We came back from a weekend of camping on Grand Mesa in the Western Slope, feeling like we'd been away for a week, instead of just a few days. We needed the time away.
Just before we left, the Brick found one of the oldest hens -- she'd apparently fallen from one of the high roosts, but gotten her leg stuck in the process. She was hanging upside-down, dead.
Knowing the great compassion of chickens, in general, I'd bet they looked casually on while she fluttered and squawked. They were probably hoping she'd get close enough for a bite. (Cannibals.) I hate knowing this -- but chickens are anything but kind and gentle. In fact, Daughter #1 calls them miniature dinosaur raptors -- and she's right.
|I resemble that remark!|
We'd lost another chicken to seeming old age a month before that. It's time to purge out the older chickies -- most of them aren't laying anymore, so their future as a chicken dinner is looming.
Neighbor Tim took care of the chickens while we were gone. We'd been wondering why we were suddenly getting so few eggs -- turns out the hens were hiding them underneath the remains of the Christmas tree! Tim found a nestful of 13 eggs... most were rotten. Then last night, the Brick found five more...one so bad that it exploded when we threw it away.
The garbage can smelled.
The kitchen smelled.
The HOUSE smelled.
It took a long time to clean everything up, and get rid of the stench.
*So we DID have eggs available, when we were scrimping and saving. But --
*We didn't find them in time. Ewwww.
|Yes, the chickens have nesting boxes...but do they use them...only when they feel like it|
At least the youngest chickens are starting to lay. But that wasn't the end to our odorous adventure. I'd left a few melons on the kitchen counter - they started to spoil, and dribbled juice all over the kitchen floor. The dogs capped it off, by having a Very Large Accident on the same floor his morning.
Which I get to scrub this afternoon.
Why did we come back home, again?