Monday, 27 April 2015

Separation anxiety

Yesterday we ran a fence to divide one of the paddocks, leaving an entrance way so the chooks could still come and go freely.  We also set up an additional feeder.

Today we encouraged selected chickens to go into it, including Henry, and we closed the gap in an attempt to contain them.

We ended up with Norman, NotNorman and their sister Siouxsie.  Siouxsie, who sleeps i a separate coop to her sisters,  was pacing up and down outside the paddock where her two sisters were ensconced.  I ended up putting her in there too, I have no idea if that is a good thing.

Both Nora and Batty went in as well, instead of just one of them.

And two Welsh Black girls.  I picked the one with a saddle who is, or used to be, Henry's favourite.  And, after a bit of an inspection,  LightPink went in as well.   DarkPink is a bit pecky;  Gorgeous did a runny poo so I didn't think it was a good idea to put her in;  NoRing had gone broody; and Blue was quicker at getting out of my way than LightPink.

Henry was tricked into entering as well.   No one looked too bothered at first but, by the time we left,  the captives started to realise that they were captive.

I feel a little anxious.   I feel anxious that Norman and her sister Notnorman will have had their home invaded by bigger, meaner, Girls.   I feel anxious that Henry (the cockerel) will be fretting that he can't get to the rest of his harem;  I feel anxious that the Harem may get a bit narky without Henry to keep them in check; I feel anxious that removing some of the harem girls will have affected their position in the pecking order.

I also feel anxious because most girls use the Grey Coop to lay their eggs in. Even those that sleep elsewhere. I don't want to stress them.

The area has an old, roofless, coop on as well plus two separate shelters;  there is also room under the Grey Coop.     There are places for the smaller girls to get away from the bigger girls, and for them to hide from Henry if they need to (which I know defeats the object).

I know its for the best.  I know it's only for a few days.  But I don't like it.

I'm going to have to go down after dark to check they are all OK, and I will be surprised if  I find them all still where they are supposed to be.

Here's an old pic of Grey Coop.

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