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Sunday, August 31, 2014

Chicken Talk

not feeling well

The morning after Thelma spent the night out of the pen, she retired to the back of the pen with tail down and head pulled in. She ate nothing, just stood. It made me sad to think she might die. Unlike Fancy, Thelma would not come out so I could hold her.

In the picture above, she had her head down and tail down, just standing. Then, I bent over, trying to take a picture under the table. Thelma then stood up, raising her head and tail a bit. So, I did not get the shot I wanted.

Since she barely could walk the first morning back, maybe she failed to jump up to the table or from the table to nest. Maybe she left the open pen for a safer place to sleep. Maybe her failure to jump up is why there were feathers right in front of the table. I had wondered why there was no trail of feathers like when the two little ones were killed and obviously dragged off.

At any rate, she barely seems interested in eating. She just walks a little and stands.

One morning, I took cherries that rolled all over the kitchen floor, salad left from exbf, apple cores, and various fruits and vegetables. Well, there were three stunned hens, walking around like the earth had ended. If they don't get oats, they are sad. So, they all just left the pen, walking dispirited, looking for bugs.

(Okay, I am sitting here at McD's with a back still aching from Saturday night's visit. So, it will be hurting worse tomorrow.)

It appears that Thelma is getting better. The first day when she did not seem so ill, her crop seemed larger, engorged. But, neither exbf nor I can reach her when she won't come out of the corner! Well, we could dismantle the set-up. She has not given up an egg, either. I have had hens walk around like this, tail down and head down and pulled in before. Only Fancy did not get better.

The little one is taller than Patsy Cline. She seems all neck and legs. Seriously, I think her neck grew three inches taller one night. I do hope the little one is a hen.

Your turn
Does anyone agonize over their hens' safety? Do your hens appear visibly ecstatic or sad according to what they receive to eat? Going home.


  1. Good luck. I will cross fingers, toes and eyes that Thelma pulls through.

    1. She seemed to feel better today. It must have been your crossed eyes that made the difference. Thanks.

  2. There's nothing that makes me like a person more than the realization that they love animals. It's a marker for "good folks."

    I always agonize over the health and welfare of all my critters, even some of the wild ones. When I raised chicks in the incubator, I worried they would have trouble getting out of the shell or that the other chicks would pick on them (not so weird, occasionally, the other chicks would kill a chick that was less than perfect).

    My chickens were happy with the regular chow, but add table scraps and you'd think they won the lottery - so, a BIG YEAH for ecstatic culinary delight.

    1. I am "good folks" that loves my chickens. I cannot pet animals or live with them in the house because of my allergies, so people assume I hate their cat because I will not pet it or hold it and shoo it away. Same with dogs. However, I have rescued numerous dogs and cats--I call someone when I see a dog in distress. My neighbor's dog had hung itself on a 6 ft fence. I rushed to the 15 yr.old neighbor who scaled the fence with a single bound and got the dog loose. I could never have gotten into their fence or lifted the dog to get it off the fence.

      That just kills me to see chicks killing another one. Once, a chick was down and being pecked to death. The poor chick could not stand. It was still nipping grass and eating. I got the chick out and brought it indoors until it grew down back on its bloody little head. That was Fancy who talked to me all the time.

      Cherdo, they have to have oats first before they are happy with scraps. It is amusing. I just walk away, and they follow. Soon they go back and eat the scraps and look happy.

  3. Hope she's feeling better soon.


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