New House.

See how they’ve grown:

which meant that their indoor cage was getting too small for them – and incredibly smelly despite being cleaned every day.

After another attempt at moving them back indoors I cheated and called on one of the boys from next door but one to climb into the pen and hand them to me so that I could take them indoors – one at a time.

After watching this long drawn out ‘game’,  Bear decided it was time to assemble the new house.

“It will only take me half an hour.” he said.

So on Friday morning he started and swore at me if I tried to help.

“I don’t tell you how to do knitting, sewing or cooking,” he spluttered.

However, progress was slow so I couldn’t resist finding out what was happening.

He had put one bolt in without attaching the side and back of the henhouse  and was scratching his head as to why the other end wouldn’t marry up.

He was about to drill another hole when I noticed the problem and pointed it out.  So, I could be useful after all and it was a bit quicker with two.

All the same, it was late afternoon before the chicks were installed in the pen which was now adjoining their new home.

I thought they would be curious and want to explore  it but they were extremely suspicious. This didn’t bode well for ‘bedtime’.

Bear, on the other hand, fell asleep, exhausted from his carpentry,

but there were still a few screws missing – such as the ones holding the roof on!

At ten o’clock when I went to put the big hens to bed they were nicely ‘tucked in’   their house but the ‘babies’ were showing no signs of  going into their  bedroom. I tried tempting them with food and even put a couple I managed to catch into the nest box, deliberately leaving the doors open so that they could see it wasn’t trap like the cat basket.

No, they began to make their little chirpings  which, to me, sound as though they are stressed. Eventually it seemed as though they were trying to escape. Some flew up to the roof of the pen, others tried pecking at the wire netting while a couple even looked as though they were attempting to  tunnel themselves out underneath the henhouse.

Fifteen minutes later they were huddled in a corner of the pen near the door – looking and sounding most upset.  From this position I was able to catch them easily. In fact I felt they were waiting in hopes of being  carried back to the conservatory.

I closed the henhouse doors and gently popped them into the nesting box, one by one.

The chirping gradually subsided  and they settled down.

This morning they seemed none the worse for their traumatic house move and jumped out into the sunshine as soon as I opened the door.

Fingers crossed they will go indoors more willingly tonight.

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14 Responses to “New House.”

  1. Vagabonde Says:

    What an adventure your little chicks have. It looks like a neat little chicken house though, they should like that.

    • sablonneuse Says:

      They are beginning to get used to going in and out now but there are still three who need to be put to bed at night.

  2. Little old me Says:

    ahhh how sweet, it must have felt really scary to them

    • sablonneuse Says:

      Yes, it’s strange how they are quite feisty as a rule but got very nervous about going to bed.

  3. Keith Says:

    You got it wrong. You should put Bear in the cage and let the chickens have the run of the house!

  4. Z Says:

    Well, at least Bear didn’t have to be asked to assemble the house – which looks fabulous. We just catch our chickens and put them where we want them – they soon adjust. Usually, we go out after dark and pick them up as they sleep – some of them don’t even wake up and just settle on the new perch again!

    That’s the way to get a broody hen to accept a newly-hatched chick that isn’t hers, too. Pop it under her during the night and the next morning she thinks she has cleverly hatched it out herself.

    • sablonneuse Says:

      Goodness, Z, I would have trouble finding chickens in the dark. The big ones put themselves to bed around 10 (when it’s still light here). Not sure I’d want to stay up another hour or so now that I have to get up early to let them out and feed them every morning.

  5. Patricia D Mackay Says:

    Whatever did you do with yourself before the chickens? They could be the glue that will bind you and Bear closer together. In any case you seem to be enjoying them and the eggs will be a bonus.

    • sablonneuse Says:

      Bringing Bear and me closer together is a nice thought, Pat, but it’s not very likely considering that he doesn’t like birds (except on is plate) and he has probably spent more time complaining and swearing than helping. On the other hand, he enjoys having ‘something to do’ and putting the henhouses and runs together was just up his street.

  6. Wendy Says:

    I haven’t visited you for a long time, so I was amazed at the sudden amount of chicken posts.

    I though you were only interested in Bears and Whales!

    • sablonneuse Says:

      Hi Wendy, nice to ‘see’ you. The chickens are a choice. The Bear and Whale I’ve just had to learn to live with!

  7. guyana gyal Says:

    I never knew chicken had so much personality! Look at them, dodging and hiding. I wonder what they’re saying about “those people” – you, Bear, Whale and everybody else.

    Bear building the chicken house was a really nice surprise.

    • sablonneuse Says:

      They are certainly developing their own characters, G-G but their main interest is food. They expect something to eat whenever I approach and fall over each other to get to the dish.
      Bear has always fancied himself as a handyman but I’d describe him more as a Heath Robinson so my heart sinks whenever he picks up a screwdriver!
      I can remember the days when I ‘helped’ him with repairing and tuning small church organs. He used lots of drawing pins and elastic bands.

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