Whew, this heatwave is hitting us hard here in Lillooet! Our neighbouring town, Lytton, hit the highest temperature ever recorded in Canada yesterday — 46.1°C. We weren’t too far behind here at the ranch.
How are we coping? Okay for now. Yesterday Tristan asked Twain “Twain, is it pretty hot outside?”, and Twain, enormous pork smoked sausage in hand replied ‘It’s a good day for a cold sausage, and I’ve got a cold sausage!” At least one of us is managing to stay positive!
The animals are doing okay too, but it’s a big job keeping them cool. Every species has its own sprinkler system to manage, and it’s a delicate balance keeping enough water flowing to cool the animals, but not so much that the pastures turn into mud, causing other issues.
In many ways we are lucky – the broiler chickens and turkeys are the most susceptible to the heat, and our broiler chickens are still small (they manage the heat much better when they are young), and our turkey poults are still in the brooder. Usually this time of year we would still be running the heater in the brooder, but not this year! Right now we are able to manage the heat for the baby turkeys with a great ventilation system we installed two years ago.
The cows and pigs usually do okay in the heat as long as they have shade and plenty of water, but this is a stretch even for them. We’re doing our very best to keep all the Spray Creek animals as cool and comfortable as possible in this unprecedented hot weather.