For the last week our Cornish cross chicks have been getting loaded into a wheelbarrow and wheeled outside to spend the days outdoors. We've borrowed a dog pen from my brother, run chicken wire around the bottom and covered it with a tarp for shade and this is where the chicks spend the day lounging and eating and grazing and eating...and eating. These are meat chicks after all. Food is an obsession.
Today is the last day in the basement at night for at least a good portion of the little guys. Our brooding box is now officially too small for 25 three and a half week old chicks, the nights are warmer and many are almost fully feathered. It's a good thing too because the maintenance required to keep down the stink from these poop machines is something else. Anyhow, I thought I'd better snap a few pictures.
Here are almost half the little buggers after being wheeled out of the basement. After some initial clucking and cheeping they all seem to settle down and enjoy the ride.
Inevitably one malcontent tries to escape.
Harry, who is earning the reputation of being a chicken-whisperer in our house, is becoming the one that does most of the handling. The rest of us just want to load or unload as quickly as possible. Harry talks to them, waits for his moment and then carefully and tenderly lifts them. They, in turn, are calmer with him then the rest of us. Despite his expression (the sun was in his eyes), he enjoys being the one the chickens like most.
As we unloaded the second load of chicks today they began to realize they had wings. In just a few minutes they had all jumped ship onto the lawn.
The escape was not a worry. These guys just don't run and eventually they all headed right into the enclosure of their own accord. That's where their fellow chicks were, where the water was and most importantly to these little fatties, where the food was.
Not really. I went up to fill the water bucket for the chicks and handed Harry the camera. As I was turning on the tap I heard him giggling wildly. When I checked the pictures a few minutes ago I found this:
A lovely picture of my pregnant arse. Of MY end.