Gone all lazy blog.

Yeah…I’ve generally been a less-good poster, but I’ve gotten even more less-good, recently. That’s because I’ve fallen into the easy trap of blogging on Facebook rather than here. So…this is a great place for the full early episodes, but if you want to see my more recent updates, please search for Accidental Chicken on Facebook!

Yeah, a post without a picture.

So, it started raining very hard. One chicken always runs into the coop and the other tends to drench herself in the rain. Being a concerned chicken caretaker, wanted to make sure less-smart chicken was protected. Well, she had actually gone into the coop. I approached, she ran out into the driving rain. I tried to nab her and throw her back in, and she skillfully eluded me. Then a great big thunder clap and she darted right back into shelter. She knew what she was doing, I got all wet. But chickens are safe and sound.

Oh…have I been neglectful? Yeah. But here’s a super-long post to make up for it.

Okay, so, as I predicted in the beginning, I figured I’d be really gung-ho at updating for a while then get really bad at updating. This has, unsurprisingly, come true. I tried to start an instagram thingy, but I didn’t succeed. So, now I’ll try to update with several things that have happened over the past month…oh, jeez…the last two months:

IMG_9370.jpgOoh…a little pond with a little island for us to destroy and/or poop on!

Since hubby built that, the chickens have successfully dumped more dirt in the little pond than would ever be expected. But, we’ve also grown some giant goldfish. Hope to get pics.

Not chicken related, but, damn, that’s a cute doggie (Shout out to my parents’ Westie Bridget):IMG_9394.jpg

 

Pics of alternate chicken diapers that were also unsuccessful:5F0A30E3-693A-4C69-87F5-61DF49F9A979.jpg

 

Learning that the chickens prefer roosting to coop (surprisingly, this is a night picture, but our garage security light was that bright):IMG_9401.jpg

 

What the…what the…what the hell is that?? Some kind of gross shell-less alien egg bits! Ewwwwwwww. So, there it is.IMG_9411.jpgOh, and, apparently it’s Mardi Gras! (per the napkin)

 

Oh, yeah…brought Comet inside for the first time. She seemed like she needed a bath. IMG_9413.jpg

She was not as cool with the cats as Buffy was. Ah…Buffy…I miss you. I hope your caretakers are doing right by you.IMG_9420.jpg

 

 

Awww…look…Jeff has made a chicken planter!IMG_9467.jpg

 

Chicken vs Shrimp:IMG_9485.jpgChicken wins. Of course.

 

What the heck, why do you get the shrimp?IMG_9486.jpg

 

Night Laser Chickens!IMG_9490.jpg

 

Earlier promised pics of pond goldfish that started out half-pinky sized and are now koi-ish:IMG_9511.jpg

 

MMMM…dirt bath!IMG_9526.jpg

 

Double dirt bath!IMG_9535.jpg

 

AND, In Conclusion: The Awesome Tiki Chickens!!!!IMG_9550.jpg

Semi break in the action

So many things have been going on from a yard and chicken perspective, that I certainly owe a post.

First…the semi break…not a full break, but interesting sorta broken chicken egg. Comet went through a phase of weird eggs.

The first one is a soft shell. She squirted it out but there wasn’t enough calcium in the shell to keep it intact, so we had weird rubbery shell and yolk and white pooped out into the yard. The second two pics are one egg that came out scratched and crackly. The pic just shows the unsmooth edge of where I figure it was a little soft coming out of the cloaca..seems like there must be some twisting/corkscrewing as it comes out. The last one was just so long and skinny compared with the rest of the eggs.

For the first month or so, I was in awe of how uniform all of the eggs came out. Now I’m in awe of their diversity.

Yeah…about those chicken diapers.

Well, I have a little hope of getting the chickens to wear adorable washable diapers. If they will, they could come into the house from time to time, especially when it’s stormy outside. But that little hope is shrinking.

It took some work, looking for the appropriate chicken diaper. 1) the backyard has a bit of a tiki feel, so I’d love a Polynesian pattern. 2) needs to be big enough. I’m still not knowledgeable enough to know if my chickens are medium or big, though I’m guessing from the size of their eggs that they are on the heftier side. But when I ordered the diapers, I was looking at a smaller chicken.

I managed to get it on her. Just barely.

But, clearly, not the approved solution: https://youtu.be/6dxeYg8buTk

So, no chickens in the house. Their poopage is too intense. Maybe I’ll try a bigger diaper, but, just like putting my cats on leashes, I’m fairly sure this isn’t gonna work out.

 

 

Big City Chickens, Big City Problems.

The chickens have been settled into their new run. They should be safe from hawks and maybe even coyotes (maybe/maybe not…but there has been one spotted near the neighborhood recently), but those aren’t City problems. Those are surprising incursions of rural world invading Chicago. Kinda like chickens, I suppose.

Ah, but real city issues. The chickens are getting along well with the sparrows, robins, and the squirrels. Apparently stray cats visit the yard frequently, and that hasn’t caused a problem. Haven’t seen raccoons yet, but it’s just a matter of time. Surprised bunnies haven’t been exploring the area–they are legion in Chicago.

And real city problems:

IMG_9184

Look closely…just above the cob…oh, those beady little eyes. We had been curious as to where the two corncobs had gone that had been put out for the chickens. One ended up on a fence then in the alley behind the house. Only explanation had to be a squirrel. But where did the other go.

Sadly, Jeff had noticed a certain increased amount of scurrying in the backyard. If you live off an alley in Chicago, there will be the occasional mouse or rat. Or maybe more than ‘the occasional’.

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Having read the book “Rats“, I knew that they scurried along walls. And that’s right where we put the run…along a wall. Rodents figured it out pretty quickly. (I also learned from “Rats” that Chicago is one of the few cities with enough bunnies to make them kind of creepy. En masse, I have learned that bunnies, raccoons, deer, and ladybugs can all be pretty scary.)

Then came all of the ethical stuff…Why do I care if there are rats there? Is there a way to move them vs eliminate them (yeah…dead style)? Why are rats ickier than squirrels or rabbits? And I actually haven’t answered all of these questions for myself yet. I know that rats don’t carry as many diseases as we’re afraid of. I might be a little worried that they’ll bite the chickens or take the eggs. Why am I less bothered by the cute little tiny mousies than the big-ol’ fat rats with snake-like tails?

Decisions to be made. (Okay…I’ll admit it…have tried to trap a bit, but they just lick the peanut butter and scarfed down the roast beef bait.)