Our chicks didn’t cooperate with my camera today, but I am trying to bring my camera out with my required cup of tea so that I can catch them when they’re doing their thangs. Photos soon.
Everyone is well. Everyone is growing. They look like different birds every day because they’re growing so much and their feathers change a lot.
Since we separated the flock into two groups, we’ve been able to bring both groups outside to range wherever they wish a few times. The birds have kept to their two distinct sub-flocks while outside.
Today, though, I took the brooder chicks out to the new (not fully enclosed) chicken run so that they could interact with the other chicks in a bigger but more enclosed space. The brooder chicks enjoyed the dead leaves out there and then they walked up the ramp into the coop and stayed there. I looked in the window often and saw them drinking from the big fount and enjoying the light in there (warm and protected but more natural light in that space than they’ve experienced in the dark garage).
We watched the dynamics closely all day and decided it would create more commotion if we removed the 8 smaller chicks from the coop. We *want* them all to integrate so — if they are — then why not let them do it earlier than we had planned?
Tomorrow’s anxiety will be to go out there to say hello and look for picked feathers or red spots. Hopefully, we won’t find injuries because the birds get a lot of exercise and amusement now. Also, the coop is a larger space than the brooder was so, even with 16 chicks out there, everyone has a lot of room.
David has been working really hard on the coop and run. It looks great, and his plan to move another small fence and tie it into a utility shed (to give the shed more stability) solves my problem with the hodgepodge out there. The lines will be clean and will be tied together in a sensible way soon. The coop is part of that, and we even will have room to add a smaller coop to the other side of the run sometime when we need more things to make us crazy.
It’s pretty amazing when you fight with chaos long enough that some order begins to assert itself in a spacial way. I really didn’t know how to solve the visual and usage problems with this corner of our yard. Making the chicken run larger than required for 16 birds gave us a different sense of space out there and how to connect some corners so that structures fit together nicely. This sort of structural tidying up gives me a lot of peace, and I’m grateful to David for seeing beyond “what had to be done” to “how it could be done.”