But when I do, it’s a waltz.
Nosey the Nosy thinks that I have a chicken-shaped void in my life, and she’s the chicken to fill it.
I see that you don’t have a house chicken at the moment. I’d like to leave my resumé.
It’s true, it’s been a long time since Cheeks moved out. Nosey has an unusual degree of interest in the house. With the door always open and the screen on, she spends a lot of time standing on the threshold looking in.And riffling the screen with her beak.I know this opens somehow!
She work from one side to the other, worrying it. She hasn’t figured it out yet though.
Until the day a screen magnet snapped to the door, holding the screen open.
She strolled around the mud room for some time, inspecting, looking around. The “up” things were really interesting. As were the knots in the wood.
I let her be.
I was walking back and forth to the door, and she’d look at me and walk towards the door (I was just leaving!), then watch me, and seeing I wasn’t actually shooing her out, turn around and resume inspection (Well in that case I don’t mind if I stay). Who says chickens aren’t smart.
Inspecting the boot tray.
She stayed in the mud room, just peeking into the house.
It’s sunny, it’s Saturday. The house is a mess, the woods are a mess, I have so much to do but will probably do less. 2/3 through that I thought I should make it rhyme.
In celebration of shirking, here’s a chicken in the act of discovering me lying on my back in the weeds.
All chickens have their own unique chickenalities, but some chickens distinguish themselves more than others. Nosey has been her own bird from a young chicken, and unlike everyone else, is rather tame. She got her name from always being excessively interested in my business, and always really into being near me. She’d be the first at the door, have her beak up in whatever I was doing, sit on my shoulder, and generally tag along or be underfoot.She’s all grown up now, and her first adult summer has seen her create some real habits of behaviour. She’s still excessively interested in my movements, popping out of nowhere anytime I come out the door, following me down paths, literally underfoot all the time, as I frequently trip on her or accidentally kick her while walking, as she darts in front of or between my swinging feet.When I prepare their food, stirring water into the bucket, all the hens gather and stretch their necks over the edge, but Nosey runs laps around the bucket, then stands on top of my feet to stretch over the edge of the bucket. Then she follows me to platter after platter as I fill the “trough”s, and dives into each one, then darts to catch up with me at the next serving, as she has to be the first beak in. Sometimes she’ll follow me all the way back to where I put the bucket away at the end of lunchtimeShe walks with me like a dog heeling, right next to me on the trail, and her pace is a little faster, so she’ll get ahead of me, then pause for me to catch up, then walk right next to me, get excited and get ahead, then pause again. I’ve never had a chicken do something like this before. It’s very pet-like, very trying to please, or connect.
She’s very interested in the house, hopping up and watching me through the screen when the door is open. She just seems more connected to me than she is to the other chickens, although she’s part of the main “hangs out around the house during the day” chickens.
She’s the only one that allows me to touch her, and I do almost every day, stroking her chest. She gets all uncomfortable about it and it’s clear she doesn’t like it, but she lets me. The other hens will leap and squawk when I try a stunt like that.
When other people say pretty much anything starting with “There’s this one chicken”, I know they mean Nosey.
“This one chicken is out here looking in my boot!” Nosey.
“There was one chicken that came right up to me”. Nosey.
I heard this one go down: My husband was outside, and from inside I heard his yelp, and then indignant complaining out loud. His tale of woe – he was standing outside, eating an apple, pensively watching the chickens, and as he stood between bites, with his arm relaxed at his side, “this one chicken” leapt up and knocked the half eaten apple out of his hand.
Of course, Nosey had the apple.
You again!? If rabbits are joining us, I’m leaving. I guess she got over it and decided to share.
I’ve seen this rabbit around more recently than the pictures were taken, and she seemed hugely pregnant, with her belly dragging on the ground. So no wonder she was too hungry to wait for the chickens to go to bed to glean.
What? Nothing to see here. I’m brown. I almost didn’t see her at first; she was holding still. Set down a basket for two seconds and it draws a crowd. …and a fancy caterpillar.
We had rain! (Blessed rain!) Dust baths are closed, mud baths now available. I was pretty surprised to find this little enthusiast digging in. Really digging in.
Naturally, onlookers.Because when you’ve planned to go to the spa, you go to the spa.What? Some people pay good money for this.The Colonel included for dirtiness comparison. Yes, the Colonel is still the big boss, my v first rooster from my v first collection of chickens. What? I just got out of the bath!Helloooo, boys!
Next door, the retirees were getting into it too, with much more reserve. It’s nice to see the Brahmas doing something fun. They’re always so serious and often seem to be just existing. This got some more facial expressions out of them though. They’re like cats in catnip. They get the zoned face, and they scratch, like, Can’t help. Myself. Must scratch in this. And then they roll around, and do some What are you looking at?
Yay for rain. A rain storm, even. The chicks even got put in the greenhouse with their moms- huge day! Huge! I got my rain barrels almost all filled again too, in one day’s rain – that’s a relief!
This is what happens when you give chickens yogurt directly out of the tub.
The little (lone) Silkie chick has just had one extra puffy tail sprout out today, along with a tiny head crest and tiny feet feathers on those little black legs. Looks especially good with evening back-lighting. It’s funny what a transformative difference a day makes – chicks grow so fast. Feathers just pop out here and there, and they go through some pretty funny stages.
This poor little chick is now only one third the size of its nestmates, which are bigger than some of the other chicks get before their Moms move on. Mom is very patient.You know you’re too big to get sat on when…
This is the body attached to this head. Hey, my neck is warm. It’s stretched right out, and still trying to get some baby chick cuddles, meanwhile it’s almost as bulky as Mom. Like a dog who thinks it’s still a puppy. I can totally fit on your lap, I’ve done it 100x…hmmm. Not working like it used to.
This is the box princess and clan. She now goes in the coop (well, I’ve moved the box inside the coop, and they still use it- and that’s its own story), but they still settle down together pre-bedtime outside the coop.
I thought now that the little keets had been introduced into society, they would belong and stick around, and that they would start sleeping with the others (in the greenhouse). No. Mom makes herself really scarce, staying on the weedy sidelines during the day and disappearing at night, so I get to worry. Galahad comes whisking into the greenhouse late and in a hurry now. I know he knows where they’re spending the night, but I can’t find them.
There are three sets of chick/s running around at the moment, that I see have yet to be introduced, my bad…
The other White Chocolate hen, sister to the loaner, has three chicks; the shirt chick was adopted; and this little Silkie hen has three- two Cheeklings and a Silkie chick (got rescued into the greenhouse on rain day).
This particular hen’s quirk (they all have at least one), is that she does not, ever, want to go to bed in the coop. Instead, she hunkers down in the grass, in the exact same place, every night.
Normally I train them to go in a box, say, in their chickery days, and then I transfer the box after dark to a lock box.
Not this one. I have to bring the box to her. She hunkers down; I set the box near her.Well my word, a box! Look at that, kids! How ideal for our purposes!They move right in. Then I pick up the box and shuttle it into the coop.
The evening box ritual. Every night. Well I never! A box, how nice.Today, because it was raining and the new chips were probably exciting, she settled down under the pine tree – daring!