backyardchickenfail


Yes, I Still have Chickens, and They Still Suck

Oh my god it’s been so long. I know you must have such burning
questions, like is silver a safe investment in an uncertain economy? Will Chaz
Bono continue to reinforce my desire to never watch Dancing with the Stars? And
why in God’s name would I pay $60 for a crappy seat to sit in the Tampa sun for
3 hours paying $10 a beer to watch the Bucs lose to Detroit? Why???

And chickens. Won’t somebody think about the chickens? Sorry I
haven’t been writing. I’ve been doing other things, like visiting 9 MLB
ballparks, driving cross country, scuba diving, transporting lobsters across
state lines, mountain climbing, pretending to be a through hiker on the Appalachian
Trail, and vehemently arguing that John Rich is still a douche even if his
celebrity apprentice charity was St Jude’s Children hospital. Hopefully by this
time you’ve adjusted and found other ways to fill the time that used to be
spent reading this blog. Perhaps you’ve taken up knitting, interpretive
dancing, or knife throwing. In any case whatever you’ve been doing was most
likely far more interesting than the intricacies of chickenry.

But you should keep reading, if only to find out how they all die.
Yeah, sorry to give away the ending to the Titanic, but these chickens are all
going down!

After the death of Barbie #1 the chi in the chicken universe was
off. Herding three chickens back into their pen was easy as two will always
group together and the third will eventually run to catch up to them. Corral
the buddy birds into the cube and the dipshit bird still running around the
yard would quickly come squawking in to join them. With only two remaining, the
buddy system was abandoned and I now had two dipshit birds running around every
hen for herself style. In an effort to keep me from punting the poultry I
decided I needed a third chicken.

At the feed store I asked about mingling chickens of different
ages. They said it was a 50/50 chance that the other birds would accept the
smaller ones. To me this meant one thing: Chicken Fight Club!

“I want you to peck me as hard as you can.”

“Ba gawk?”

“I want you to peck me as hard as you can!”

Better actors than Keanu

I bought three Rhode Island Red chicks even though I only wanted
one. The theory was that they’d have safety in numbers vs. the older chicks and
that some of them were likely to bite it, leaving me with my desired total of
3. I set up the replacements in their brooder and set to work building outdoor
housing that I could actually get outdoors this time.

Store bought coops cost hundreds of dollars, and home made ones
seemed difficulty considering my carpentry dyslexia. Since most coops ended up
looking like a house, I instead bought a $30 plastic doghouse off of
craigslist. I abandoned the cube look and opted for a triangle design that I
was smart enough to build outside this time. The resulting ghetto coop was
something any chicken would be proud to crap on.

I want to poop on you

I was weary to let the chickens run free with rogue felines
around. Research into cat deterrents lead me to a coyote/fox urine crystals
thing that I bought at the hardware store. If you had no idea urine crystals
were available, you’re not the only one. Judging by online reviews the
effectiveness of piss pellets is questionable at best. I sprinkled my yard
creating a urinary force field and kept a watchful eye on the outdoor birds.

After an uneventful few weeks I added the replacements into the
coop and was disappointed that a feathered Tyler Durden didn’t emerge. The new
chicks mixed with the old and created one big stinky feathered family. All was
going well and the thoughts of lurking danger faded away like the memory of the
BP Oil spill (eat gulf seafood).

And then, all hell broke loose…

The next entry: The Chickpocalypse