Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Why did the Chickens Cross the Road?

*Warning*  This post may contain severely anthropomorphic interpretations of chickens

We've encountered some uninvited guests lately.  At first I welcomed them, but that's before I learned what they were capable of.

 Yes, I was flattered when the chickens from across the road started coming over to my little yard to visit.  They just invited themselves into the coop, but I was okay with that.  The kids were excited about the "visitor chickens."

It was actually quite rude, now that I think of it.  They barged on in when my chickens weren't even home, and had the nerve to start scratching around, as chickens often do.

Eventually some of my chickens needed to utilize their coop, so they entered as well.  They were kind enough not to kick these visitors out, as some chickens would when presented with coop invaders.

One of my poor black hens was forced to lay an egg without any privacy at all. Perhaps I should put up some nesting box curtains, in case this happens in the future.  I mean, really.... she should have been more prepared, right?

  Maybe she should have laid her egg sooner in the day.  No, that's victim-blaming.  These chickens had no right to do what they did.

Still don't think they were over-stepping their farm boundaries?  Neither did I.  But now I see how they really were... their true colors may appear a rusty red, but their souls are black, I tell you.  I'm being overly dramatic, you say?  Think they're just a bunch of dumb chickens?  Looking back, I realize that they had an evil plan.  

 That harmless scratching at the ground, just doing what chickens do?  They had ulterior motives all along.  Our coop has a dirt floor.  I bet they found some good bugs in there.  Bugs that were rightfully MY chickens'.

See that lower nesting box there?  It has no straw left in it.  That is the ONLY nesting box my chickens like to use, and these rude visitor chickens kicked ALL the straw out of it, time and time again.

My children were forced to donate a plastic egg from their play kitchen, in order to place it in the upper nesting box, to convince our chickens that they should use it, instead of the straw-less lower nesting box.  My chickens were holding in their eggs, people!

I suppose these visitor chickens may not have recognized that a repurposed plant pot turned on its side is a perfectly acceptable nesting box.  Snobs.  They come from acres and acres of land, and have a beautifully crafted chicken coop complete with built- in nesting boxes that are accessible from the outside.  They must think they're better than my chickens.

Know what else they did?  They ate my chickens' layer pellets.  Lots of 'em.  And they didn't even have the common courtesy to lay me an egg.  Freeloaders!

Thankfully, our persistence in the face of adversity paid off.  My 4 year old daughter, Bayleigh, had a good feeling and decided to check the coop for eggs.  She came back to me, and excitedly reported that she saw this:

Poor thing lost some feathers from all the stress, but she saw the fake egg, and finally recognized the upper nesting box as an acceptable place to lay.

 Our plan worked!  A real egg, once again!

I haven't spotted any visitor chickens in the coop since the real egg was laid.  I see them foraging around the yard sometimes, and scratching around in the dirt road behind out house.  But they have backed off since they learned that they can deface our nesting box, and eat our chickens' food, but they can never break our spirit.  

Just kidding, I love seeing the neighbor's chickens.  The more the merrier.  It's a chicken party up in here.

1 comment: