Cheeks progressed to spending all day outside. She started eating from the trough with the other hens, then started laying her eggs in the nest box of the coop!
I hardly saw her from the morning post-yelling eviction until the evening.
She would still come to the door of the house at bedtime, or if it rained heavily. Hello. I still live here.I can’t reach the handle.Ah! There you are.Do open this confounded door for me, would you? I thank you.
I don’t know why chickens often get English “I say, old sport” accents in my head.
So funny! Coming to the door like a cat in the evening:)
I was sitting on the sill of my open front door, a convenient place I’ve found for potting up starts, my dirt and trays arrayed in front of me, when the guineas wandered up.
They arrived quite suddenly, maintaining their constant twittering conversation about everything, and they came right up on the deck to see what I was doing. Whatrya doing?
I was so glad I was in arms-reach of my camera. I thought they were after the green stuff, but they didn’t make a move for it. Then, they apparently reached a conclusion about what was happening here, and, inspection done, they turned and left just as quickly, still ceaselessly conversating.Carry on. You passed. I’ll be checking up on you later, Cheeks.
Notice Cheeks was with me at the side of the deck, and she was subject to inspection too. She looked a little nervous- she froze and her eye got big.
Guineas are so funny. Strange, and funny. They’re different. I’m so pleased with this bunch. They roll around like friendly patrol cops on a beat, keeping tabs on everyone, including me. Oh, gardening? That’s acceptable. Hi again, how’s the job coming? I haven’t seen them on the deck before, but it’s great that they come around the house so close, instead of insisting on being cagey distant wild animals.
This little rooster is cerebrally challenged. In other words, he’s kinda dumb.
The last surviving rooster of the refugees from the horrible, terrible chicken place (all the hens recovered and relearned how to chicken, although they are all super small), he gets to stay in with the hens because of his beautiful colouring and mild, meek attitude. His brains, on the other hand, leave something to be desired.
The Colonel is at large in the GH, still the ruler of the roost, and boy is he kept busy teaching the young roos some manners. One flying drop kick at a time.
She took a whole arm off of this plant (right), and a couple of beak shaped bites out of another arm.
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).
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.
I got some more work done in the greenhouse. Specifically, I untied all the strings crossing the top third, that suspend tomatoes in the summer.
You can just see the strings in this pic. So I’m taking them down and crochet looping them up to decommission them until next year. The guineas will be able to fly around in the upper third of the GH again.
This festooning makes sense to me.
Then the irrigation came out, and the pool went in, and coops were shifted – oh my! When HW was yanking out the irrigation tape, he exposed a nestful of a family of shrews or voles that ran scurrying, and the chickens leapt into the air and screamed like little girls! Which made the whole room erupt, and they talked about it for quite a while.
The Silkies noticed immediately that their dust bath was refilled:) by immediately I mean seconds. About ten.
Cleopatra wants in there SO bad. So bad that I was able to catch her, the notorious escape artist, and take her jacket off- she’s all regrown.
Everyone wants into that dust bath. So much so that there was an invasion from outside:
A half dozen chickens that don’t belong hopped into Silkieland to use their fridge-drawer baths (how rude), all the while ignoring that they have a new grand bath of their own:
There was so much upheaval – wood chips and hay and coop movement and the addition of baths and overturning of turf, that the roosters were bleating about “New things! New things!” for about 20 minutes straight. Other than that it was very, very quiet. All must be investigated.
This little adventure chicken got in on the action when I went to hang some long poles for perches at the opposite end of the GH from where the guineas now roost. First, I rested it on the coop.
Whitey got aboard. More impressively, stayed on and rode the pole as I tied up the opposite end at 6’ish, then came to the coop, raised that end and tied that up.
What are you gonna do now, little bird?
That should keep them entertained for a couple days.
All very peaceful, until a croissant comes out. First it was pie crust, similarly discovered by accident – I was eating it within her reach, and she stabbed out her beak- I’ll have some of that!
Multigrain croissant has proven to be such a huge and lasting hit, that I’m like Ok, eat some more of your grains, and then you can have croissant. She’s like I’ll wait. I can carry a box of them through the room, and her little head periscopes out of her banana box, following me.
She gets a wicked glint in her eye when the croissant comes out, and she attacks! I used to break up beak sized pieces for her, but she prefers to rip her own bits off of the source, getting her whole body involved.
Why does she like it so much?
We don’t know, but at least she’s got an appetite.
I stopped this little Barred rock hen who’s been wearing a denim jacket for a while, to see if she needed it still, or if her feathers had regrown underneath. Three of the other jacket hens are out of their coats now.
This one happens to wear her coat like it grew on her, edges neatly tucked under her wings, and a perfect fit at her tail. I never see her jacket askew. But when I grabbed her to look under it, I messed everything up.
Boy, was I in trouble!
The indignation! The resentment! The phrase “ruffled feathers” really took on embodiment. She was pissed at me for messing up her outfit, which she mimed very expressively, starting off with a vigorous head shake, of which I got this neat picture.Grrrrr!What have you done?!
Then she proceeded to adjust herself, irritated as all get out that I’d interrupted her day so inconsiderately. Look at this mess! Now I have to stop everything to fix it, when I was just about to get the good spot on the coop. She went all over herself, digging in her wingpits where the elastics hold it on, combing her wing and tail feathers, tugging her coat this way and that – that was the neatest thing, that she actually tugged on and readjusted her jacket, just like she would her feathers. She wiggled it back into place and flattened it, and put all her feathers back the way she wanted. She’s not over it, though. Don’t think I’ve forgotten.
One of the guineas escaped from my carefully constructed bird shield. It flapped and scramble-ran up the plastic, therefore slipping under the edge of the mesh and out into the clear air.I actually saw it in progress, yet was unable to stop it from happening.It had just enough foot friction, I supposeI’m up here.Now what? Looked neat from inside. I left her up there to figure it out.
Later… how’s that guinea doing?Well, it’s on the wrong side of the mesh, and now suspended, like it’s in a mesh bag. We’re helping!
Its friends (whites only), were trying to help by pecking. Not helping.
I can get them down from here pretty easily though, by bounce, bounce, bouncing them on the mesh, until they slip under the overlap mesh- wish I could say I designed it like that – and flop unceremoniously into the yard they’re supposed to not be able to escape from.
The sun came out and dried up all the rain. Not all – there was a lot of rain. And more wind. This morning, the pig house was upside down. No pigs. That’s never happened before (the pig house flipped, certainly not absent pigs). I can picture them bolting out of there as their house lifted off of them.
Pigs are easygoing, pleasant, optimistic creatures though, so they had no worries about settling back in after breakfast.I had a good time in the greenhouse, cleaning up, untying strings. It seems like such a short time ago we were tying up the strings for all the vining plants to climb- cukes, melons, tomatoes. It’s nice to spend time with my birds when they’re at ease, not just in the food frenzy I get to see twice daily. They spend their down time lounging, and investigating, and investigating new places to lounge. They flop down anywhere. Chickens cashed out everywhere.The guineas really like it under that coop.
What chickens really enjoy is industry – somebody else’s. I was tearing down the cucumber vines in this corner. Moved a few things, paused to sort out my ipod, turned around, and…the whole crowd is in there “going over” my work. Hmm, we’ll just have a look, shall we?