Saturday, April 28, 2012

Curious birds want to know...

Big doings for the Inman Chicks this weekend!  But that post will come (hopefully) tomorrow.

For now...we just want to pique your curiosity.

What's going on?  Why are we in this box?  What are you doing over there?

What are you looking at?  Why are you taking pictures?

What's that smell?  Is it us?  Hey--is this box moving?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Field Trip!

The bloggers may have gone quiet for a little while, but rest assured the Inman chicks have not!  They are busy as ever and there is much to report.  So here we go!

First...the chicken tractor.  It is a work in progress.  It began last weekend with a basic frame-up:

Jon and Dale also got the coop floor in place, and this weekend saw the addition of some walls and windows:

Meanwhile, the girls have been working hard to outgrow the brooder!  With the tractor still a work-in-progress, there is some debate about whether or not to stick it out another week in the basement or move to temporary quarters in the chicken coop in the barn across the street.  We're still debating.  We've made some improvements to the basement brooder.  Updates on that in the next post...

Even though the girls have not had an official change in living arrangements, they have still managed some excitement this weekend.  Today they went on a field trip!

 That's right!  Welcome, girls, to the front yard!  After just a short ride in the smart-pop box and a smooth landing in a make-shift play yard, the girls experienced grass beneath their feet and sun on their plumage for the first time ever!  Abby helped them de-box.

When they first found themselves on the grass in the sun, with the wind ruffling their feathers, they mostly just froze.  It was a big, wide, and strange world for the girls.  We just sat quietly and watched them settle in to their new experience.

We loved seeing who would be the bravest and who would follow the leader.

What's going on?
Where am I?
I think I need to lie down.
But after a few minutes, the girls began to tentatively explore their surroundings.  They had a pretty big area, but they mostly traveled in a pack, and they stayed pretty close to their box at first.  We also realized that they preferred to be near a person if possible, even if that person was on the other side of their fence.

There is something comforting and familiar about the feel of pine chips under foot.

"Let's go over here.  Everybody?  Stay close!"

Though new to their surroundings, the girls had no trouble whatsoever with the other critters around who were curious about them!

The ladies were very polite to Finn, but that's no surprise; he was a perfect gentleman.

Pretty soon they acted like they owned the place.

Look at them walk with confidence!

That last picture reminded me of something...

Look familiar?

The girls were happiest when Abby and I hung out with them in the pen.  I became a make-shift jungle gym.  Abby took some really excellent pictures, I'd say!

"Mommy, bend your head down lower."

Snuggle chicken.
This is a good perch.
But this is cooler.

 All in all, the chickens had a successful first outing.  We've read that they kind of need to be "hardened off" to the outdoors, like seedlings, so little trips like this are just the thing.  And what a pleasant way to spend a warm spring day in Maine!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Quick check-in...

Hi, Friends of the Inman Chicks!

We have been SOOOOOOO busy with life outside of chicken-raising, that we've had no time to post.

But rest assured, the chickens are still growing like crazy, and so is the chicken tractor (well, being built is probably more apt a term than growing).  So there will be updates soon on the following topics:
  • the growing girls--getting too big for the brooder
  • the girls' imminent move to the great outdoors
  • the chicken tractor progress
And on a sad note, we do have ourselves one sick chicken.  Over the last several days her legs have become very weak, and she is unable to walk.  There is no apparent injury, so we are presuming a disease of some sort (Jon has done some research).  It's sad times in the brooder, with our weak gal quarantined from the others (so they don't walk all over her), and we'll keep you posted, but her future does not look good.  The others seem to be ok, however, so we hope the rest of the flock has avoided whatever ails poor Liz. (She's one of the Barred Rocks.)

So all in all, the story of the chicks continues, and we'll do our best to get it posted here ASAP.  Thanks for checking in!

Sunday, April 1, 2012


There have been two small changes to the gals' home-quarters this week.

First, they are getting taller, so Jon had to move the watering device up 3 notches on the pegboard.

It may not look all that different to you, but 3 pegs up is a lot!  These girls are growing so fast!
Second, one day Jon came home to find the feeder knocked over.  He set it right, and before he could get turned around to come upstairs, down it went again.  The girls have taken to hopping/flying all about, and the feeder suffered for it.  So now...

The hanging feeder
This is much more effective and impossible to knock over.  It is also adjustable, so up it will go as the girls grow taller.

We were just discussing how amazing it is that they are only about four weeks old.  Based on how they look, it seems like they should be older than that!  We did another quick photo shoot.

Here's Farrah Fawcett.

Beak to beak!

Here's Betty.

Nice girl!

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