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Old 11-18-2011, 09:56 AM   #1
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Chicken Chronicles

It's been awhile since I've written about the girls and their rooster. We've been busy around here getting ready for winter. The other day, the gardens were rototilled. It was so funny to watch the chickens following the rototiller in single file. The rooster brought up the rear--crowing the entire time (not that he could be heard over the rototiller).

I brought some meat treats out--I learned something, chickens will jump straight up to grab a treat. I had two of the plymouth rocks doing synchronized jumps. It was so funny. They would jump about 6 inches off the ground.

Another day, I had to get the chickens into lock down before their usual hour (chickens are creatures of habit). Usually, it takes me about half an hour to herd all the chickens into the "chicken house." Recalling how enthusiastic they were about the meat treats, I brought some leftover roast beef out. I sort of enticed three of the "top hens" with the meat and then went into the chicken house. All 17 came running (if you've never seen a flock of chickens run, it is quite funny). So that I could close the doors, I tossed the cut up pieces of meat on the floor. One of the RIRs (I'd swear it was Myrtle), did the most amazing sliding move (as if she were stealing base in baseball) and snatched a piece of meat from one of the other RIRs beaks. In a blink of an eye, she was on her feet and racing to a corner of the barn under the tractor. I don't think the other chicken knew what hit her.

Another day, I went out the backdoor--Cocky Rocky was holding court. He was on the cement slab that is the back step, crowing his head off, surrounded by a circle of attentive hens.

The egg production is almost at full capacity--15/16 of the chickens are laying. Just waiting for Agatha, the younger Orpington, to start. The O's eggs are a very light beige, almost pink, so it is obvious which of the eggs was the one Prudence laid. Myrtle, on the other hand, is laying eggs so large they don't fit in a container--they are as big as the palm of my hand. Poor thing--that must not be easy. But, she has been laying XXXL eggs for about the last week. And, she's only 7 months old...don't know what's up with that. Unless she's getting more food than the others...

The chickens still make me laugh...I just wish I could get Cocky Rocky to stop trying to attack my back when I go to collect the eggs. I guess he's trying to protect his unborn offspring...

