full week of Baytril and Benamine. She suggests I keep force feeding and tubing liquid~ and be prepared that he may not make it.

So sorry itís not a better update. I didnít want to post that he was getting better and then come right back and say he had taken a bad turn~ itís been a horrible week here~ so I was holding off posting until he got better. Looking at him now~ I donít know that is going to happen.




Heís gone.

Ebay died around 1:30 this afternoon.  We went to a new vet this morning.  The vet wanted to euthanize him~ but I began crying so the vet tried some more antibiotics and steroids.  He didnít believe Ebay would survive and tried to comfort me.  The nice man actually hugged me.  Iím embarrassed I became so emotional.


Ebay had pneumonia.  Probably caused by aspirating some of the food I forced into him in the last two weeks.  He was in bad shape and I should have let the vet euthanize him.  It was stupid to let myself get so emotionally attached to him.  I knew there was every good chance I could not raise him successfully.  It was amazing he hatched at all~ and the reason I resisted so many suggestions I write a book about it is I knew very well that we had only proven that I could hatch an emu~ not that I could raise one.  Well now we have proven that I could not raise him.


This mornings vet speculated that he probably has a genetic issue that was keeping him from fully absorbing the nutrients in the food he was eating.  Thatís why he did so well while young~ while he still had yolk to work with~ and began declining despite all medical care~ at this vet and the previous one.  He took another Xray~ there was nothing blocking him up~ Ebay was just starving to death despite my forcing feed into him.


I probably should have gotten a necropsy done~ but it is Saturday and no vets are open till Monday.  Scott and Will buried him shortly after he passed away while I cleaned up his kennel and threw out all his medications~ and Iím just going to move on and try not to think about it too much.  I never should have let myself get emotionally attached to him.  I knew it was a bad idea to start with and I should have stuck to it.  It wouldnít hurt so much now if I didnít let myself think of him as a ďpet.Ē


April 18, 2008

Time for some happy pics~ so how about the birds!

Baby Geese!
3 weeks old

I don't know what kinds~
6 weeks old

Geese AND Ducks!

2 1/2 months old

2 1/2 months old

2 1/2 months old

Chicken and Rooster~
3 1/2 months old

The babies!
3 weeks old

Blind turkey?  We think so
2 1/2 months old


Turkey Strut!

Turkey Strut!

Turkey Strut!

Mean Rooster~
He TASTED good!




That's it for April 2008 so far!~
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Cheryl Marchek


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