Lucky's friend

Posted by theresa | Aug 8, 2008

We've been negligent in posting updates on our fine feathered friend. The big news is that Lucky now enjoys the company of a lady friend whom Hayley and Ellen named Lucia. Lucia is a layer hen but thus far has only laid one egg for us. It's likely that the trauma of moving to her new home will put her into a molt so we're not holding our breath for more eggs any time soon.

For their first week together Lucky was terrified of Lucia and would "fly" to the opposite end of the chicken tractor whenever she approached him. But after a week of forced companionship he finally realized she was not a threat to his life and started to crow again. Now they get along fine. The girls have somehow even "trained" the chickens to walk up the plank into their house in the evening. This beats trying to catch 2 chickens every night before going to bed. Some nights it took a really long time and multiple adults helping. We generally lock them in their house overnight so that the clever racoons around our house won't have a chicken dinner.

Our Boy is Growing Up

Posted by tom | May 25, 2008

Our Boy is Growing Up. ... Maybe it's because we have no sons in our family that I think of our chicken as our boy, but our boy figured out how to crow this week.  Hayley and Ellen heard him first since they are the ones outside taking care of him every day, but I heard him for myself for the first time on Friday.  It's a pleasant cock-a-doodle-do at this point -- not so loud yet and very occasional.  I suspect that will change. Unfortunately, I think his maturation also includes his personality which has morphed from a gentle, even Eden could hold him, chicken to a typical territorial rooster who pecks at your hands when you reach into his house to change his food and water.  He's also much more difficult to catch if need be.

Friday was a big day for Lucky Fluffernutter.  He visited Mrs. Spickler's second grade class -- the kids who so carefully raised him from egg to hatchling.

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Lucky Bird

Posted by theresa | Apr 21, 2008

  

I'm a Lucky Bird!

On Thursday the weather was sufficiently warm enough to take Lucky outside for the first time. I expected him to dart out of his cage and run, but instead he preferred to hang around the girls and I. Even when we weren't directly paying attention to him he didn't wander off. And darned if I didn't begin to feel just a little, shall we call it, affection for this fowl! Eventually the 3 kids tired of watching a chicken wander around and went inside to watch tv. I on the other hand, continued to sit in the warm spring sunshine with a young chicken sticking close to my side. He preferred to stand underneath my chair. Then I decided to assemble a little red wagon that we had purchased in January, so I brought that out. Lucky then preferred to stand inside the box that the wagon came in.

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Lucky's New Home

Posted by theresa | Apr 6, 2008

One day last week Lucky hopped up onto the top edge of his carboard box.  Fortuitously we saw this day coming and had just borrowed a rabbit cage from Tom's parents. So the next day, we moved Lucky to his new digs. As Eden says, Ucky have new home! We're still using the heat lamp, especially since the cage is draftier than the box. Ellen and Hayley are very good about giving him clean water twice a day. Lucky is very curious. If you stick the thermometer through the cage he likes to peck at it. And the other day when I cleaned Avery's cage (the canary), I set Avery's cage on some paper on the floor next to Lucky and Lucky was very interested in his fellow fowl. Normally Avery's cage hangs on a stand high above Lucky's cage so this was the first they saw beak to beak. Check out the new pictures and note Lucky's new big bird feathers.

A Lucky Thermostat

Posted by theresa | Mar 20, 2008

I'm not always the brightest bulb in the box, but I eventually catch on. For almost 2 weeks now Hayley and Ellen have been complaining that they were cold in their basement bedrooms. First I chalked it up to being sick -- they did suffer from chills. Then I decided we had all gotten used to warmer outdoor temperatures and sunny days warm up our upstairs to 70 degrees even in the winter. So comparatively the basement just felt cooler. The basement thermostat always read 68 degrees, so it was obviously just our perception.

Then it hit me yesterday. Lucky's box and requisite heat lamp sat directly under the thermostat! Of course it was toasty in that spot. But the rest of the basement was cold! So I moved Lucky's box to the other side of the room and wouldn't cha know it -- the basement feels pleasant again.

Lucky Fluffernutter Flourishes

Posted by theresa | Mar 17, 2008

Having survived his first week in our home, Lucky is flourishing.  He eats at least 2 dishes of feed each day and his wings have sprouted "real" feathers. He's also become more skittish of being picked up. I suppose we should handle him more if we want him to become more pet-like.


[Note:  Visit the Lucky Comes Home to Roost folder to keep track of the photos.]

Most importantly we need to seriously think about what kind of home he will move into next. We'd like him to be outside, yet protected from predators and the elements.  But what do we do in the winter? Can a chicken survive outside alone all winter? Maybe we'll get some cute Easter pictures with a real live chick this year.  Just so he doesn't poop on the new Easter dresses...

"Chick" This Out

Posted by theresa | Mar 8, 2008

On Friday we adopted Lucky Fluffernutter, the lone chick from Hayley and Ellen's classroom embryology unit. Each second grade class was given 12 eggs to hatch. All 12 of their class's eggs died. Another class generously gave two more eggs to them, of which one hatched. Appropriately, they agreed to name him "Lucky." It's now up to us to keep this chick alive--single-handedly holding the delicate psyches of 25 second graders in the balance.

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