More progress has been made on our chicken coop and garden.
John has been putting the touches only a finish carpenter can on the chicken coop. He has trimmed out the doors and windows to match the house (all 2 windows we have trimmed there…). He’s also finished the cupola for venting. It looks very nice, I think. But it’s taken a lot longer than necessary for chickens! He looks out the door and can enjoy it, though. If it looked like a thrown together mess, it would bother him a lot! Good thing I didn’t build it myself.
The coop is 8×12 with a 3.5×8 garden shed in the back and a 8.5×8 chicken section in the front. It still will gain a window in the left hand side and eventually some insulation and a little electric for a lights and a couple outlets.
To review: Our plan was to enclose a garden/chicken run. It’s split in half, so that each year the chickens get one side for a run and we get one side for a garden. We’ve pretty much completed the project. A little dirt to fill in the trench where the chicken wire runs into the ground and the “panel” that can be opened to let in a tractor to till each year needs to be attached. I let the chickens out in their side of the enclosure this morning to attack the weeds that have grown so well in there! There’s also a small run off of the coop that will be fully enclosed for a most always accessible but secure chicken run.
Their favorite weed seems to be milkweed. Weird. I though it was mildly poisonous, but they’ve been eating it with abandon and choosing it to eat first for the past several weeks and have been doing fine.
The first rooster (my “pink” chick) attempted his crowing yesterday morning. He’s the big one in the first picture. I am suspicious that several more are roosters- they have a deeper red tone to their combs and around their eyes. They seem to be larger as well, and one (“red” chick has small wattles now- need to check and see if that’s to Chantecler standards). I haven’t tried too hard to count how many MIGHT also be roosters, because it’s still hard for me to tell and I don’t want to know how many expensive chicken dinners I’ll be having yet. I am also pretty sure that two of the 4 ameraucanas are roosters- both with red feathers flecking their bodies. The ones that are clearest in the photos here I think are both female. The tiniest one I’ve named “Sparrow” as that what she reminds me of, both for her brownish coloring, her size, and her strong, constant chirping! No one else has official names yet. Just colors. I’m still amazed at the size differences from “Sparrow” to my “pink” rooster.