Old McDonald had a farm

It’s a slippery slope, first it’s a couple of beehives, then it’s a few chickens and before long you need a barn. I’m pretty sure if I gave Boo an option, he’d have at least one cow and horse for pets as well. He is a lover of animals. The first night we brought our chickens home he was quite upset to find out the chickens had to stay outside in the coop and he had to come inside without them. He’s a fantastic egg hunter, his normal position is atop his father’s shoulders while they survey the backyard. Boo has a unique sound he makes when he spies a little white egg in the brush. We’ve had to hide the fake nesting eggs from him as he continues to find them and not understand why we want those to stay there, perhaps we should paint them so they aren’t white. We’re still struggling with finding all of the eggs, understanding that as the daylight hours disappear the chickens decrease laying. With the first batch of chickens, we had a little coop and pen so they were protected and trapped 24/7. Once they established a routine, we started letting them out in them morning and closing the coop when they return at dark. This worked well until we acquired more chickens. We found a different coop but the old pen didn’t fit right with it so they all became free range with no problems until Sept. We had two hens go broody, at least we thought they did, and they probably did but somewhere in the midst of being out at night in the woods by themselves they got lost. I understand that chickens don’t get lost, but I’m in denial, they are lost. This week we lost another hen, I don’t think she’ll be back so we’re down to 10 and I’m beginning to panic a bit since at least three of them are roosters which means we’re really sitting at 7 hens and we know that not all of them have been laying since Aug. This week we will be closing in the garden properly so they are unable to escape and things hopefully can’t get into them. I need to put up smaller chicken wire over the existing fencing and then we have to come up with something to create a lid. The current plan involves a dome of some sort so we can still get into the pen without crawling around. Stay tuned for photos.

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