Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Hens Leave the House

Now that our girls are almost full grown, we decided it was time to let them out of the confines of their Eglu and run. I was very excited, as I had visions of them happily chasing each other around the yard, flapping their wings in freedom, and otherwise acting like 7 year olds at recess. However, chickens are, well, chicken. The first couple days they would hesitantly walked outside the run door, looked around, and run back inside. Lottie (black) and Wanda (yellow) circled the coop once and then laid down next to it. Maude refused to leave at all the second day. 
This was frustrating. I was offering these chickens the world of my backyard - bugs! dirt! grass! - and all they wanted was the comfort of their run. They've slowly come around, but unfortunately the place they honed in on was the pumpkin patch. We let them have a few days of freedom in the patch, but they were destroying the leaves, so we are going to fence in the patch to keep them out. The fence has been bought and will hopefully get put up today, so until then the hens are in lockdown. 

The funniest thing the "ladies" do is take a dirt bath. They dig a hole in the soft dirt of the pumpkin patch, roll themselves around until they are completely covered in dirt, and then just wallow there like pigs in mud.  Here is a video of Wanda and Maude demonstrating this wacky behavior:

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