Jungle gym for chickens

Rearranged the henhouse interior and made some big high perches for them.  They all (except for the smallest one, who’s gonna get called Teensy, and remains hilariously all legs, like a plover) look like real chickens now, plush with feathers and their final colours.  They’ve been roosting together like hens on the edge of the boards and more surprisingly, flopped out on the grass, so perhaps they’ll move up a level now.

I wish they liked me more; they flee enthusiastically every time I rattle the door, but then, I tell myself they’re extra twitchy because of the bear.  Twice, a bear has gone in the coop (opened the door) and stolen a bag of food.  No chicks killed.  Twice.  Twice is a bit embarrassing, and the second theft was in the middle of the afternoon.  I was very surprised at that.

Needless to say, reinforcements to the door did not aesthetically improve the chicken coop.

I suspect that the two I’ve been calling Jersey Giants are really Buff Orpingtons, that were from a different hatching and therefore just developmentally ahead of the rest.  I suspect that because I was looking at someone else’s flock, a little older than mine, and his Buff Orpingtons looked exactly like my big birds.  That means I’m going to have to change some post tags.

Helping themselves: neck deep in a bag of feed

Their voices are cracking too; sometimes a whole cluck or a “MaCwawk” slips out among the variety of peeps and cheeps.  Pretty funny.

Having been less than successful with these chicks but with the kinks worked out now, at the sad cost of a few bird lives, now I want to get another batch of hatchlings in a month and do it again.  We’ll have lots of chickens, and hopefully lots and lots of eggs.

I love the indoor grass situation.  It smells great, it’s super clean, and so easy. I wonder what I’ll use in the winter, when the yard isn’t generating greenery.

Despite the four legged mower outside, we still have so much area that needs maintenance, and we’re not talking about a lawn.  When the grass and weeds are waist high, it’s not exactly a Miracle-Gro situation.  I think of mowing as “haying”; I do it with my “electric scythe”.   All the aromatic cuttings get raked up and go in the henhouse, full of insects for them to chase.   In time, I’ll clean out all that material and use it to build new soil.

Anything like that, where the product of one activity is useful for another and it all goes in a circle of usefulness without waste, makes me feel at peace.  Especially if it’s easy.

July 4 edit:  Make that three times.  The bear is making a mockery of me.  The door held up fine, but he ripped the locking/latching devices off and opened it.  I heard the big bang and knew exactly what it was, leapt up and ran out in time to see him exit the henhouse with the bag of feed hanging neatly from his mouth like he was doing some shopping.  I was pissed; I chased his brown butt into the woods, roaring furiously, like an animal myself, but he didn’t let go of his loot.  Started all the neighborhood dogs up though.

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