Chick’s New Home

"We're going where?"

“We’re going where?”

I know, I know, another chicken post.  This should be the last one for awhile and I’ll get back to plants and chocolate desserts.  Today I moved the 6-week-old chicks from out of the bathtub to their new quarters.  They are living in a coop within the Fowl Fortress.

The coop had been occupied by Saki, a coturnix quail that ended up being male and thus having to be separate from the other two who were female.  Males are extremely aggressive and usually have a harem of at least six.  I don’t eat fertile eggs, nor want to hatch more quail so he was separate.  He also managed to injure his wing a month ago, then a week ago escape the Fowl Fortress and unfortunately get himself killed.  I miss his warbling, frantic call for his ladies.  The coop had also apparently been occupied by mice and rats, as I found out when I cleaned out the top nesting portion.  The rodents would only use it during the night and disappear like fairies by day, leaving lots of un-fairy-like poo all over the place.  I cleaned it out on top while the big girls helped kick out all the old nesting material from the inside.

Getting a little help from my friends (Madge) cleaning out the coop.

Getting a little help from my friends (Madge) cleaning out the coop.

The girls (and I certainly hope they are!) were so much larger than the last time I carried them outside to the porch that I could only fit three into the banker’s box and had to put another one upside down on top to keep them there for transportation down the hill.  I thought I’d put them into the top portion so they’d get familiar with it, then make their way down the ramp to the bottom.

Two banker's boxes with three huge chicks waiting to be shoved through that egg-collecting door.

Two banker’s boxes with three huge chicks waiting to be shoved through that egg-collecting door.

For over an hour all I heard was rustling, tiny little rushed footsteps and an occasional mini-squawk.  I tried to entice them down, but for a long time there were no takers.  Finally two came down, and one went up again, then another came down and went up again.  About an hour later I looked in and they were all down enjoying the afternoon sun and wondering where the plumbing was (they lived in a bathtub… get it??? 🙂  ).

Little peepers peeping.  That's Esther, and she didn't come down till last.

Little peepers peeping. That’s Esther, and she didn’t come down till last.

 

However after sundown when all the big girls went into their coop, the little girls crowded around in the corner looking bewildered.  I had to crawl in there, catch them and shove them back up the escape hole into the roosting area.

Kids.  Sigh.

Now I get to clean the bathroom and the entire mostly empty bedroom which is coated with a thin film of chick dust.

But not tonight.

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