Sunday, March 21, 2010

Free Range No More!

Well as most of you know my father has chickens. For some time now we've talked about increasing the height of the fence on the coop. The chickens fly out, wondered around the yard (pooping all over the place) and yesterday morning ate the freshly planted lettuce seeds out of the garden. This last act was the end of the line - you don't mess with Pappa Deaner's garden and since it was a warm day, well we tackled the CHICKEN COOP!
In addition to the chickens making a mess of everything outside their coop, dad's only been getting 1-2 eggs a day from all those chickens. I kept suggesting that the chickens were laying elsewhere.....well, we found out one spot yesterday - under the blackberry bush! All kinds of eggs under that thorny, monstrous sized blackberry bush in the back yard. Of course we can't eat the eggs now, but how in the world do we get them out of there so they don't stink to high heaven when the weather warms up a bit? ugggghh
In the beginning......the pen was surround by a once white picket fence. Unfortunately this fence wasn't exactly tall enough to keep the chickens cooped up (as you can see a few escaped ladies).

A few essential tools required for any 'fix it' job.

The building of the door frame.....

Johnathon helping Pappa Deaner set the post, hard work for Johnathon as you can tell!

Johnathon learned how to set a fence post and he so loved helping. He did a great job on the fence posts. Pappa Deaner and I liked not having set them all ourselves. Plus he made a good gofer, well we'll work on the gofer part - has a hard time 'finding' the items he was going for so then I'd have to go show him what we were talking about that was usually right in front of him and exactly where we'd said it was. He'll learn, there are a few more "home improvement" projects scheduled for this spring that he'll get to help with.

In process.....where we were when we took our lunch break
The new door is hung, now we can get into the pen (not sure why anyone would want to be in there, but should you so desire you can get in there easily now).

The new fence/pen is DONE!! And the best part is that this morning there were NOOOOOO chickens in the yard or garden or flower beds or field. All chickens were accounted for inside the coop. WoooooHooooo
....and where we/dad pulled up the old fence that had sunk into the ground and unearthed many a ground worm I learned that chickens LOVE worms. They were quite happy with the freshly tilled dirt and had a heyday with all those worms. The little black and white chicken has hawk eyes, spotting a worm from across the pen and running to retrieve it - somewhat comical to watch.

.....and the chickens! There are yellow, brown (I know these are New Hamp Red's), black, black & white (2 different kinds) and the turkey that showed up one day. No kidding, my parents came home and this turkey was walking around the coop. Dad opened the door, he jumped in and made himself at home. It's not a wild turkey but we're not sure where he came from???
Well, I have a full day so I'd better get to it. Roast is in the oven and is smelling wonderful, need to peel some tators and get them boiling....take a shower....edit a few pictures....arrange some silk flowers for a May wedding....bridal consult at 2pm and finish a baby afghan. I really excited about my to do list, today is the first day in a week that I've felt like well, felt like even getting out of bed. Only made it to work ONE day this week due to a respiratory/sinus/ear infection that settled in last weekend and just wouldn't leave!

1 comment:

  1. Love the new coop...You should have called JOHN to come and help!