It seems that our “littles” have all gotten just a bit too big! We knew that was going to happen and Sue had been renovating the little chicken tractor to give the Banty babes a new place to grow up, which would allow the little layers to “go [outside] into the light, Carol Anne!” (If you don’t understand my obscure movie references, my apologies.)  Anyway~ We worked on getting things all set up for them yesterday, and last night we were able to move the banties out. 

IMG_2229We moved the tractor to the far side of the leaf pond, surrounded it on 3 sides with straw bales, as a type of insulation, put up feed back wind screen – don’t knock it, it works great – put in compressed straw for them to bed down in and added some food and water.  It’s actually quite cozy. After it was all set up, we placed the electric fence around it and Sue set about hooking up the energizer; pounding in the ground rod, hooking it up to the box, hooking the box up to the electricity, etc.  (Hey Ron! We did it and didn’t even blow anything up! – You’ll be so proud!) First test, once everything was plugged in and clamped on… 8,000 volts pulsing through that wire! Highest we’ve ever had!  Should keep things out pretty well, and the chickens in!

Last night was interesting, though.  Moving chickens does present some difficulties… you do it at night, so they are a bit calmer and don’t fuss as much, which means, it’s dark! So, I fell on my face a couple of times high stepping over the fences, because I’m just clumsy sometimes, like that. Finding the chickens you want is somewhat difficult because they’re mixed up, or hiding, or way high up in the rafters, so you’re waking everyone up and ruffling feathers – literally. We moved all those that we could reach easily, then I climbed up on the two-step to reach 5 that were roosting in the rafters, one kept scootching away out of reach and Sue had to climb into the top section of the brooder to stand up and reach her down! We ended up getting everyone to their appointed places, but boy – those little guys are screamers! It’s like they were getting strangled… but we were not doing that, I promise. No animals were harmed in the night move process. Last night and today they spent the day inside the tractor. They will spend tonight as well, and be let out into the enclosure tomorrow morning – much to their relief I’m sure. By waking up inside the tractor twice, they will know that this is where they should be roosting now; otherwise, they may try to get over to the coop tomorrow about sundown.  We’ll see how they like being able to be out in the leaves… and they’ll have about 3 times as much territory to cover, with 1/2 as many birds!  They should be happy little chickens over there.  We’ll keep you up to date on their progress as well as the progress of the little layers getting out of their sheltered little space and into the big wide world! So, more on Friday. Until then, as always~
Thanks for reading!

Today’s Weather: Quite mild actually. The wind has been calm and we’ve been somewhat overcast which has allowed for a nicely warm day. High today was 71° which is just about perfect! Right now, at 4:51 p.m., it is 67°! Overnight low may be 36°. Sundown will be around 5:25 and tomorrow’s sunrise is at 7:18. Oh! So this is really cool! For Christmas my parents gave us a full-on weather station!  So we can measure wind speed, relative humidity, actual rainfall, barometric pressure, all sorts of cool stuff. So, once we’ve got it figured out, we’ll really be able to give you some weather reports! Aren’t you so excited???  I am.

Egg Report: As you know, this is the slow time. Still today we received 1 duck egg – thank you very much – and 10 chicken eggs, though one was EATEN! Dang it!