This is my blog about the day to day lives of my little flock of pet chickens. They're a happy little flock, although they're totally crackers! If you want a laugh, they'll gladly give you one.


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Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Snow defences

When it snowed last winter, the hen run seemed to develop drifts that we didn’t see in other parts of the garden.   We made frequent trips down there, just to check that everyone was OK.

It was just as well really, because on one trip we found Pom-Pom standing chest-deep in snow.  She had a puzzled look on her face.  Well, on the bottom half of her face anyway.  The top half is more or less covered by her headgear, so you can never be sure what expression that bit of her is wearing.

Anyway, she seemed uncertain how she had got there in the first place and evidently had no idea how to get out.   So we rescued her, checked her over, cuddled her to warm her up, then put her with the others.  They’d all had the sense to take shelter in the cage under the coop.

We didn’t want to risk something similar happening again, so this year we decided to put a temporary fence on each side of the cage gate and ran it along to the smoking shelter to form a corridor.   The chickens could then move between the cage and the shelter, but not get into the main run.   That way, nobody could find themselves drifting into a drift.  So to speak.

When the first snowflake appeared a few days ago, we hurried down to the hen run.   The chickens were way, way ahead of us; they’d gathered in the cage already.   Everyone, that is, except Mad Irene.

Snow?  What snow?   We were being too fussy by half.   She reckoned that while she could still dig the run up, all was well with the world.   She really fancied a worm or two and by golly she was going to find one.   So for the time being, we left Miss JCB 2011 excavating, while we got on and fixed the fence.

In the meantime, the snow was getting heavier.   Not that Irene noticed – her whole being was concentrated on finding those pesky worms.   We finished the job and popped Irene into the cage with the others (much to her irritation – she didn’t half mutter, no worms yet you see).

By the next day, Irene had changed her mind about snow.   Not only did she now notice it, no way was she going to set foot on it.   I tried enticing her across the 2 or 3 feet that separated the cage from the smoking shelter by putting a couple of treats at the shelter entrance.   Irene craned forward as far as she could, but would not set so much as a claw on the snow.   This was a great disappointment to Rebecca.   If Irene wasn’t going to make the journey, she could hardly be expected to, could she.   None of the others were remotely interested in leaving the cage area.

In the end, I gave in and put the treats in the cage, where they could all share them.   Then I trudged back through the Arctic waste that used to be my garden, and had a nice cup of tea.


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