I had a nightmare last night. Thelma had a huge, swollen foot that made her hobble horribly. Waking up at 5 am is not my idea of rising time. So, I lay there worrying for two more hours as I tried to sleep. When I finally gave up, got up, and uncovered their cage by the back door, I had to examine Thelma. She did not like me picking her up and turning her sideways. But, her foot is fine. Thinking I might have gotten the name wrong, I examined Louise and Fancy, also. Night claimed by hens.
After I set the pen right outside the door with the lid propped open, I left the backdoor open for a bit. I heard the three jumps accompanied by lots of beating wings, rattling of cage, and three landing thumps. They usually hang out on the porch and talk a bit, discussing danger or lack thereof before they venture far. It suddenly occurred to me the chicken chatter was too loud. HA! This time, instead of jumping onto the porch, they jumped back into the house. House claimed by hens!
At dusk if I am not fast enough, at least one of the hens sits on the porch railing, the area about 8 inches from the doorknob, soulfully begging to be let in. Oh, the guilt I feel. The begging was so soulful. Emotions claimed by hens!
I know that sounds so country/hick and gross when I say the hens sit on the porch rail and actually come into the house, but unbelievably, they have only pooped on the green, plastic, grass-like door mat once and never on the porch or railing. Soap and water and a broom took care of the 4 times of poop on a step.
The hens have learned to hide from me. They like to be under a huge bush in the front yard, right next to the porch and in full sun now that there are no leaves on the tree. I can see them stand very still, and they don't know I see them! Usually, I shake the bush or throw sticks under it to flush them out. Today, I walked all the way around the house before I saw them. I had oats to entice them back inside their boundaries of the backyard. So, I went on into the back yard with the plastic pb jar of oats. I just shook it a bit, and all three stuck their heads through the glossy green leaves of the bush. They made little sounds, as if to say, "What did she have?"
I left them to their hiding and eventual scratching. Now, I am trying to think like a hen. Brain claimed by hens!
Hens have me trained well.