Tuesday, November 17, 2015

From Quail Cage to Nest Boxes

The new chickens had a pen but no nest boxes. I had some quail cages but no quail ....

There are 4 quail cages, stacked on top of each other in sets of two but they weren't attached to each other so we could separate them if needed. So I took the top two cages this morning, cleaned them all out, cut off all but a few inches on the bottom of the wire. I then had to bend the remaining wire down so the chickens would not get cut on it. Turned the cage over so the solid part was on the top and I had some good nest boxes.
The really hard part was moving the big chunks of oak we still had from when the tree fell on the house but once I got them down, they rolled most of the way.

I think it looks pretty darn good.

It is possible I might have to put a step or a ramp on it for the cochin bantams but we'll see if they learn to fly up to it first.
Oh and the little brown bantam with the badly infected eye looks like it is almost completely better! The swelling is almost gone and the eye is open  and looking good.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Free Chickens!

My brother-in-law called me several weeks ago and asked me if I wanted a free male duck that someone wanted to get rid of. I have really no use for a male duck but I had an empty pen so figured I would take it anyway and give it a good home. But the pen needed cleaning so we decided he would bring it that weekend....and then it rained almost every day for 3 weeks. During that time the offer changed from one duck to 3 ducks, to 3 ducks and a couple chickens and then changed to just chickens.  He brought me 8 chickens yesterday. I did not even get to see them except in the dark on their perch because I had to work yesterday but I have been out checking on them this morning. It looks like I have 2 leghorn hens, 4 cochin that I think are two roosters and two hens, and two little brown bantams that I have no idea what are.
I noticed right off that one of the little brown bantams was not as active as the others and was a little puffed up which is a sign of sickness. When she turned around I saw one of her eyes was completely infected and swollen shut. I didn't even know if she had an eye anymore but got some Tetracycline and put it in their water. I would rather not medicate them all but don't have a separate cage ready for her so for today it went in their water. She happened to really like that water and came over and drank quite a bit. Maybe 10-15 minutes later the eye popped open and I can see that the eyeball is still alright. Several days on the Tetracycline will hopefully clear up that infection completely.
Since I didn't know what I was really getting, I am quite pleased that these are all young chickens. I believe they will be laying in just a few weeks.
I am going to make them some nest boxes out of the old quail cages and they will be all set.