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Wednesday, December 7, 2011

I Miss My Hens

Tonight was the first night in their almost-secure pen. As I sat here talking on the phone to a friend, I sobbed to her that I missed their sitting five feet from me in their little cage, that I was lonely. I shed a few tears. I had no idea this would be so difficult!

Later, I will post pictures of the raccoon proofing. Even with a few generous donations, I am still suffering from what I had to spend out of pocket and  what I owe Charlie.

Mark came Monday and Tuesday to finish what he and Charlie did not finish on Saturday. sigh...but the hog wired laid on the ground and slipped under the sides of the pen have not yet been tied to the pen's bottom rail. Mark will return on Thursday to finish the job. I certainly hope raccoons do not breach the bottom. I have landscaping pins to hold the four-foot wire down so I won't trip on it and so the lawnmower will not suck it up or get tangled in it.

I was getting so tired of chicken gas or poop late at night, filling the I am not missing that. Sometimes, one of the hens squawked in her sleep, a dream I guess.  Hens snore! You did not know that? LOL I could barely get in the back door with them in the cage, behind the door. I struggled.  They hated music I played, especially the them to Little House on the Prairie. They hear me get up and called to me to take them out. The cage was so heavy I felt I hurt myself, shoulder, knee, and back, anew each morning and night. But, I miss them. Maybe someday I will have a house with a chicken room attached so they will be close but I won't feel like I am living with livestock.

This afternoon, about 4:15, I found all three hens sitting on the green, fake-grass doormat in front of the side door, the door I carry them through each morning and night. I loaded them into their house cage, put the cage in my wagon, and took them to the fortified pen. Mark put the cageful of hens into the wagon for me. They jumped right into the pen when we put the wagon in front of the pen door and opened the cage. They just hung out as I twisted wire to keep the raccoons from flipping up the bar.

As we walked away, all three ran to the door, fussing to get out and come with us. Fancy was the most vocal. It made me sad. I had pretty hens who wanted/needed to come with me. They were very vocal, bukking to me. As we stood at the side door, all the way on the other side of the house from them, I could hear them sort of wailing, not a usual chicken noise at all, just begging for me to come back. As I tuned and watched them at the door, I thought they looked dejected.  It broke my heart. What did they think?

Surgery for Thursday has been postponed because I cannot afford the lift chair I need to help me get up with only one arm and walking where I need to go after surgery, mainly, the bathroom. No, I cannot afford a used chair.  Right now, I am just wanting a Christmas tree and cannot afford one. I think I need hen ornaments.

Maybe my Fancy, Thelma, and Louise will be alive tomorrow.
If not, I trap raccoons!

Your turn
These are my pets. Do any of you have hens that you are missing for any reason? I am not talking about missing your layers. I am talking about missing sweet little hens. Do you have hens you are attached to that you would miss?


  1. "Surgery for Thursday has been postponed because I cannot afford the lift chair I need to help me"

    Thanks for reminding me that I should never forget to be grateful for the wonderful UK NHS - based on the follow three core principles

    * that it meet the needs of everyone
    * that it be free at the point of delivery
    * that it be based on clinical need, not ability to pay

  2. Furtheron, Thanks. Helpful (sarcasm) friends say,

    "Just buy a used one. They are for sale everywhere."

    Or, "You can always just rent one."

    No one seems to understand that I cannot afford to rent or buy used. I never thought my life could be like this. Considering I will need this chair for life after each of three surgeries, renting could be expensive. Used gives me the heebie jeebies, but it doesn't matter since I could not afford even that price. Maybe I should move to England for a couple of

  3. That's sad and sweet. I think it will all be good for them and for you once everything settles down. Can't wait to see photos! And I'm glad you started blogging again. I was worried after the last few days that you were tapering down!

  4. LindaM,
    They are alive this morning!!!!
    Yes,I do know it is for the best. When exbf arrived just now, I had him go see if they were alive. They will be getting three more hours of daylight. They and I get freedom. Yes, I was drained by the activity and stress of people being here without progress.

  5. If I had chickens and raccoons got to them, I would do more than simply trap and release the raccoons. I'm just saying...
    Good luck with your surgery.
    Your Friend, m.

  6. Where I live, it is recommended that the wire for the chicken pens be buried 2 feet into the ground, and then framed in with wood at the base where the ground meets the wire. I have a raccoons that visit, and I am amazed at how clever they are. It appears that they can get into anything!

    I would do an electric fence wire around maybe 8 inches from the pen. I bet a couple of shocks would have them looking for dinner elsewhere. Just remember to turn it off every morning.

  7. I don't trap and release. I trap and send to animal control who supposedly has them euthanized.

  8. oh PracticalP - i wish that we were closer!

    your friend,

  9. Kathy,
    What I have heard recommended was burying one foot of wire or some sort of metal a foot down. Okay, now you make me think it was two feet.

    I read a study that said raccoons were taught to open 13 types of locks and two years later they could still open 11 of the locks. Or, something similar.

    I would have put an electric fence down in a minute if I had not put the pen under the canopies of two trees. This move was to give the hens respite from the heat in the summer.

    I just hope Mark comes back soon and attaches the four-foot wide piece of wire to the bottom of the pen to keep them completely out. Right now, about six inches to four inches of hog wire is just laying on the ground. The idea is that they are not clever to move back four feet to dig under the edge. Hope that idea pans out.

    Thanks. That would be great.


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