No more chickens on the lawn; that’s the new rule. Mr. Husband treated the back lawn with things that chickens shouldn’t eat, so Betty and Wilma have been confined to their henyard, which is plenty big for two hens. Still, Betty paced the fence, trying to find a way out to the green grass she loves.
There’s no grass growing in the henyard, so dear husband bought us an old fashioned bale of hay, to sweeten the deal. (He doesn’t do flowers, but a bale of hay is cool.)
It feels like of a rite of passage, My First Bale. I’m country now. I can lounge in the sun on my own bale of hay, chew on a straw and cluck with the biddies. I’ve taken my coffee out there, to the bale. Wine too.
The good news for Betty and Wilma is, there’s a gate in the henyard that they didn’t know about. It opens to a big world they’ve never seen, beyond the fence; a world of grass and dirt, and fields and a road and predators. One day I opened the gate and took Betty and Wilma for their first short excursion.
We stayed close to the fence at first, until I saw how they’d behave. I was a little nervous. What if they run away? What if a dog happens by? But no dogs happened and the hens kept an eye on me and stayed nearby. When it was time to go in, I shoo-shoo-ed them, like I always do and they went right back through the gate. Such obedient little hens.
I’ve taken them a little further each day, down the length the back fence. One day, a weird slap of wind reared up and blew our plumage backwards. I was afraid it would blow the hens away! I wanted to scoop them up, but that’s not realistic, so I just ran and yelled to them, “C’mon! Let’s go!” They understood.
Follow Momma! They ran as fast as their drumsticks could carry them, back along the fence, through the gate to the safety of the henyard. I was so proud of them. Such good girls.
Today, they followed me like puppies, out to the front yard. They’re getting the lay of the land. One day we’ll go all the way around the house.
I don’t leave them out in the world unsupervised. I shepherd my little flock, keeping an eye out for predators. I think Betty and Wilma enjoy our little field trips. I like to keep life interesting for them.
Daily PromptYou get fantastic news. What’s the first thing you do?
The first thing I do is tell my husband. “Betty and Wilma are so smart! Guess what they did today?”