Cheeks the stork

Cheeks is doing much better than when this photo was taken a few days ago, and that aloe in the background is doing much worse.

She’s done quite a bit of standing on both feet today, which is an improvement.

She really likes to roost on the edge of the box when she’s done eating. She spends a lot of the day there, watching us come and go. She doesn’t miss anything, and I can tell when she wants to go in her banana box for a nap.

It’s neat how much like a cat the house chicken is these days. Quiet, unobtrusive, just there. Only difference is that she doesn’t come and climb into your lap when you sit down. Once placed there though, she’s happy to stay for hours.

Today I put some oatmeal in her dish, but it was hot, so I went upstairs. She was in her box, and I was going to lift her out to her Rubbermaid in a minute when I came back down. This is post-breakfast, mind you, but there was a sound – “Did she just jump out of her box?” Yes, yes she did. She’d seen me do something with her dish and couldn’t wait to find out what it was.

From outside the window.

She’s been demolishing that aloe. Three arms are missing now, and she’s started on a fourth, plus the other plant. It’s good for her, I’m sure, it’s just wild that she’s consuming so much of it!

back to our regularly scheduled chicken programming

The chickens are having a ball with their dust baths.  There’s quite a bit of spillover.

First dirt spillover out of the bag or box.

Then spillover of chickens bathing in the surrounding area.

Cleopatra is hogging one of the bins, but there’s plenty of bathing outside of the bin.



Cleopatra can spend all day in there.  She regularly chooses to stay in come lunchtime, putting off eating.  Eh, I can eat later.

Poof- the shake-off cloud.

not good very bad

My computer stopped working today in a way that seems forboding-ly final.  It won’t turn on and won’t charge.  No warning signs.  The current suspicion is that some snow got into it.

I’m already emotionally recovering.  The blow is that my computer is my work, and there was quite a lot of data only on that computer.  Now it is currently inaccessible in a deadline week, and I’m not exactly embracing having to re-record half of a book the week before Christmas!

Earlier this week I lost a couple months of photographs in a half second’s bad decision.  Format?  Yes.  NO!  I mean-  ah shit.
Now I only have the pictures I put on here! 

It could always be worse.  I lost loads of pictures of Cheeks, but I did not lose Cheeks.   It could have been three books, but it’s only half of one.  I have the software I need on HW’s computer; I can get by.  Technology can be disappointing.

I feel like some aloe today

Summat wrong with that?

Says Cheeks.

She took a whole arm off of this plant (right), and a couple of beak shaped bites out of another arm.

The evidence at her feet.

Then she took the tip off another plant.  She really ate quite a lot of it, despite the bits she left behind.  Apparently, today she just wanted some aloe.  It’s good for her.  No one else is eating it (I’ve tried, I find it bitter).

Dozing now, after breakfast and making a big mess

This is the box she stands on, to eat, and just to hang out for a lot of the day.  Easy to clean:)  The aloe just seemed like part of the buffet.

chickens in a bag

Of soil.

I bought peat moss, for the first time in years, because it’s a horrible unsustainable thing, since the potting soil I was buying is about 90% peat moss anyway, so it was still a fail.  

Much cheaper, and it doesn’t have the little white things that the birds pick at and sometimes eat.

There are two halves, both being thoroughly enjoyed.

What?

The greenhouse and the baths are largely vacant, because it’s a thaw day, and everyone is outside.

The netting was all down, but there was just enough overhead clearance for chickens.  I tied it all back up for them.

This little one is a little bit smug about being up on the high perch, far above the other chickens.

unseasonal chicks

Who has chicks in winter?  Ursa Minor does.

Ursa’s got four little chicks (living).  Two were already dead.  The future is not bright for chicks hatched at the beginning of winter.  But I’ll do my best to help her.

One piece of cardboard and she’s got a student apartment now.  That’ll be enough space for a few days, as they’ll spend most of their time under her.

I moved her back from the kitchen so the chicks would tumble out so I could get some pictures.

Turns out the chicks were super into some more food.

The other four crazy broody hens (down from six crazies – turns out it IS contagious) are busy playing egg burgle bingo, trying to steal eggs from each other.  We’ll see if any of them also successfully hatch.

Chill and chilly

Melting ice for water.  It’s so pretty.  It looks like thick glass.

It’s a goldfinch convention.  They are usually here with the grosbeaks, but the grosbeaks are late today and the goldfinches have the place to themselves, for a bit.

Cheeks is having a good day.  It’s warm in a sunbeam on a lap and her head is high.  She’s wearing a festive holiday scarf.

She can see herself (and me) in the mirror of my computer screen, which is hilarious.  Do the think the scarf is “me”?

guinea lift

I can’t believe this just happened.  I was closing up the birdies’ coops in the almost completely dark, and there was one guinea that wasn’t up on the perch.  It’s tough; their perches swing, and they fall off, or knock each other off, but they are usually all back on by nightfall.

He was sitting on the edge of the chickery slash confinement module.  I was already crouched beside him to shut the big coop, so I reached out, like, here, I’ll help you up (haha).  He let me touch him!  Not a hint of a flinch.  They’re dopey at night, but we could still see each other. 

I started prying his little toes off of the edge to take his feet in my hand.  Once he was standing on my hand instead of the wooden edge, I stood up with him.  He settled right down on my hand, squeezing my fingers with his feet like he was ready to stay. One foot was colder than the other.

It was Flash, one with the white wingtip feathers.  I raised him up to the perch, but since he was not at all motivated to jump from my hand to the perch, he did not (Oh, I don’t mind staying on the heated perch), and I’m not tall enough to reach their pole. 

I had to stand on a hay bale and stretch over, and then he shuffled his feet from my hand to the perch.  Adorably, the next bird over on the perch then side shuffled over to cuddle, which was friendly:)

Best day ever

The girls have found their dirt bath.  It’s bean awfully quiet in the GH.

I came in and everywhere, filthy chickens.  Chickens walking around with dirt all over their backs, that had clearly just got out of the pool, and of course, a half dozen chickens in the pool.

The Silkies have already emptied out one of their baths (seats four). 

Even Chris is in there, the big rooster.

There’s Jacket girl, pecking snow off my boots.  She’s got her jacket perfectly in place, but she’s also full of dirt.  I think it’s interesting that she grooms her jacket as though it’s a part of her.

The guineas have also found their new long perches.  No problem.

Happy about living naturally