As of a few months ago, I was very skeptical about all of those folks who say, “Chickens are easy!”
But, I must say, with 3 full months of chicken-experience behind us, “Chickens are easy!”
Of course, Ryan has done most of the hard work (building their first home as well as their enclosed stall in the barn, toting them from our house out to their permanent home, lugging home the big bags of chicken feed, lovingly taking special care of one failing rooster, etc.), but I’m fairly certain that he would agree! Our 17 feathered friends are a delight.
In March, they arrived in a small cardboard box, just days after hatching:
We introduced them to a larger cardboard box in our basement with a chick water bottle, a feed dispenser, and a heat lamp.
One month later, Ryan enclosed a stall in the barn, and we moved them out to their permanent home (necessary features: food, water, a roost, a ramp, and a few nesting boxes):
One month after that, we began opening up their own private entrance every morning so they could free-range. Here’s the big moment when the first chicken emerged into the light of day!
And now, we simply open the door in the morning, check their food and water, and close the door at night! They stay close to the barn, and seem to have a great sense for regulating their exposure to wet or hot weather. A month from now, we’ll be looking for our first egg!