Monday, May 30, 2016

A Tale of Two Flocks


I know all of you are wondering how flock integration is going at the Bauer House.

And by "all of you," I mean my mom. Listen up, Mom, this one's for you. For those keeping score at home, there are 11 chickens living in my backyard and zero living in my house {Hallelujah!}. In my last chicken update, I showed you the coop Jonathan expertly put together to house the growing chicks, and recently we thought it would be a great idea to let them play with their feathered friends.

We did run into one slight snag, though: pure, unadulterated rage. I, um, forgot to factor that in.

The four laying hens were in heaven a few days before the great battle. Jonathan bought two fence panels to double the length of the run. There hasn't been much free ranging since the garden was planted, so they were thrilled to roam a square of grass. Then we had the audacity to cut a hole in the little coop.

{Elsa rules the roost... no, really.}

There were angry, guttural squawks from the big girls and eager advances from the little ones, then Elsa attacked. Queen Elsa, biggest chicken in the coop and the one with the least peck marks on her bright red comb, is really the only offending party. She will pin one to pluck a few feathers, then retreat. Then the small chickens get curious and it starts all over. While I do understand that this is how pecking order is established, and I do think brave little Beyonce is trying to climb it faster than she should, I don't want to babysit.

Enter the separation fence. We drew a line down the middle and prayed no one was brave enough to fly over enemy lines {Spoiler: It happened}. We made the fortress a little more impenetrable and they're good to just look at their neighbors for a while. Unfortunately, the little girls get to live where the grass is greener, so I've been generous with the strawberries and worms on the other side. Perhaps this arrangement will ease tensions.

Maybe I should build a separation fence in the boys' room?

{Note in the middle photo the look of terror on the hen who jumped the fence alone.}

Honestly I have no idea what's going to happen, but there it is. Since chicken chat is all I have today, refer back to the top of this post and enjoy the photo of Nora attempting to keep the peace. She is certain the little chickens love her because they nip at her dress through the fencing. Love at first peck? You decide.

Happy Monday, friends! Grab a burger, thank the troops, and enjoy the fresh air with family and friends.
Make it a great one, y'all.


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2 comments:

The Gifted Gabber said...

Ha! You are a brave woman...children AND chickens? I can barely handle my children. Love your Nora's curls! - Amy @ http://thegiftedgabber.com

Jessica Bauer said...

Ha!! Sometimes I wish I could shut the kids in the coop, too. ;)