Carrot Top appears to be taking an interest in Biology. Who says that chickens are of little brains?
It's been a busier summer than normal on the farm, which explains why blogging failed to happen. With the drought and all the projects, not to mention a well-deserved 2 + week vacation to California, Maggie's Farm was a hopping place. Now that the chickens are almost 4 months old, they are looking and acting like adults, even though they are not quite mature. The hens should start laying in October, when they are 6 months old. Out of 24 chicks, we have 10 roosters who are vying for the rule of the roost. With the exception of Elvis, Smoky and the other silkie roosters, the rest are sounding like teenage boys as they test out their crowing. The biggest male started crowing first, but little Sunshine has got the best sounding crow of the bunch. The others are sounding comically weak. It's a good thing that they have 6 acres to range over because that many males creates big competition for the hens.So why did the chickens cross the road? Perhaps a better question is, why didn't they? I live on 6 acres, bounded on two sides by road. All summer the chickens foraged for food right up to the very edge of my very quiet road, but never ventured out onto it. You might say the road itself stopped them, but that wouldn't explain why they happily walked across the driveway. I left on vacation in late July, and when I returned 2 weeks later, I discovered that they were now crossing the road to my neighbor's lawn. Larry (my neighbor) who marveled at how they never crossed the road said that as soon as I left on vacation, they started coming over. Thankfully, he thought that was neat, but it was concerning after I heard that they ventured even further down the road to another neighbor's property.
Well, I know that many of you might think I'm such a talented animal trainer, that my mere presence was enough to assure they would not cross, but overt training had nothing to do with it at all. Perhaps the fact that I was outside everyday working on the coop or picking raspberries for my client restaurants was enough to keep them nearby - especially since I was known to throw a few raspberries and Japanese beetles over the fence for them to fight over. But that would still not explain how they stopped at the edge of the road 100 feet away from where I worked. Needless to say, training of my own device has now ensued - in the form of bucket throwing! As I sit outside at my computer getting ready for school, I periodically take a break and go check whether they are too near the road. If so, a few buckets clatter down the road. It seems to be working. We'll see.
Darcy, on the other hand, is now so well trained not to bother the chickens, that she is absolutely no help in herding the chickens back home.
Follow the antics of the Science room chicks and their offspring as they hang out on Maggie's Farm. During the summer, we grow vegetables and raspberries that are sold to Madison's restaurants.