Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Chicks are here!

This being our entry into the keeping of chickens, we are so excited to have the little peepers home. I now have a chicken-bathroom. We set up a large plastic tote with a 100 watt lightbulb for heat. I'm using puppy pads for now, as I read somewhere that newspaper is too slippery for them. When I use up the puppy pads, I'll switch to shavings, but for now, this is so easy to keep clean. I have a layer of newspaper in the bottom, with two pads on top, and I can just roll them up and replace them without taking all the chicks out. There are four Americaunas, three Rhode Island Reds, and three Barred Plymouth Rock. Despite an earlier decision not to name them, the three RI Reds are tentatively called Prudence, Patience and Hope. (How original--I wonder how many RI Reds in Rhode Island have these names?) And I really want to name the four Americaunas after my aunts..Margie, Hallie, Beverly, and Dot.
The three Barred Plymouth Rocks are a bit up in the air, but Max suggested either Chelsea, Mindy and Laurie, (his girl cousins) or Jeannie, Sheri, and Amy (his aunts). We have no idea if they would appreciate having chickens named after them or not.
Of course, we look upon it as a thing of honor. After all, these hens are going to be beautiful and dignified hens. Of course, we also have no idea yet if any one of these is going to turn out to be a rooster!

This was a great weekend for coop-building, and Michael has made huge progress in getting the chicks permanent home constructed. The four walls and floor went up, the roof is on, and the siding is mostly in place. It's only three sided, still, as the fourth wall is going to be two big doors that will enable us to open it up for easy cleaning. I will post the coop pictures soon.

I think today was nearly a perfect day--it started with apple pancakes, and included some time in the garden, time with my son, and a lovely short trail ride in the afternoon. Except for a nagging cough and doing two loads of laundry, it would have ranked as perfect.