Thursday, July 29, 2010

Chicken tractor

Here is our new chicken "tractor" -- a portable enclosure that we can move to different spots around the yard. With this, they'll be able to get their fill of grass and bugs, and we'll still be able to enjoy the backyard. Yesterday was their first day in the tractor -- they spent about 5 hours out there and the rest of the day in their regular run. Penguin even laid an egg in the little nest box.

Richard built the tractor earlier this week when we were wanting a place to separate Vulture for a while to cure her of her early morning crowing. She had started at 7am Monday morning, so Tuesday she spent several hours away from the others and hasn't crowed since. They say that separating a chicken takes them down in the pecking order, which I think would be good since Vulture can be pretty mean.
Anyhow, I hope that a change of scenery will be good for all of them!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Crowing hen!

Without a rooster around, Vulture has taken up crowing. This video was taken this morning.

She has always been the top hen; she's a couple weeks older than the others, will sometimes peck on Penguin or Fancypants, and won't let me pet her like the other hens. I hear that it does happen occasionally where a hen will crow as part of the dominant role. In some cases however, crowing's a sign of a hormonal imbalance and a hen may even stop laying eggs. Hopefully she's just doing her thing and will continue laying eggs for us!