Saturday, September 10, 2016

Temporary housing

I'm hoping to have our 2 week old chickens in their new a-frame, after the weekend. The brooder is really only suitable for sleeping in at night. It's too low, and they don't have the room to exercise their growing wings. So I had to rig up something temporary, which they could occupy during the day.

 Using what we had ~ a 2nd hand, playhouse

It's an ugly junk make-over, where I turned Peter's plastic play house and slide, into a chicken nursery. It should do them for a few days. They're only in it, when I'm outside working on their other home. Which seems to be most of the time lately. It's not entirely secure, which is why it needs monitoring.

Some protection

A thin sheet sits over it during the day, to deter areal predators. We get crows, kookaburras, hawks and all manner of butcher birds. Then when it rained recently, I put a tarpaulin over it. So it's pretty much, water tight.

Little peepers

It's not a huge amount of extra floor space, but the main thing is the height advantage. They madly exercise their little wings, as the itchiness of their feathers grow in. Peter loves, that his play house is now a chick nursery.

That's #8 chick, with their head slightly tilted~
with #20, or racing stripe, next to them

We have quite an array of different colours in this batch. I'm assuming the darker ones, were possibly from the lone Australorp hen, I had in with the Isa Browns. Of course, there are the genes of the rooster too, who was a bit of a mixed bag himself. We were told Isa Brown, cross Leghorn.

Sadly, we're now down to 14 chicks though. Mumble was doing so well, and then one evening when I went to check the brooder, I found him with his head in the water. He couldn't get up. The lump on his head had grown, which can sometimes happen with crooked neck, if they receive a bump to it. With lots of rambunctious siblings, that was always going to be a possibility.

It was a choice between ending their suffering quickly, or watching them slowly starve, for not being able to consume what we put out. That's why his beak was in the water. He wanted to drink, but couldn't work his head or body to do so. Chickens need to be able to tilt their heads back, to run the water down their neck.

We were thankful to have Mumble for that week, or so. A reminder that life isn't always perfect, but it's still precious.   


  1. Sorry you lost Mumble, Chris. I know how you feel.

  2. We always remember the special ones, don't we, Nanna Chel. :)


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