Friday, October 22, 2010

Cooped up in Autumn

Lily and Dolly have stopped laying and have begun dropping their feathers everywhere they go. I believe this is called molting. Other than that, they are behaving normally.
They are tolerant of a little rain, but after a while they retreat under the deck, specifically under the deck under the eaves; they are no dummies.
I read that chickens will eat yogurt so I put out some that had gone past the expiration date; They devoured it.
They go to bed very early these days, even while the sun is still up.
Dolly still sleeps on the perch, while Lily prefers snuggling in the cedar chip bedding. I’m with Lily on this one.
Yesterday I opened the coop door well before sunup. The girls were both still in the sleeping quarters. Lily came flying down the ramp and outside the coop in under a second. I have no idea what she was thinking, but I would love to know.
Since I finished fencing the backyard, we let them run free all day. We know this means they will likely have a shorter life, but a better one too. I have to remind myself that they are not helpless and still have the self-protection desire that all living things are born with.
My spouse suggested I raise the coop off of the patio, in order to keep the straw drier. This may have been her best suggestion yet. I have done so, and I’m very pleased with the results.
Let’s see what a long NW winter brings to the coop.

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