Saturday, August 17, 2013

Mean Girl

A few weeks ago we attempted to integrate two flocks, our old girls (2-3 years old) and our new pullets. Our Speckled Sussex Ollie, whom we affectionately call Speckledy Butt, tried to kill Eggs. 


Keep in mind that we spent weeks slowly introducing the ladies to each other. The little girls spent time in the yard, separated by fence. Then in the run, while the big girls stayed in their coop. Then we conducted supervised visitations. All seemed to be on schedule. We snuck the little ones into the roosting area in the middle of the night. The next day, we discovered Eggs had a huge gash in her head thanks to Speckledy Butt. We weren't sure if she would survive. 

After the attack, we brought all three pullets back in doors to live in the brooder until Eggs could heal completely. In the meantime, I researched our options. Top of the list: winner, winner chicken dinner. I haven't eaten chicken in two years and I was ready to serve that mean girl up for supper. Luckily, my good friend Lauren over at Scratch and Peck http://scratchandpeck.blogspot.com/?m=1  offered up a great solution: pinless peepers. 


Like blinders for chickens, pinless peepers clip on and prevent mean girls from zeroing in on the helpless little ones. They are also great for feather picking. We ordered ours through EBay for just $1.47. 

Today is the true test. All of the ladies are mingling and so far, so good. Next up, googly eye stickers for said peepers. Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Chicken Fountain

On the whole, chicken keeping is super easy and lots of fun. However, I am not a fan of filling up the water container. It gets dirty quickly and can accumulate mold which is unhealthy. Based on some research, we started adding a bit of apple cider vinegar which has health benefits for the ladies and cuts down on the muck. But I still wasn't happy with the water situation.... Until now. 


Enter the Chicken Fountain. It's easy to install and uses your hose to maintain a constant supply of fresh water. No waste. No mold.  

Check them out at http://chickenfountain.com/


Saffron approved this message. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Our Little Urban Farm

Last winter, our good friend Kalki, owner of eScape Landscapes, installed some raised beds and a run for our chickens. We love the way our backyard is shaping up!


The Midtown Chicks are especially grateful. Saffron wanted me to give Kalki a shout out.

Saffron

The run extends from the coop which allows the ladies to roam free during the day. This also prevents them from enjoying our crops before we do. They have plenty of shade and places to scratch and peck.



Our yard may be small, but its packed full of goodies. Thanks to Shawn's green thumb, we will enjoy herbs, veggies and fruit.

Carrots
Blueberries, installed by eScape
Grapes, first yr to produce fruit. Planted 5 yrs ago.
Cilantro

Monday, October 24, 2011

Egg-citing news!


We are happy to report that the new chicks are finally contributing to the food supply. However,  tiny chickens make tiny eggs so right now 1 Ollie egg + 1 Ellie egg = 1 Saffron egg. Mei is still molting, so no blue eggs just yet. We hope the newbies will inspire her to start laying again.

Yay eggs!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Molting Mei

Our girl Mei hasn't been herself lately. We think she had sour crop a few weeks ago and with the introduction of the new chicks, she has been quite stressed out. She hasn't laid an egg in two weeks.

Thinking she might be egg bound, we bathed her in warm water and I did unspeakable things involving a latex glove and olive oil. We started to notice that she was losing some feathers. I began to panic.

Today, we came home to an entire backyard of feathers. We were relieved to discover that our girl is simply molting.

Thanks to Melissa B. and Backyard Farming for saving the day!

She looks a bit disheveled and has bare spots on her waddle and wings. Molting is stressful so we will need to supplement her food with some protein, like cottage cheese or yogurt.


The molting could last as long as 12 weeks and so could the lack of eggs. Good thing we have two other birds still producing.

Who knew chicken tending could be this exciting!