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.
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.
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??? 🙂 ).
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.
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.