18 July 2011

13 Week Chickens!

18 July 2011

The chickens are 13 weeks old now! There is a noticeable difference between the larger chicks, Cochins and Bitey – and the smaller Silkies and Houdans.

Alejandra is stylish as ever! Notice Kelly Taylor peeking over her shoulder?

Amelia is going to be renamed Needy if she keeps it up! She is very attention hungry. I have been taking a little stool into the run to get them used to me. She and Bitey are always jumping onto my legs.

Here is Bitey, also on my lap!

The Silkies are getting wider…but not taller. I think their feathers are filling in!

Black & White chicken is still nameless. She drew blood yesterday with a couple of well placed pecks to my leg. Bitey 2 might be in order.

Macie Sands and the other cochins are huge!

I am calling both of the Black and White Cochins Vi until I can tell them apart!

Petra – you can almost see one eye! 

A group shot in the run.

The top roost bar is where 7 out of 12 chicks sleep. The rest sleep in a pile on the floor. I am hoping that they will learn to use the lower roost bar eventually!

Here are some closeups of the chicks feathers. They have the most gorgeous patterns!

Harvest – Took our eyes off it for 4 days!

13 July 2011

Chickens at 11 Weeks!

5 July 2011

The chicks got some new bedding in the run this weekend. Dead leaves! Who knew dead leaves could be so exciting. There are still changes happening to their faces and feathers…they are not full grown yet!

While not my most photogenic chick, Sparrow wanted to be the center of attention during the photo shoot this week!

Alejandra was a little shy this week.

The newly named Violet Zindars, she goes by Vi, shows off her gorgeous coloring.

This chicken is currently called Bitey. You can guess why. As a redhead, Peggy as been suggested but this chicken is a little aggressive!

Kelly Taylor and Donna Martin are really filling in!

Amelia and the Black & White chicken immediately perch when I stand on that side.

Double Cochins! The brown cochin may be named after Aarons’ Great-Grandmother…Macie Sands!

Petra has been very friendly…and lovely!

The group! Happy chicks!

The Harvest Continues!

27 June 2011

This is our first year for carrots. Did you know carrots have a distinct carrot smell? You don’t get that from store bought carrots! The longest one is about 5 inches.

Cucumbers, eggplant and peppers in this basket. I only planted the asian style eggplant this year. They are great for stir-fry.

The deer ate the tops off of all the green beans…but it hasn’t really slowed them down! This is probably 2 gallons of green beans.

Malabar spinach came up all over the garden as volunteers this year. We didn’t plant a single seed and should have enough for a whole summer of salads! There is also basil , Black Cherry Tomatoes and our first regular tomato in this bowl. 

Not pictured from yesterdays harvest – Red and gold potatotes, beets, one red onion and 3 grubs. (Gave the grubs to the chickens!) 

Coop – 98% Complete

21 June 2011

We still have a few small items to finish up but the coop is pretty much done.

We are thinking about painting some of the trim white to match the house.

7ft Tomato Cages

20 June 2011

I added another half of a cage to the top of my current tomato cages.  They are made from concrete reinforcing wire from home depot.  To keep them from tipping over each cage is now attached to a 7 ft pole driven into the ground.  Might not be great for gardeners under 6ft but I don’t have the problem :)

These Black Cherry Tomatoes are Over 8ft at This Point.

9 Week Chickens!

20 June 2011

The chickens are 9 weeks old now! They live outside full time, put themselves to bed around 8 and get up every morning before I do! They seem very happy in their coop. Lots of logs to jump on, perches to fly to, food to eat and friends to chase! I painted most of the coop yesterday – pictures to follow soon. I am still naming them all – let me know if anything jumps out at you.

The coop is built…just waiting for some finishing touches!

 The have switched over to their Big Girl feeders. I remember when the chick feeders were too big!

The door between the coop and the run is a good hang out spot for the blonde chick. She can only see things below her. This week I have been calling her Petra. Buffy didn’t stick.

Amelia will sit on my lap whenever possible.

The redheaded chick is trying to be my friend but she is a little more skittish. She is also developing quite a face!

Sparrow is growing her earlobes and comb.

Kelly Taylor is getting really puffy. I think she will be fully bearded and her fluffy bunny tail is awesome!

Donna Martin caught a leaf! So proud.

One of the furfeet is bigger than the other and one honks like a goose! Don’t they have lovely plummage? I was thinking, once I can tell them apart, that one might be named Zindars. Also, it turns out these two can fly! They were the among the first to sleep on the high perch!

