Eggs have arrived, and double yolks are the norm…yum!

Double yolk, golden treasure!

Double yolk, golden treasure!

More often than not. Yay for us

More often than not. Yay for us

So far all is well. We had some early eggs on my birthday, July 27th. They taste so fresh but they were teeny at first. They are starting to get bigger but not all 5 are laying. Even so, we have 2-3 everyday. I hope by September that all 5 are contributing. The ladies were begging us to let them out of the pen to get to the green grass outside so we let them free range. I know they cover quite a bit of area, including a bit of our next door neighbor’s yard. I hope they aren’t doing anything except exploring. The neat thing is, no matter how far they go, they always are in the coop at sundown. We are now looking at a bigger shed-like coop, that we can walk in. What we have is merely adequate, with no room for more hens and I have to stoop down to fill food, water or clean. I am also sure my wife wants more next year!!
They love seeing her, because she usually has a treat. Corn on the cob is their favorite.

Little jewels, although recently some were huge.

Little jewels, although recently some were huge.

Now I'm free.....free...ranging......and the girls love it

Now I’m free…..free…ranging……and the girls love it

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Egg laying is on the agenda…and we lose a chicken.

Sadness...5 remain.

Sadness…5 remain.

She's the queen of the world....:)

She’s the queen of the world….:)


I know it has been a long time but we lost one of the Plymouth Barred Rocks. What bothers us is that we don’t know how it happened. We forgot to close the door on the coop one night, and the next day she was gone. No pile of feathers, no blood, no struggle just 5 left. We double checked the chain link fence and found one small area where if the chicken really wanted to squeeze out it possibly could have. I still think it was way too small but I closed off the hole and we have never forgot to shut the coop door again. In any case they are 15 weeks and we have shifted to egg layer feed and 10% scratch. Hopefully by the end of August we will see our first eggs. The 2 largest have well developed wattles and combs they are turning a deep red, which is the sign they will begin laying soon. I also included a few pictures of the flowers and garden as they have progressed.
New food storage

New food storage

Flowers really took off

Flowers really took off

Had our first tomato today, 2 zucchinis coming

Had our first tomato today, 2 zucchinis coming

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Getting back on topic somewhat, Chickens are 11 weeks old. 2 months to eggs!

Chickies happy to see me!

Chickies happy to see me!

Starting to get their combs

Starting to get their combs

The big girl Minerva

The big girl Minerva


I know the last post was weird and had nothing to do with chickens but we are back on track. They are getting big and developing their combs and wattles, starting to look like adult chickens. Their personalities are getting established as well. Theresa and I love to take treats out to the girls to surprise them and they come running full throttle. It is so comical. I will have to try and get a video embedded to show you. They are a lot more fun to raise than either my wife or myself anticipated as well as easy. Aside from the obvious of keeping them safe in a coop of some form, as well as warm when young, fed and watered. They are about the simplest animal we have taken care of. We have had fish, tropical, salt and brackish, cats, dogs, hamsters, guinea pigs, ferrets, cockatiels, African love birds, parakeets, rabbits and children. They are by far the easiest. They have not been very stinky like I was a bit worried about. As long as the wood chip fluff is 2 inches deep, the odor is minimal, and we change it out fairly regular. You can’t even tell until you get right up inside the coop. I know that a few of our friends are living vicariously through us to see how bad the hassle is. I have got to say, minimal hassle so far, and I’d do it again.
Flowers came out nice this year

Flowers came out nice this year


Smallest garden ever

Smallest garden ever


View from our pool to backyard

View from our pool to backyard


Orange dragonfly landed on me while taking pictures

Orange dragonfly landed on me while taking pictures


Just a few pictures from around our house.

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Calvin and Hobbes Creator Bill Watterson Returns

Just saw this and had to reblog…not much to do with chickens but who cares it’s Calvin and Hobbs cartoonist back in the scene!

Pearls Before Swine

Bill Watterson is the Bigfoot of cartooning.

He is legendary. He is reclusive. And like Bigfoot, there is really only one photo of him in existence. 

Few in the cartooning world have ever spoken to him. Even fewer have ever met him.

In fact, legend has it that when Steven Spielberg called to see if he wanted to make a movie, Bill wouldn’t even take the call.

So it was with little hope of success that I set out to try and meet him last April.

I was traveling through Cleveland on a book tour, and I knew that he lived somewhere in the area. I also knew that he was working with Washington Post cartoonist Nick Galifianakis on a book about Cul de Sac cartoonist Richard Thompson’s art.

So I took a shot and wrote to Nick. And Nick in turn wrote to Watterson.

And the meeting…

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Beauty is in the eye of the beholder they say but I’m sorry we got some pretty ladies….:-)

They've grown quite a bit as you can see.

They’ve grown quite a bit as you can see.

My wife holding one of our red sex links.

My wife holding one of our red sex links.


Our chickens are doing very well. They are starting to develop wattles and combs. They run to come see us especially if we have treats like rice or noodles or veggies left over from dinner. They love the treats but they spend a lot of time stealing food out the mouth of the closest bird despite the fact there is plenty for all laying right at their feet. In 2 months we will shift to egg laying feed and by September the first of the eggs will be arriving. So for now we are just letting them get full size so they can free range the whole yard. We are a still a bit leery as we have cats that are inside outside and don’t have a good feel for whether that may be a bad idea. We can’t have a rooster on account of local town laws. If any reader has a comment, feel free to post, any good advice will be appropriately vetted and implemented or ignored. Lol… In the mean time, I am truly enjoying the girls. They make us laugh everyday!
Plymouth barred rock and Red Sex link.

Plymouth barred rock and Red Sex link.

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Hail to the chickens?! Sudden thunderstorm came up….

Look how quickly the ground was covered!

Look how quickly the ground was covered!

Hail everywhereLooks like snow

We heard the thunder first and saw some lightening. I decided to gather the girls and get them in the coop. Within a few minutes the hail was pounding the house, the cars, the new flowers we planted. The hail was the size of blue berries or small grapes but was so forceful. Luckily the hail was not quite big enough to damage the cars but many of the flowers were de-petalled. The chickens and the rest of our pets are fine but it was pretty violent. Now the world is steaming because it’s too warm for ice to hang around long. I tell, ya, raising chicks is full of fun and excitement.

View of our driveway and the steam rising from the hail.

View of our driveway and the steam rising from the hail.

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Expanded the condo!

 A bit more room for the ladies

A bit more room for the ladies


As you can see the chickens are just about fully feathered and quite a bit bigger. They are still going to get bigger so we expanded their coop to give them sufficient room. They are supposed to have 1-2 square foot apiece and we were a bit shy of that. The addition connects at the bottom and almost as soon as we cut the hole, the girls were exploring the new area. Once they are fully grown, we are going to let them range the big pen and then the yard. But for now Theresa and I wanted them to have more area to move around in.
Just climbing out of the roost

Just climbing out of the roost

From the back

From the back

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