A job around the clock, U.P. farmer spends nights camping by his chickens to protect them from skunks and raccoons

Positively U.P.

MARQUETTE COUNTY, Mich. (WJMN) – Farmer Jeff at Seeds & Spores Family Farm near Skandia really cares about his chickens.

“We raise laying hens and we also raise chickens for meat,” said Jeff Hatfield, Farmer . “This coop right here is a flock of laying hens. In order to produce the best egg we can, we raise them in mobile coops which means that about every two days we move their coop, their whole housing set up to a fresh spot of grass so they have fresh greens to eat and that way we also can spread their fertility out in a targeted area and utilize that to grow crops.”

A farmer’s job never ends and that is especially true for Jeff, even when he sleeps.

“There is no off switch on the farm,” said Jeff. “Things happen all day, all night.”

Now that his chickens are situated near a wooded area, Jeff keeps an extra eye on them.

“The last week or so, we’ve had an interested raccoon,” said Jeff. “He’s had a chicken or two. Sometimes they just take a little dissuasion to make them go someplace else at night. It’s been nice summer nights so I decided to sleep out by the chickens and just give them a little surprise when he comes around.”

He sleeps in a camper and when he hears something he scares who is ever nearby away.

“Last night he came in,” said Jeff. “I heard scratching at the coops so I just jumped out and scared him. Gave him a little chase and he disappeared for the time being.”

Jeff hopes once they move to a different area, he won’t have to sleep by the chickens but for now, it’s just part of the job.

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