About 8-9 weeks ago I started my chicken journey. I bought my house about 3 miles from town this past October. Before I even closed I was postive I wanted to have some peepers. My partner wanted to wait until we had some time to build a proper coop and run. We're heading out to Burning Man the end of August and have been super busy preparing so I had it set in my mind that we couldn't get them until after that. However, the day before he was heading out on a weeklong fishing trip he called me up and said, "let's get those peepers!". I was estatic!! We went down the road where he had seen a sign for someone selling some hens and we picked out two silver laced wyandottes. I tried my best to pick the ones with the smallest combs, the least red looking in hopes they were girls. I have a green house attached to my living room and kept them in a small pet carrier while I was gone and let them peep around the greenhouse while I was there. They were the cutest sweetest little things: Roustabout and Ballyhoo! At about six weeks they had just gotten too big and too messy to be in the greenhouse! They were stinkin that place up! My dad brought up a 4x10 chain link dog kennel as well as an extremely large dog carrier. My partner and I sat it up in the back left hand corner of the yard. I placed the dog carrier up on blocks and created a little ramp for them to go in and out and even got roosts put up in and out of the carrier. They seemed very happy in their temporary home. However, not very many days later I realized that something was scratching up under then kennel and getting their food. A couple of mornings their food bowl was even OUTSIDE of the run! I tried to remedy it putting rocks around the border and such but apparently didn't do a good enough job. My partner moved in that weekend, including his cat Liam and while letting Liam out for the first time and introducing him to the chickens we ran into chicken parts everywhere Poor little Ballyhoo (who I did suspect to possibly be a roo) had not had a pretty night. I was devestated and little roustabout seemed devestated too - trilling and cooing and not eating very well. I searched craiglist for someone near by who had some hens about the same size/age. Sunday night I found a place about an hour from me and went to meet her and her 300 hens! She had amazing set up and was the sweetest lady. She helped me pick out the Roustabouts new companion, a red comet sweetie now named Sanguine or Gwinnie for short. Her and Roustabout made immediate friends. They had a full day to themselves to get to know one another. When I came home last night I wanted to set up some nesting boxes and make the place a bit homier. As I got in the run, Gwinnie found a hole in the fencing and I found myself inside the run- and her outside! And that's how the chicken chase started! I've decided that Gwinnie is much more intelligent that Roustabout! Rou just couldn't figure out how to get out and chirped and bok bok bocked at Gwinnie to come back but she wasn't haven't any of it. I chase around the entire yard, through the garden, up on the porch, in the shed, back down to the coop, in lots of brush. Just imagine me in these lime green turtle covered pajama capri pants, a turquoise sports bra running through the yard arms outstreched yelling at that poor scared chick to come back! hehehe I must have been a sight! I wonder if the neighbors saw!!? All three of the cats were out and I was a little worried about them chasing her but they seemed to keep a safe distance. She got right next to Liam and he didn't seem to hardly even notice. But then Lola saw her- and decided it was on. Lola started chasing Gwinnie. I was yelling at Lola and running at her. Gwinnie ran the other direction and I kept running after Lola to keep her away. I finally got Lola in the house and then couldn't find or hear Gwinnie anywhere. I thought she was in the neigbhors yard or something. I searched and searched for aboyt half an hour. I was extremely puzzled. Finally- I found her huddled in a big dense spider web behind the shed. I had to crawl back in the foot wide space through yucky spider webs and cradle her out- but I coudn't quite grab her and she ran off again. At this point my partner called and I told him to pick up a net from the store. Gwinnie had made it up in a tree above the coop. Roustabout was still in the coop as high as she good calling to Gwinnie. Gwinnie stayed there for about half an hour until my partner FINALLY got there with a net and we had a much smaller version of my previous chase (with a net) and caught her a few moments laters. Whew! Gwinnie is used to free ranging all of the time and I'm sure just had the time of her life but I was soooo worried about her. What if Lola had gotten her . Both hens are safely tucked back in the coop this morning and I'm hoping that it's that way when I get home this afternoon!
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