We have our yard chickens. Actually, we've had them for a little over a week now, but I'm a lazy updater.
We spent a couple of days getting chewed on by mosquitos for several hours at a time so that we could finish it "enough" to get our girls. Put a dog house in the pen up on some cinder blocks (until we can build a coop), and filled it with shredded paper. Purchased a waterer from our local feed store (I know, we could have built one, we decided to face the fact we don't get to these projects quickly and just spend the money), picked up layer feed and grit while we were there...and then drove over to pick up our ladies from the ever patient laughingturtle.
They spent about a week just eating and scratching about, starting to grow back feathers and settle in after being so overcrowded (we never though they would be with LT this long....totally our fault too.)
People kept asking me if they gave us eggs, and I kept answering "not yet, but I don't care". I really didn't either. I am in love with the noises they make, and the sight of them laying on their side or cleaning themselves. I adore it when they fight over their favorite scraps, darting in to steal from the higher ranked chicken while she isn't looking. Or cluck and dart about to see if each handful of layer feed I toss might, just maybe, have been something more wonderful than the last handful I threw 2 seconds ago. Watching them scratch about in the dirt, bright little eyes alert for any possible tidbit, is endlessly fascinating to me. And I laugh out loud when they taste something messy and wipe their beaks clean in the pine needles that the tree has dropped all over their pen.
Today, however, we collected our very first yard egg!
I'm so very proud, you would think *I* had laid it.
It's a small one, so I'm guessing one of the little girls (known in my head as "mini-hens"), but either way, I'm one proud chicken mama right now.
When it stops raining, I'll get you a pic of the girls (there are 3 red hens named Nugget, 2 Bantams named Giblet, and one speckled lady named Spot....yes, we *are* smarty-pants).
It only took them 24 hours to establish a pecking order, and now Top Chicken meets me at the gate each day, ready to see what table scraps I am bringing out. Second Chicken is never far behind.
I'm in love with my girls. I could sit out there for hours with them, if only I had a stool to sit on (still working on that). I think they lay calm as well as eggs.
Speaking of: take a look!
Oh, and that's paint on my workin' shirt, not poo. (though chicken poo is definitely part of my world now) ;)