Tuesday, April 24, 2012

# 253 - Chick Quarters

After the "incident" with the chicks and Belle the Yorkie which resulted in a chick losing a beak, Deputy Dave decided it was time to build a proper chick cage.

It looks like our days as being chicken owners have settled into our bones. We've now had chickens for over a year and it appears that we LOVE HAVING CHICKENS!

However, since the two new chicks we've recently acquired must be separated (the injury to one chick causes the other to incessantly peck the flawed chick with vicious involuntary action) Deputy Dave knew the cage needed to have two separate holding zones.

We needed a chicken quarantine cage as well, for sick chickens and for other chickens that might be added to our current flock at a later date.

I loved his design so much that I can think of a few pieces of furniture for the house that would do well to incorporate this rustic design. Honey, we're not buying any more furniture...I love this country appeal! My next coffee table. sofa table or component stand will NOT come from a furniture production line, it will come from the Deputy's own hands.

The top part of the chick cage has a nice lid-top that is hinged and opens easily, with a chain in place to keep it open without falling backward all the way. It also now has locks on the front, so we can use it when traveling or to keep nimble raccoon fingers from opening it.

Yes, raccoons can figure out how to open just about anything.

Back into the bathroom the chicks went, but they have moved up in the world to enjoy a roomy, plush pad of their own.

Chicks are separated by wire, but close enough to no longer cry
at their separation.
Not to mention, the cedar smells great. Fresh cedar has such a clean, refreshing smell of outdoors. I love it. However, it will be nice to eventually get the cage moved outdoors so they can be acclimated to the outdoor environment and to the current flock, in a cage that offers a safer transition. 

I can only imagine all the good uses that we will be able to enjoy because of this new bit of construction that Deputy Dave felt compelled to build over the weekend.

Next on the construction list...our cabin in the country and perhaps some new furniture.


Rae said...

Deputy Dave sure does beautiful work!

Karen said...

Wow, Lana, you're sure having excitement and activity at your house! Sorry to hear about the chick's narrow escape from Belle's jaws. These poor chicks are having such a time of it in the short time they've been alive but they couldn't have gone to a better home than yours. Just look at the new accommodations your husband built, how wonderfully roomy and safe for them. I'm betting the de-beaked chick will pull through and I hope it's a hen. We raised five chicks last summer from fertilized eggs given to me by a friend...three of them were hens but two were roosters which ended up on the dinner table. Funny, I'm so sentimental about the 'Girls' but the roosters are another story, lol.

I'm going to have to build a chicken tractor and soon because the Girls are voracious diggers lately and I cannot put any mulch down in the flower beds without them scratching it all out. I'm thinking a portable pen to haul them to an enclosure I can move every week so they have new ground to go over FAR away from the flower beds. We've had hens for almost eight years now but I have some real 'diggers' in this new batch.

So good to visit with you, I think of you often!

LindaG said...

Deputy Dave did a great job!
I'm hoping to have my hubby at least build some book cases for the farm house.

Hope you're all doing well. I take it the chick is healing well?

RiverBend Farm said...

Ah-ha! Deputy Dave sounds like he's hooked too! Once you start with chickens, you cannot be separated. I've been too long without mine. I got my turkey poults last night and had to rush home from Bible Study this morning to check on my little brood. But your housing is MUCH nicer than my water trough...

John Gray said...

I am impressed!
my buff has just killed 4 of her newly hatched chicks by standing on the poor things
new mums eh?

Mike said...

Ah, cedar will weather well throughout the years, inside or out. Be sure and let Howdy season it. ;)

My chicks need yet, another pen. They've grown so much in 4 weeks. Had we not had this cold snap I'd already have them outside.

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

Deputy Dave really did do a great job!! I love chickens and wish I could have them, but since I can't, I live through people like you who do!! :-)

Anonymous said...

Chick dust -- move them outside as soon as you can or it will cover everything. If you can get the whole pen into the chicken house put it in there with them..they will get used to each other and be outside with their dust.:) It wouldn't matter so much , but it will make extra work for you and showing the house.
It is warm in TX isn't it?? They look to be growing rapidly.

Vickie said...

So, your little chickie with the injured beak is still alive? That's wonderful, Lana! I hope it makes it.

Deputy Dave did a great job on the little cage! You'll be so glad to have that to add to your chicken stuff. You never know when you need an extra cage! said...

Rae - Thank you, he really does. He's built some truly beautiful things over the years.

Karen - I guess that it is true, such events do push us toward positive changes, if now, we need to take stock of what is wrong! As for the chicks...we have no idea if they are cock-a-doodle-do's or not. I'm kind of hoping they are a pair. Since we've not raised a lot of chickens, I don't know about different breeds & their feathers are turning brown. Hmm? I do believe that roosters will end up on the same place once we move to our land, we'll keep a rooster or two for the new chicks to be born, but we can't have very many roosters. Once you've raised them, you understand where we're coming from. It would be great for you to have a mobile chicken tractor, something that you could safely drag with your real tractor, without hurting the chicken feet. Keeping your gardens free from digging chickens is definitely a chore! They can indeed be destructive. I think of you often as well, you are always such a deep inspiration to me!

Linda - I love bookcases! My family is a library kind of family! Always will be! The chick is healing nicely. The scab is gone. She's now back on the same side of the cage with her buddy, so they are happy! The beak looks much better, I think it's growing a bit.

Berte - I know we'll have to try turkey poults as well, as soon as we move to our acreage. As for chickens, yes, we are hooked for life!

John - you are a true farmer, so you see much more of all this than I get to see. I guess I better toughen up for those moments of having to remove the dead baby chicks. I'm trying to keep up with the bulldog (Mabel) and saying my prayers. I know she's your baby.

Mike - Howdy wants to "season" EVERYTHING. That's an issue that's gotten a bit better this past year, but he's a territorial booger. Isn't it amazing how raising chicks introduces us to the necessity of different cages/coops?

Kim at Golden Pines - I'm glad you read about our chickens; I did that for a LONG time before I got my first little flock. They are a lot of fun.

Anonymous - chick dust must be what my husband becomes violently allergic to as soon as the chicks hit about 3-4 weeks of age. I think we're about to move the entire cage outdoors, we have a plug on the back patio so the heat lamp can still be plugged in on chilly nights. We are letting them spend some time in their cage, next to grown chickens. Transitioning. But, thanks for letting me know about chick dust!!!

Vickie - The extra cage will definitely come in handy. I never would have imagined that this chick would have survived. I think we were so determined, but we're city folks. We don't have a farm full of animals just yet. But, I always hope to have time for an ailing baby creature.