OK, so everywhere I read says that chickens are little omnivore eating machines. I’ve been testing that theory out lately by giving them table scraps and leftovers in the refrigerators. However, I don’t give them anything, I do have a few rules.
– No food that has spoiled
– No sweets or desserts
– No spicy foods
– Limit the processes foods
– No uncooked hard beans
– No potatoes with green spots
After a couple of weeks here’s my list of likes/dislikes. I will continue to update as the hens try more.
watermelon (but not the rind)
leaves from my pepper plants
herbs (basil, parsley)
ham (boar’s head deli meat)
I recently added a perch to the run. There is always at least one hen on top of the perch at all times. They are having such enjoyment with the perch that I am going to add a second.
Meet Chicken Little.
Last but not least is Chicken Little. She was the smallest of the four but her small stature did not stop her from establishing herself at the top of the pecking order. Chicken Little is clearly in charge of this flock (and with an enforcer like Elsa, Chicken Little will likely remain in charge).
The past couple of days we have had our first two predators come around and check out the coop.
I was looking out a window during the middle of the day to check on the flock. I noticed they were running back-and-forth, from one end of the run to the other. Then I saw movement on the back side of the run. There was a neighborhood cat that was circling the coop. Not sure he could get in anywhere or do any harm but he was giving the hens a bit of a scare (but not scared enough to run up the ramp into the coop). I quickly went outside and the cat went running.
Then tonite I had gone out to check on the chickens about an hour before dark. The chickens were active and doing alot of scratching so I decided to let them be and I would check back at dark to make sure they made their way into the coop for the night. When I went back out around dark I could see no chickens in the run but heard chirping from inside the coop. When I walk close a giant owl silently flew off from the coop. The owl landed about 20 feet away on the branch of a tree. I could clearly see that it was a Great Horned Owl. When I carefully opened the coop, the chickens were clearly excited and huddled up together. I imagine the owl came quite close to them perhaps even landing on the ground to check them out.
Meet Elsa (can you guess what movie?).
She’s our white hen. Like Omelette, not quite sure what breed (we will have to wait until she grows up).
Elsa is the largest of the four hens (she may be a week older than the other three). She’s not afraid to use her size and push the other hens around, but she’s not the boss. She’s more like the enforcer.