Sunday, April 14, 2013

Chickens and Tomatoes

Not much happening around here yet, it's still too cold out.

Kim does have tomato plants growing along with lettuce and carrots in the cold frame.

And thanks to my friend Carol,  I have some Meyer lemon plants growing.  Perhaps someday we'll be eating lemons from our own tree!

And we're still battling Ginger's backyard adventures.
She looks as if she's ready for a fight, doesn't she?
Actually she's just prepared to dig up more of our plants.

Here she is on the back porch with Frankie.

There seem to be some pecking order issues happening within our little flock.  Since we introduced the three younger hens one year ago Brazil (our Black Australorp) has been the unhappy recipient of the bottom of the pecking order.  She's lost quite a few feathers due to this position.
We've actually witnessed Tootsie jumping on Brazil's back and pecking her.  It's very unpleasant to watch.

But lately we've witnessed Ginger being chased around by Hazel, (our second Easter Egger).  Even Brazil chases Ginger around.  We don't understand this new behavior.  When the new hens were introduced Ginger was one of the worst offenders towards them.  Now she's getting picked on by them.  Maybe they're all angry with her because she's the only one who has figured out how to escape into our backyard (chicken paradise).  Whatever the reason, I hope they get it all sorted out soon.

I did come across a great post on rearranging chickens pecking order when a hens life is at stake.  You can read all about it here.  So far we haven't seen any blood drawn.

Here Felix looks on as Tootsie (Barred Plymouth Rock), Jelly Bean (Silver Laced Wyandotte),  Peanut (Golden Sex Link), and Brazil look through the gate.

And they're all keeping the nesting boxes busy.  That's how I got a photo of Brazil this morning, she was waiting in line.  (Hazel on the left, Tootsie on the right).


Jj said...

Eh eh :) les poules font la loi à ce que je vois ! Elle veut creuser dans tes plantations, la terre y est certainement plus fraîche qu'ailleurs, comme je la comprends ! Fais lui apprendre la recette du poulet au citron, peut-être qu'en voyant les plans de citronnier elle va se calmer !

Lona said...

Your plants are really looking so nice. The girls look busy primping outside for spring. :)


Never mind the chickens, look at that silky fur on Felix! :) What a handsome young man he's turned out to be.

Your chickens are so cool. I love Ginger's feathery butt. It's neat that she and Frankie get along. But who can understand their silly antics? I'll keep my fingers crossed that there is no serious violence among them.

Great post! Thank you for your encouragement about my forthcoming book. You're such a dear friend.

Barbarapc said...

Now, if the kitty and the doggie can get along with the girls, what's with the girls? Talk about bullying, that's horrid. Hope everyone can sort things without further feathers being lost.
Really like your tree peony photo close-up. Who knew it had such an interesting bud formation?

Rosemary said...

Cold spring here too.... good luck with trying to change the pecking order, hope you can!

Anonymous said...

Poor Brazil. I feel bad for her. I'd probably be out there fussing over her & worrying myself to death over these antics. Do you intervene when you see it happening or is it better to let them work it out? Can you tell I've never had chickens?!!
I sure hope they ALL settle down soon & just enjoy the beautiful garden & surroundings they are so lucky to live in!!!!
I think it's great too that all your pets co-exist (well, besides the internal problems with the chickens)!

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Poor Brazil, hard to be on the bottom of the pecking order. We used to have three dogs, the one at the bottom of the pack always was trying to raise his status in the pack.
My friend Julie has had her chickens eating her azaleas...hope yours don't get the tomatoes.