My chickens have a wide range of experience. Sometimes they are Outdoor Chickens and sometimes they are House Chickens.
The chickens recently spent two days in an indoor coop we built in the garage. You have to be careful where you put chickens. They don’t like change, but once they get used to it, they don’t want to leave. The only consistent thing about them is they like consistency.
I put them in there the night before our most recent snowstorm. Four chickens’ heat output is only the equivalent of a 40 watt lightbulb and even with the 20 chicken power of the heat lamp, I was afraid snow would melt and drip into the coop. I feared I would have chickensicles in the morning.
Lured by the mystery of an open door, they came in easily enough, but got very upset when I put them in the temporary coop. Feeling sorry for them, I opened the coop door to pet them and Blond Chicken wiggled her way out and hopped up on my shoulder. After a while, my housemate got this text…
“Help. Chicken in my hair.”
We untangled Blond Chicken and turned on their old brooder light. They were calm after that, with the exception of when I strung half a cabbage in the coop for them to play with. I went back into the garage when I heard distressed squawking and found them huddled on the opposite side. And there they stayed until I removed the intruder cabbage.
I left the light on to keep them calm and they stayed up all night. The day after the storm was warm enough, but only Redhead and Specklehead would come out. Actually, I made Specklehead go out so that Redhead would have company and stop making the Lost Chicken Sound.
I imagine the other two were too tired to come out, but nobody slept until I turned the light off the following night!
All four came into the house the next day and scattered into the living room and kitchen. We had quite a bit of clucking chaos for a few minutes, until they followed the hen scratch into the outdoors. And so ends the tale of the House Chickens, until the next storm.
Here are a couple pictures of our escapades…