Thursday, May 31, 2018

Moving the Baby Chicks into the Chicken Run - Part One

The time has finally come - we're getting our garage back!  The chicks are now five and six weeks old and, most importantly, fully feathered.  They've been without their heat lamp for a couple weeks now so they're ready to get the boot.....out to the chicken run.

Our chicken run is quite extensive with different areas that can be gated off as needed.  Jason put a lot of work into our run a couple years ago.  We decided that we would put the babies into the first area of the run.  They would have a lot more space and be able to see/hear our two big girls, Libby Mae and Bork, but they couldn't get to them (well, until they fly over the fence....)  So, just a few things needed to be done before we could get them completely situated.  First was to line the fence with chicken wire so they couldn't fit through it.

    

Jason knocked that out fairly quickly - he first lined up the top, stapling as he went, then went back to secure it in the middle and bottom.

    


All done!

    

Jason and I lugged the dog kennel with the chicks outside to the run and got them situated. They didn't know what to think; they stayed huddled in their kennel for awhile.


Jason headed out with some tools and plywood to secure the dog kennel and to make it a makeshift coop.  The noise scared some of them enough to come out.  Half in.....half out.


It didn't take terribly long for them to finally get brave and leave their safe place.  

    

In order to secure the kennel and make it predator proof, Jason secured plywood to the top and both sides.  Then, at night, after we lock the kennel door, we use bungee cords to keep the cover from an old playhouse taut and in place.  We also put a large stump in front as an extra precaution.

    


Would we use this as a permanent coop?  No, definitely not.  But, we are hoping to transition the chicks in with the two big girls this weekend. #fingerscrossed  Then, they'll be in the large coop at night.  I had a 'supervised visitation' today and let the two big girls into the run with the smaller ones.  Everything is fine until Bork feels that one of the smaller ones is going to take her food.  Then she pecks and scares the crap out of them.  I mean, I feel the same way sometimes....


Our plan is to sneak the chicks into the coop tomorrow (Friday) night while they're all sleepy and roosting.  That generally is the best way to introoduce new chickens.  Hopefully the transition is somewhat smooth.  They are getting more adventurous, but are still quite flighty and aren't too sure of us yet.  Oh, and I have I mentioned that one of our "pullets" is a rooster!?  He will most likely be going to a new home soon.  Of course it's one of the Easter Eggers that I wanted so badly....and also has the most beautiful coloring.  That's him on top of the kennel (where he should not be!)


Stay tuned to see how the full integration goes - I'll be back with an update soon!

~ Sara :)

2 comments:

  1. Bork - I'm definitely with ya! "Marie doesn't like to share food!" Ha! Looking good over there, Hayes Family!

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    1. Ha! I know...can't really blame her, but...can't they all just get along??? ;)

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