TTFN.
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:38 AM   #2
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Funny stuff...
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:41 AM   #3
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Love the stories, CWS!
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:43 AM   #4
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Thanks, CWS...makes me smile to read about the girls and their guy!
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:49 AM   #5
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My personal opinion is everyone should experience having chickens at some point in their lives. They are really entertaining, easy to keep, and very happy to provide FRESH eggs!
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:51 AM   #6
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How great and so worth waiting for! I hope you'll print these out and keep them in a notebook. Do I smell a best-seller? Hmmm - instead of Water for Elephants, Roast Beef for Chickens......Earthworms for Hens....
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:52 AM   #7
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My personal opinion is everyone should experience having chickens at some point in their lives. They are really entertaining, easy to keep, and very happy to provide FRESH eggs!
I will live vicariously through your posts.
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:54 AM   #8
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How great and so worth waiting for! I hope you'll print these out and keep them in a notebook. Do I smell a best-seller? Hmmm - instead of Water for Elephants, Roast Beef for Chickens......Earthworms for Hens....
I've been toying with doing a blog about my life with chickens...don't have the time, yet, to start one, but am thinking about it...personally, I think Cocky Rocky was trying to instigate a mutiny for the flock to take over the "Big Chickens' House" when he was holding court on the back step...
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Old 11-20-2011, 07:11 AM   #9
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I've been toying with doing a blog about my life with chickens...don't have the time, yet, to start one, but am thinking about it...personally, I think Cocky Rocky was trying to instigate a mutiny for the flock to take over the "Big Chickens' House" when he was holding court on the back step...
Now, there's a title. Or you could blog from Rocky's point of view, starting with his stirring up unrest among the hens -- Life Outside the Big Chickens' House. Keep an eye on those hens; beware if they begin to gather in little groups, clucking quietly to each other.
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Old 11-21-2011, 09:34 PM   #10
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For those who clicked "Thanks"==wow. I didn't realize so many folks followed the Chicken Chronicles. Thank you.
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Old 11-21-2011, 09:43 PM   #11
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Did you know that you can tell when an egg was extra big for the chicken that laid it? The shell is kind of wrinkly at one end. It has to do with the shells hardening in air and the chicken was straining.
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Old 11-21-2011, 10:31 PM   #12
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Hey TaxLady--Myrtle laid a really big egg on Thursday--I thought it was a dooble yolker. It was a perfect egg--except it was a blood egg. Yuck.
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Old 11-22-2011, 01:34 AM   #13
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Cws keep the stories up and give my best regards to the flock
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Old 11-24-2011, 06:03 AM   #14
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We had our first snowfall yesterday in SE Ontario...about 6 inches (10-12 cm). I was wondering how the girls and Cocky Rocky would react to snow....I opened the "people" door, tossed some pasta (one of their favorite treats) a foot or so out. They lined up--looked at me--looked at each other--tentatively touched a toe out, pulled back, cackled to one another, but not one of them would go for the pasta. I think they were a bit dismayed--what? Where did our world go? No, we're chickens and we're not going out there! The pasta was still in the snow at 3 p.m. I gave in--I retrieved the pasta from the snow and hand-fed it to them inside...I know, I'm a softy. I also cooked oatmeal for them for their "evening feed" last night and turned on the water heater on the water hopper so they could drink warm water...time to go see if they laid eggs today (hopefully they didn't knock the hopper off and roost on the heater element). My DH is probably right--I really am a mother hen and baby them! (And, if I were a chicken, I'd like ME to be my chicken keeper.) I've been considering getting those "disks" that vets use to keep temps up after surgery or filling hot water bottles and putting those in their nest boxes...and am resisting bringing any of them in the house!
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Old 11-24-2011, 06:39 AM   #15
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One winter I watched the summer's hatch of two baby crows who were regular visitors to the small pond in front of our house. At the first freeze, they landed at the edge of what was their usual drinking spot but found it hard under their feet. They skittered around on the ice and pecked at it, obviously puzzled but also looking like they were having fun.
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Old 11-24-2011, 12:49 PM   #16
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We had our first snowfall yesterday in SE Ontario...about 6 inches (10-12 cm). I was wondering how the girls and Cocky Rocky would react to snow....I opened the "people" door, tossed some pasta (one of their favorite treats) a foot or so out. They lined up--looked at me--looked at each other--tentatively touched a toe out, pulled back, cackled to one another, but not one of them would go for the pasta. I think they were a bit dismayed--what? Where did our world go? No, we're chickens and we're not going out there! The pasta was still in the snow at 3 p.m. I gave in--I retrieved the pasta from the snow and hand-fed it to them inside...I know, I'm a softy. I also cooked oatmeal for them for their "evening feed" last night and turned on the water heater on the water hopper so they could drink warm water...time to go see if they laid eggs today (hopefully they didn't knock the hopper off and roost on the heater element). My DH is probably right--I really am a mother hen and baby them! (And, if I were a chicken, I'd like ME to be my chicken keeper.) I've been considering getting those "disks" that vets use to keep temps up after surgery or filling hot water bottles and putting those in their nest boxes...and am resisting bringing any of them in the house!
No chickens in the house!!! Aren't the Saints enough??? Slime and poop!! No, No chickens in the house.
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Old 11-24-2011, 12:58 PM   #17
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I was wondering if one could make diapers for chickens...no, you're right, PF, no chickens in the house. Although, when I was in high school, a friend's family had a rooster in the house at night...
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Old 11-24-2011, 01:10 PM   #18
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I was wondering if one could make diapers for chickens...no, you're right, PF, no chickens in the house. Although, when I was in high school, a friend's family had a rooster in the house at night...
That was just to hit the snooze alarm...
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Old 11-24-2011, 05:05 PM   #19
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Now I know what the chickens do when I'm not around...they play mouseball. The game goes something like this: Chicken one (most likely Harriet) catches the mouse. She races away from the rest of the flock. Three chickens (Henny, Penny, and Millie) are hot in pursuit. Henny makes a grab for the mouseball, Harriet retreats to the corner to consume the morsel left in her beak. This game continues with the pursuers changing roles as another chicken surrenders the mouseball, minus one more morsel. Rocky is, I believe, the referee. He stands in the middle of the barn flapping his wings and crowing. I knew chickens liked mice, but now that there are 17 of them in the barn, I hadn't seen them play this game until today. If the mice were smart, they'd move out of the barn.
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Old 11-24-2011, 05:30 PM   #20
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Now I know what the chickens do when I'm not around...they play mouseball. The game goes something like this: Chicken one (most likely Harriet) catches the mouse. She races away from the rest of the flock. Three chickens (Henny, Penny, and Millie) are hot in pursuit. Henny makes a grab for the mouseball, Harriet retreats to the corner to consume the morsel left in her beak. This game continues with the pursuers changing roles as another chicken surrenders the mouseball, minus one more morsel. Rocky is, I believe, the referee. He stands in the middle of the barn flapping his wings and crowing. I knew chickens liked mice, but now that there are 17 of them in the barn, I hadn't seen them play this game until today. If the mice were smart, they'd move out of the barn.
Mouse flavored fresh eggs...I didn't know chickens would chase and catch mice.
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