Grackle & Sun

Chicken Fever

So, um… this might have happened today:

Two new chicks. What can I say? I had to stop for more chick feed, and there they were. Calling to me. Peep, peep, peep. My mom wanted leghorns, but they didn’t have any. In fact, they were almost out of chicks entirely (but they had a ton of ducklings and goslings—don’t even get me started on ducklings and goslings—you cannot even begin to know the strength of my restraint from that absolute cuteness), but they did have some Delawares. And wouldn’t you know it, but Delawares are on my list of chickens that I’d like to raise (along with Australorps, Buckeyes, Dominiques, Javas, and Sussex). How perfect!

They are only about 2.5 weeks old, but the guy who heads up the poultry section assured me that there would be no problem introducing the new chicks with the older Buff Orpingtons, and indeed, they get along just fine.  These two are actually very self-assured, curious, and not intimidated by the bigger chicks at all (not that the other chicks are that much bigger). And they are so pretty.

But you know what I’ve learned about chicks? They are super messy. Like, messy on steroids. I cleaned out their brooder pen and put everything in fresh—new bedding, new water, new food, new dish of dirt, and then I put all the chicks in. 5 minutes later (and not a minute more), their pen looked like this. So imagine what it looks like now. For realz.

Yes, that is a Buff Orpington on top of the feed jar.

Speaking of cleaning and chickens. I spring cleaned the big chicken house yesterday and today:

All the old bedding (and chicken poo) went out into the compost pile (which is now mighty), everything was scrubbed down with vinegar/water with a little dash of lemon essential oil, and then aired out.  Two words to make your chicken house cleaning way better: hinged roost. Brilliant idea (thanks, dad!) Lift that baby up, lock it in place, and the worst part of the coop is completely accessible and clean in no time. Today, I sprinkled diatomaceous earth on the floor and in the nesting boxes, spread fresh new bedding, and added some lovely rosemary and lavendar to the nesting boxes.  Because apparently chickens love herbs. And that makes me love them even more.

I think the chickens approve of their clean house.

Actually, it was like an episode of Clean House, lol. I locked the chickens out in their yard while I worked, and so the whole deal was a surprise for them. It was fun watching them during the ‘great reveal’. They were all about exploring their new digs.

This was a big job. I don’t know that I would have been so excited about it, except that by chance I found a website 3 days ago that totally fired me up, and I feel the need to tell the whole world about my favoritest new chicken blog ever in the history of the history: Fresh Eggs Daily. Lisa has created such a lovely and wonderful site that teaches how to raise chickens and ducks naturally. I love, love, love this line-up of posts on what she calls ‘The Basics‘, which was the fuel and inspiration behind my chicken house clean-up supplies—the DE, and the herbs, as well as the minced garlic, dirt for grit, probiotics, and raw apple cider vinegar in the water. So much good information. I’m implementing all the things and already see happier chicks and chickens. In addition to the chicken and duck guides, Lisa writes about other favoritest topics: gardening and herbalism. I’m looking forward to reading her new book, Fresh Eggs Daily.

Chickens FTW!



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11 thoughts on “Chicken Fever

  1. Great job on the chicken house!! Beautiful. Should make for some very happy chickens.

  2. :D
    You do have it bad (in a great way!).
    Chickens FTW indeed!

  3. Dre, you have a new follower – though it won’t show up in your count. My Vash just sat on my lap and read all of your posts about chickens, oooohing and ahhhing over the baby chicks, agreeing with everything you wrote and laughing at the milkbone boxes and the dog crate. Vash is my chicken whisperer. They will walk into his lap and snuggle with him. He has loved them since he was a baby. He has a chicken bath towel, a chicken bank and was Chicken Elmo for Halloween as a little dude. He went to Farm Camp over the summer and spent his days with the chickens. We go to the County Fair to look at and admire the Chickens (I want a Polish Chicken!!). His favorites are Australorps – they make good pets. So I promised him that I would show him all of your posts about the chickens so he can watch them grow. We love you Dre. :)

    • Aw, you guys are so sweet! I think it’s awesome that Vash is a chicken whisperer (high five!). Sometimes you find an animal that you connect with, and that is so important. Many want the connection to be with an animal that’s bold or strong like a tiger or wolf or hawk, but they overlook the amazing qualities and lessons learned from less flashy animals. Although, the more I hang out with chickens, the more I see that they are all personality. Tell Vash that Australorps are on my wish list! And I’ll keep posting updates on my little flock. Love you guys back. :)

  4. That is one cozy little house they have. What lucky little birds to have come home with you!

  5. Such cute chicks and such a great looking coop!

  6. Congratulations! Chickens are one of the forms happiness takes in life in my opinion! They’re lucky to have a chook mummy like you.

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