Savvy Student Shopper’s Chicken Update

Bonnie eating watermelon - one of their favorite snacks!

Bonnie eating watermelon – one of their favorite snacks!

Hi guys! My chickens are doing very well and not much has changed, but I felt it was definitely time for an update. The babies are about 15 weeks old – YAY! I am ever so patiently waiting for eggs. Some chickens start laying around 16 weeks and some don’t lay until 26 weeks. I know we have at least a few more weeks to wait for fresh eggs, but I am so ready. I sort of feel like I’m just feeding them for no reason. I want a reward out of all this work! I keep checking their nesting boxes in case I get some sort of early surprise, but the only thing in there is chicken poop. Stick around with me so you can be the first to hear about my first egg. It’s like waiting for a baby to be born. I think my Rhode Island Reds will lay eggs before the Barred Rocks because their combs are redder and growing faster. Luna (who was the smallest) will probably be the last one to lay an egg. I guess she’ll always be the runt.

Welcome to the Hen House!

Welcome to the Hen House!

As much as I would love to have my chickens be 100% free range, they can’t be. My yard is not fenced in, we have woods on 2 sides of my yard, a road, and neighbors. In addition to the roaming away, the animals out in the woods pose a danger and I’m not taking that risk (especially after I’ve raised them for 14 weeks patiently waiting for eggs!). Whenever we are home, we try to let them roam as much as possible around the yard. We can usually let them out to play and check on them every 10-20 minutes, just to be sure we still have 4 chickens, they aren’t destroying mom’s flower bed, they aren’t in the neighbor’s yard, and that they aren’t lost in the woods. They absolutely love to run the yard. So many plants and bugs to eat and play with. Bonnie even ate a frog (or toad?) the other day! YAY for protein. Bonnie is seriously insane. She’s the biggest bully chicken I’ve ever met. She even took a chunk of feathers out of Biscuit and Ginger the other day. What the heck is wrong with her?

Nesting boxes

Nesting boxes

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Their outdoor living space

When the chickens aren’t roaming free, they are kept in the pen with fresh food (they love their table scraps, mostly “old” produce) and water. We also have dirt, straw, and some dug up plants in there to keep them happy. They also have access to their coop (which is made from our old play house). They are locked in the coop after dark for safety and they are let out every morning. My mom is a super duper help letting the chickens in and out. I mean, what mom wants to care for her daughter’s chickens? She’s just a great person. As I said before, need a pet sitter? Call savvy momma! In their coop they have a spot for roosting and nesting boxes. There are 4 nesting boxes, but they all prefer to sit in the same one at the same time. Chickens actually aren’t the smartest things on earth, in case you thought that.

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This is the second time Bonnie has caughter herself inside the animal trap. It’s so funny (and it doesn’t hurt her, just startles her) that I had to take a picture!

I realized I never posted good pictures of their coop/pen area, so there you go! I think they have a good life! We reused our old play house and my dog’s old pen so the cost of the Hen House was very inexpensive. We had to buy some hardware and my dad did some construction work (building nesting boxes, doors, windows, and attaching the pen to the house), but over all, I’m pleased! They prefer to roam all the time, but they are still happy and getting PLENTY of delicious and nutritious foods. Their eggs better be out of this world.

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