our wonderful friends in canada refer to their chickens as “chux”. these are the same fabulous friend who gave us the phrase “big comfy dad”, and once agin we are borrowing their lexicon…
just to put it out there- we got them for eggs, and we have no intention of eating them… (the chickens, not our friends…)
ok, now that that issue is settled, here’s some ‘tales from the trenches day 1:
supper last night for chux: apple parts, cucumber peels, sweet potato peels, bread crumbs, and water.
breakfast: bread bits and popcorn (which they love). more water.
last night we lifted them all into the laying box, where we set up a warming light. i think they may have been up all night because they didn’t realize that it was dark outside, and they were kind of begging for starbucks this morning. they had little chicken dark circles under their eyes, so i moved the light into the main part of the coop so they will be able to tell day from night from now on- hopefully.
i had the kids carry them from the laying box to the main coop and put them on the chicken climbing ramp so they could figure out that they were supposed to walk up and down on it. since we can’t really tell them apart yet, it’s entirely possible that 2 of the chickens walked the plank 80 times and the others just laughed quietly to themselves about how stupid humans are.
one of the girls stubbornly stood on the top of the ramp- right at the door of the laying boxes. she wouldn’t go in and she wouldn’t go down. she just stood there making chicken noises to the chux and they would look up her every once in a while like, “what do you want us to do about it?” and then they would go back to pecking dirt. after a bit, i did a head count and realized that she was on the ground with her pals, because we had a full 14 chicken feet on the ground.
every once in a while, a chicken would randomly run across the floor and wave her wings around, like she was trying to fly. none of them really got off the ground, but i was getting lots of mommy joy imaging them being able to get away from predators when they are old enough to free range. and the rest of the chickens would all nod appreciatively. so i guess chicken sprints are pretty cool in chuxland.
they sort of stare at you sideways- which i guess makes sense since their eyes are kind of on the side of their head- and we would just check each other out. i was like, “hey! i have cake for you later!” and they were like, “cluck!” very touching.
i’m not sure if they are finding bugs in the dirt- or if they think there might be bugs in the dirt- but they seem very intent about pecking it. and then they slurp on a blade of grass and then spit it out. endearing, right? 😉
watching them is alot like watching junior high school kids at recess. if one of them will do something, the rest will follow. mostly they will stand around in a clump (to be fair, i don’t think junior high kids peck dirt though) and when certain birds make noise- they especially like crows- they all look up with yearning in their eyes. i’m not sure what the crow is saying, but they all seem on board. and then one will spot a piece of popcorn and go toward it and then we will just have a herd of chickens (yes, i know they are called a flock. but thanks) stampeding toward that one piece of popcorn even though there are 160 pieces in the coop.
then all back to the same clumping spot. i think that’s what the chicken dance should look like. instead of people walking around with their hands in their armpits (chux don’t do that by the way. their armpits remain pure and unhanded) they should all go to one spot and then just all hustle over to another spot and then hang out for a bit. it doesn’t choreograph as well to music, but it would definitely look more authentic.
my youngest daughter has laid claim to 2 chux and named them- adelia and lacey. my next son has one and he is debating between 2 names. the one on the plank today struck me as a ‘betty’ but i’m not sure why, and since i can’t really tell them apart, i don’t think it will stick. they have some distinguishing features, but i’m not sure how much they will change, so i don’t know about keeping their names straight right now. really, i can barely remember the names of my kids, and they don’t all have the same color feathers…
so, that’s about it on the burning chux news. i will try to keep you posted of events as they unfold. because i’m just that dedicated to up-to-date reporting.
did i mention i kind of like the chux and this is really fun????