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Friday, September 2, 2011

Full-fledged Hen Rebellion

Remember this picture of Fancy and Thelma sitting on the porch railing, refusing to come in?
Thelma turned to ignore me; Fancy in foreground
Well, it keeps happening. That night, I did not fix their cage in a timely manner and it was dark. Well, I still don't feel well, and put off taking out the poopy paper, putting in new paper, and bringing the cage into the house with the house door open.

For three nights or more, Louise has decided she would just get in the cage early. She will get in with poopy paper, clean paper, or clean, bare cage. If I leave the lid down, she sits on top. It does not have to be dark for her to get in. As a matter of fact, the other two are down on the ground and she just goes to bed.

Last night, I decided to go to WalMart about midnight. As I opened the door and was about to stagger out, I suddenly saw Fancy sitting on the door mat, close to the door opening and right on the edge of the porch. Goodness! She scared me because at first she was a blob. I could have stepped right on her!

What if a raccoon had come? What if I gone to bed and left her out all night? I remember distinctly hearing three WHUMPS as the three of them jumped in the cage, landing as usual without bending their knees. Or did I remember that? Did I hear it? How could I just close the cage and not notice I only had two hens? How could I cover them up and talk to them and not notice there were only two. Am I getting to be a bad Chickie Mama? Noooo, I am still ill. Still had this fever since At least July 12.

This makes me feel like the time I did my carpool turn and dropped off all the kids in the car, only to realize I had left my own three-year-old at playschool. In all fairness to me. I did put him in the car. He just decided he would get out when I was not looking!
So, tonight, I procrastinated once again and waited until pitch dark to go out and fix their cage. I heard them jumping and hitting the door and complaining. Finally, I went to fix their cage/bed. Louise was on the porch rail near the door, waiting on me. Fancy and Thelma were sitting on the railing, right up next to the door. I fixed the cage. I put it in the house. Louise jumped right in as though she could not wait. Then, she sat down. I washed my hands and came back. Fancy and Thelma were stuck to the rail and trying to sleep. I turned on all the outdoor lights. They complained.

Aaaack! I feel too bad for this. I picked up Fancy and placed her in the cage. Less than ten seconds later, I had Thelma and turned back to the cage. Fancy jumped out as I was picking up Thelma! So, I put Thelma in the cage, and she tried to jump out! I got Fancy and tried to put her in. It was like trying to put a cat in a bag, a cat with wings. In my haste to get her and keep Thelma from getting out, I did not have one wing secured. Soooo, I am being flogged by a wing and Thelma is trying to jump. As I shut the cage, both were squawking at me. Louise was sitting and looking annoyed at all the jumping and tromping on her.

They have never tried to sleep on the railing until now. Not once since last October 18, the night of Chessie's murder and the beginning of their living in the house with me, have they ever tried to get out of their cage in the house!

Okay, I am going to bed now, at 8:30, waaay too early for me. I did not even reread this for any kind of errors in grammar, structure, or punctuation. Good night.

Your turn
Have your chickens rebelled suddenly?


  1. Yikes! I'm guessing that the rail must feel safe for them if its higher off the ground but I never heard that chickens roost up high like some ducks do.
    Not sure what to say. Can you train them again?

  2. LindaM, Chickens will always roost high, in trees if they can get there. Or, on a roost in a hen house. It is one of two things: their true roosting nature is kicking in and they don't want to sit in the cage,or I am getting them in too late. I suspect it is my fault since Louise still wants to come in or at least sleep in the cage If it were the high rail, then Fancy would not be sitting in front of the door when I accidentally left her out.

  3. Hmmm, now ya got me worried PP, since I'm working on a coop here. My chickens have always roosted as they please, usually in the barn rafters. I hope I don't have a revolt here when I move them into a coop....

  4. LOL...mmpaints, I doubt it. They will just go as high as they can. The problem was ME, as I expected. Tonight, as soon as they came on the porch and called me out, I went out and put the cage inside the house. They all three jumped right in. Fancy and Thelma led. Louise was just acting confused. Within one minute, they were all in the cage and in the house. You may have to force them in the first two or three nights, maybe close the barn and put them in the new coop, one at a time. When I started bringing them in so the raccoon would not murder another hen, I waited until they got in the coop, but before dark. Then, they squawked and held onto the Rubbermaid boxes they slept in, held on for dear life and flapped their wings because I could not get the wings before they started flapping. After two or three nights, they came to the house door.

    Close the barn doors before dark and get them as they try to congregate at the

  5. such rebels! guess that's why I continue to encourage hubby to get some chickens, instead of getting and caring for some myself! ;)

  6. Dmarie, LOL...actually, they are easier to care for than a cat or dog. It is just this "where I sleep" thing. Last night, I put the cage where I was supposed to, and they came in quickly and peaceably! You just have to learn chickens and how their brains operate. I was too sick to care about what I knew. Go ahead and get chickens!

  7. soo glad you're feeling better! I do think we'll end up with chickens when we get tired of traveling. meantime, it's enough to ask DD to care for the dog when we're away. but I will continue to live the chicken-farmers life vicariously here! ;)

  8. Dmarie, There is still pain and the fever, not feeling well even after a month.

    I cannot travel even to the hospital for surgery until I get them secure from raccoons. Once a day is all the chickens require. She could just gather eggs. If you get large waterers and feeders, they can go many days without a refill. Actually, the hens would be much less trouble than the dog. But, feel free to live vicariously through my three


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