The partridge Cochins are growing rapidly. They love to flap and chase but don’t really fly.

Black and White chicken is almost as friendly as Amelia now.

Alejandra is very petite. Big personality…little body! While I was painting yesterday she kept sticking her head around the corner and supervising.

That is their 9 week progress. Next week they switch to adult food and can start having treats! I will be getting scratch – which is dried grains - and giving them things from the garden. A master gardener friend of Aaron’s said my chickens were very tame and friendly!  

7 Week Chickens!

9 June 2011

I am a few days late with this post – new computer lacked the right editing software. I did take these on Sunday. The chicks are now as tall as their water bottle! It is shocking how fast they grow! The moved out to the coop full time this week. They haven’t figured out how to go in at night but they are out in the morning! I am adding pine straw and leaves to the run every few days so they have fresh stuff to dig in. The all like to dig in the dirt and take dust baths. There is a little more work to be done on the coop but it is probably 90% complete!

Here they are out and about in the run of the coop. There are lots of things to jump on, fly to and kick around!

They do go down for nap time when it gets hot. They like to sleep in a pile and these two have been cuddly!

This is my best friend chicken. Isn’t she stunning? I have been trying to call her Amelia this week to see if she likes it. She is a good flyer (Earhart) and I could also call her Amelia Bedelia.

Sparrow is very evasive. She runs fast, ducks under the others and in generally very zippy!

Redhead here has the largest comb and earlobes so far. Her dark feathers have started to take on a green tinge, like a Mallard Duck! Oooh – maybe her name is Darkwing Duck?

I think this is Kelly Taylor’s best picture yet!

The other furfoot took a lousy pic this week so this one will stand in for both.

Donna Martin seems to be filling out a little on her head fur!

She is very Apricot on her back now. I think she is a Buff Houdan.

This chicken is starting to get pretty friendly too. She lets me pet her and pick her up.

These two chicks are BIG! I can’t tell them apart yet. They are probably 2 weeks from being the size of a basketball.

Does she look like an Amelia to you?

Alejandra is just gorgeous. I have been teaching the other Pollos spanish so they can all communicate.

I don’t know if I will be able to get individual photos anymore since they don’t come in at night! We’ll see.

Harvest Dinner!

2 June 2011

From this….

To This!

Red Potatoes for the potato salad, beets, carrots, peppers and raspberries for the green salad!

Coop Update

31 May 2011

Chickens at 6 Weeks!

30 May 2011

The chickens are now 6 weeks old! They have spent the last 3 days in the coop enclosure. As soon as the coop building is done they will be ready to go outside! The enclosure is very, very secure. Half inch hardware cloth (wire mesh) from the top to 18″ into the ground. The roof is complete, the door has a raccoon proof latch and the seams are woven shut with wire. The chickens seem very happy to have more space, lots of dirt to kick and bugs to chase! They get really nervous when the sun goes down and start chirping angrily. I have to round them up and put them to bed fast.

Poor thing can’t really see much! Her hairdo is in the way! It does make her the easiest to catch when they go in at night!

6 Week Progress Pictures

Sparrow is really quick on her feet and in the air!

More and more silver on the heads of the furfeet. I think they will be all black and white when they are done.

The partridge Cochins are the biggest so far. They have heft when I pick them up.

Alejandra is very friendly now. She will let me pick her up and she’ll settle on my hand. I think she likes to be higher up so she can see more. Hairdo issue.

I think this chick will be a Black-Laced something. She is also very large!

She is getting a rose colored spot on her beak. Just learned to fly up to the perch this week.

The other Partridge Cochin.

Kelly Taylor is the shoutiest of the bunch. She chirps the loudest when the sun goes down. Drama Queen.

They know when they are being photographed!

She really does not respond to Mimi. I had some inspiration with Proud Mary. It’s fun to sing!

Donna Martin Chicken is getting quite a bit bigger now. Her headfeathers are filling in.

The Golden Campine is my very best chicken. She approaches me and likes to be pet. She is softer than a cat! She needs a great name! I think she is an olympian.

Next week they should be fully outside!

The Fruits of Our Labor…

30 May 2011

…are Actual Fruit!

2 quarts of Raspberries – 5 pounds of Red Bliss Potatoes – 2 Gold Beets – The last Sugar Snap Peas

Week 5 Chickens!

23 May 2011

Here they are! Week 5! They are still changing dramatically every day! They can really fly. When I went to get them out of the outside play area last night two if them were standing outside the fence looking in! The coop is still in progress. Just 1-3 weeks until they go outside for good!

