Monday, March 11, 2013

How The Heck are Those Hens Getting Out!!!

Hello from Windmill Farm.  If you have been following our little farm adventures, you will know that Frank built this beautiful new chicken house for my 24 heritage breed hens.  Although Frank is known to say to many how he hates chickens, he did build the new hen house with all their needs in mind.     A few days ago, we went to Tractor Supply to pick up some metal T posts, they are called, to finish up the chicken fencing.  The new fencing has been up but Frank wanted to get the metal posts to add between the wood peeler posts to give it more strength.  We had talked at length when designing the hen house and yard about height of fencing, with the final decision of going 7' tall but burying 1' in the ground so no critters could dig under.  The hens have finally adjusted to having more inside space and huge outside yard space.
   About 4 days ago, the one hen I call Squirrley, was outside the fence when the rest were inside.  She has always been a little odd.  If all the hens wanted to go left, she would go right; if all the hens wanted to go inside, she wanted to stay outside; and if I opened the door into the hen house, she would fly out the door before I could catch her.  So when I saw her outside, I figured she got past me when I fed them in the early morning.  That night, I had to let all of them out before dark, so they ALL, including Squirrley would go back into their safe and protected new house.
  About 2 days ago, while I was working in the back field, I saw two hens on the outside of their yard, in the back field without any gates open.  One was Squirrley and the other was the Marin hen.  Had to do the routine again that night to make sure they all got into their house safe, counted them 1-24, all there.
  Yesterday, I again was out in the back field and I see 4 hens scratching in my newly planted vegetable patch outside their pen, in the back field.  How the heck are they getting out of our full proof fencing!!!  I told Frank there must be a hole in the fence.  He said I didn't count right and they had been out all night.  I walked around the whole fenced in yard, up high and low to see if there was any way they could slip through the fencing.  I looked all around the large gate in the back and the man gate, but the wire was very low and tight.  All I could say is that the chickens are Haudini chickens!!!
  Today, Frank and I were planted potatoes, in the back again.  I heard this loud rattle of the back gate and there was Squirrley, on top of the 6' gate and fence along with her other hen friends, and then they flew off the gate and preceeded to start scratching in my newly planted beds.  So that was how they were getting out, I have never had any problem with them ever flying out, but I guess Squirrley showed some of her friends how to do it and since she got to get out, they wanted to go too.
  Tonight, I just came from their hen house with my scissors. Squirrley and her 3 other friends all got their wings clipped.  Tomorrow should be interesting to see how they attempt to jump the gate.  If it happens any more to any of the other ladies, they all are going to get their wings clipped one, by one.

1 comment:

Dirt Lover said...

Ha! You showed them! Let's hope, anyway. I was going to order some Marins from McMurray, but couldn't get them with my other birds, so opted for the ever popular Astralorps and Auracanas. And this year will be doing the frankenbird crosses. 50 of those, to share with friends. Will be interesting to see how your Houdini Hens make out!