Monday, April 5, 2010

A chicken love story

chickchickchick

So here's how the story goes...

Over the past couple years, I've given my husband a hard time about the different types of animals I want out here as a pet. They've ranged from horses, to cows, to bunnies, to goats, to chickens, to ducks.

Most of all.... ducks.

For the record, I really, really want a duck.

Tanner and I are forever walking around saying "Oh, we're getting a duck!" For some odd reason, this doesn't amuse Gene nearly as much as it does Tanner and me.

He's totally not sold on the duck concept.
Yet.

So Tanner has really gotten into the idea of having chickens, and even designed a chicken coop in some CAD program that he found online. He also said the other day "I read in this chicken forum....."
Wha?

So I had a conversation with Gene, that he might be disinterested, and I'm somewhat luke warm, but Tanner is excited so let's just do it. I mean, worse case scenerio, we end up with a big storage shed and a dog run?

Saturday, we just happen to stop in at Orscheln's to gawk at chickens and kiss all the ducks. (Ok that was just me), and I notice that because it's the day before Easter, every chicken and duck is on sale 1/2 price!

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I have 18 chickens in my living room in a giant tub right now.

And no coop, no run, no nesting boxes, no roost, no NOTHING. But I have chickens! I got 12 Plymoth Barred Rock and 6 Rhode Island Reds. 2 of those reds might be a rooster. That's what the chicken whisperer, Jason, said anyway.


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And Tanner seems excited and hangs out by the temporary coop, which they have already gotten bigger in the 2 days we've had them. There's a monster chick in there that looks like he's eating all the other chickens she's so fat (might be a he).


Jingles on the other hand:

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He is not amused.



So we had to hit the ground running on building this coop. I mean, chickens seem to be like teenage boys when it comes to the growth spurt thing, they eat a lot, and they grow fast. That 2'x3' tub is only going to last a week tops.


We have an old cement pad, where a garage used to set long before we moved here. There was a fire and the garage was lost. It's in crappy condition if you can imagine, and right now it's just been a place to put our construction waste.

The choice seemed obvious, so it will be the location of our coop, with the run going out into the back into the grass. Gene is convinced that we will soon be letting them run free range. I however, am kinda iffy living on a busy road where some ppl might think running over a stupid chicken would be 'cool'.

Anyway, so saturday the plan was to dig the holes for the posts for the run, put up one side (which will be a regular fence - so ppl don't have to look at my chicken coop, and they'll be out of the wind), and then go pick up a load of lumber for the coop.

Gene has a co-worker that has a TON of 2x6's (long story), that he has been hoarding, and he said we could have what we wanted. Srsly, there's enough to build a huge 14 car garage.

Mmmm... garage.
Screw chocolate or a paris vacation. My ultimate dream fantasy is a garage.

He goes to pick up the lumber and his co-worker says "screw it! We'll build it right here!". And they did! All the framing is done, and we just have to assemble, put on the roof, windows, doors, sheathing, paint. - so.... a LOT.

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Tanner and I tag teamed post holes while Gene was gone, and without the posts (he had them we didn't accomplish much else.

Tanner doesn't like digging holes.

I don't either.

We also discovered that if we want to dig a well, we could, by hand. And it would only need to be about 6 feet deep. Dude it's wet out here!

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Soon Gene pulls up with the nearly fully assembled sides, and we all heaved them onto the cement pad.

Then we all laid down and panted and said "stupid chickens" and they said *peeepeeepeeepeeepeeep* for the next 96 hours.





I will keep you updated on the chicken coop progress. I have to, I have no real life to report anyway! :p

Scuse me, I need to go, my living room stinks and I need to clean some chicken poo.

And so it begins.

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