Our chickens are growing up. The three babies that we had in a bin on the dining room table are now outside full time. We finished clearing out the space on the side of the house and now we have a lovely chicken run. It has quite a few plants for shade and for snacks., and plenty of room to run around. They definitely like greens and I’d get tired of the chicken food, too. It looks like gravel and probably tastes like it too but they love it. Southside Mike, who lives over on Glenwood, warned me about hawks so Jon has rigged up netting over the space to deter them.
Their day begins at 7am when I go out to open their little enclosure. They don’t mind being penned up. When the silky was the only one outside she’d go into the cat carrier we used as a chicken house of sorts, and wait for someone to lock her up. Now that there are three others, they take longer to settle down but they’re the easiest animals to manage I’ve ever seen. I feed them in the morning and again around 6 or 7 so they’ll mosey back into their enclosure. They seem to smell that dry feed; somehow they know when you’ve replenished it. There is a lot of chatter before they go to sleep. Are they catching up on each others’ days? They’ve been together the whole time. They spend their days poking around the space. There are plants, a big table with more plants to afford them shelter, some higher points where they can perch, some shady spots, some sunny spots. They seem happy.
Now that they are teenagers, their appearance has changed . The little yellow chick is becoming a beautiful white bird with black markings. The smallest, the brown one, has developed a gorgeous chestnut color with tiny golden chevrons and the big black one is going to be HUGE. But I love the siiky best of all. I love her white fluffy feathers, her dopey look with that topknot, the fluffy feathers all up and down her legs and between her toes as she steps so high and deliberately.
I don’t know if we’ll ever get any eggs and I don’t care. We have chickens. Our house is complete.