Naming is coming along. This gorgeous bird in Alejandra. She has become a really good flyer this week and is always sitting on top of the pen when I leave the top off. 

I am leaning towards Donna Martin and Kelly Taylor for the Silkies. They are very fancy, a little high strung and a little bit dramatic.  For those of you not familiar, those were characters on 90210.

These next two are my Golden Girls. They both have gorgeous golden heads and hang out together because they are the best flyers. The one I have been calling little darth is officially a Golden Campine (her breed). I am thinking about Rue McClanahan and Blanch Deveroux for their names. However, they might be Olympic Golden Girls rather than TV Golden Girls. I haven’t decided.

The fur feet that used to look like chipmunks are almost completely black & white now. In the last few days their whole heads changed from brown to white! No names yet.

The fur feet that have been dark brown all along now have some red stripes. I think they are Partridge Cochins (breed). No names yet.

Black & White chick is stunning! I think she needs a movie star name.

Clearly the blonde chick is a showstopper. Look at that crazy hairdo! It gets bigger and bigger and bigger. I think she is a Buff Houdan. I have been calling her Autie Mimi but it doesn’t seem to be the right name. Maybe she’ll grow into it.

Sparrow is a lovely shade of silver. She is very tall and a good flyer. If her head keeps changing color she won’t look like a sparrow anymore and I might have to change her name.

There you go! 12 happy chickens!


Week 4 Chickens – Awkward Teenage Phase?

16 May 2011

The chickens are 4 weeks old now! They are progressing at different speeds feather-wise but they are all bigger, faster and most can fly! Just 2-4 weeks until they go outside to the real coop. Hopefully, 2-4 weeks until it is finished!

I am getting a lot more pictures like this one as they can now jump off my picture time perch! The Silkies are growing…probably my smallest right now. All of the fur footed ones that have been slower to get their feathers are starting to fill out. Some of them look really strange!

Sparrow is turning a lovely silver as her feathers come in. I think She might be a Silver Dorking. Actual breed name, really!

Little Darth, Sparrow and the Red head are my three best flyers. If I leave the top of the pen they will be perched ont he edge when I get back.

This is a lousy picture of the blonde. She was really fast! Mimi is the front runner for her name.




16 May 2011

Someone is tired of digging... After the wire mesh is installed concrete will be poured in the trench to keep out predators.

Garden Update

10 May 2011

We eat our first potatoes this week along with some sugar snap peas

We also eat some fresh broccoli too. Can't wait for sweet corn.

The tomatoes are looking good. We planted 6 more this week.

The raspberries are starting to ripen.

Chickens at Week 3!

9 May 2011

The chickens are 3 weeks old…Only 3 weeks old! They look so much bigger than they did. It is amazing to compare the 1 week pics and the 3 week pics! I did get 2 new chickens this week. I picked up 2 3 week old Silkie chicks locally. I am hoping they are girls. If you haven’t seen a Silkie chick before you should Google it. They are ridiculous! You may have noticed the nicknames I am using to title the pictures. That is really just to tell them apart. Once they are fully feathered I will give them full, proper names. If anything springs to mind let me know!

The New Girls – White and Brown Silkies

The white one is very shy.


Little Sparrow has very long wings!

Little Darth is getting Copper feathers towards her head!

Look at those Fur Feet!

New black eyebrows for my top hat girl!

Blondie is going through an awkward phase. Hopefully she’ll turn out beautiful!

She flies!

Chicken Videos

9 May 2011

Here are two videos I took of the chickens this weekend. They spent a few hours in the yard Sunday, playing in the outdoor pen and then had to sleep off the excitement in the indoor pen! Oh, and I got two new chickens last week – Silkies! Progress pictures coming soon. It is amazing how fast they grow!

2 Week Old Chickens!

3 May 2011

The chickens spent most of the day Sunday on a field trip to the front yard! We (Aaron) set up a temporary pen of chicken wire and fence posts and then we (Jesse) supervised them playing for a few hours. They learned to fly from the top of the log ramp! They dug in the dirt! They kicked pine needles! One of them caught a fly!

I took the progress pictures at the end of the day and it was hard! They were so brave from learning to fly they kept jumping off the perch I had set up! Most of the chicks have wings feathers, tail feathers and some are starting to grow little combs above their beaks. Some of their beaks have turned darker or gotten a dark stripe. Their feet are different too! The blonde chick has the most feathers and they are starting to fill in on her back and chest. Just 4 weeks until they go out to the still unfinished coop!

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