Chickens Got Cabin Fever


| 3/9/2015 10:07:00 AM


Tags: Chickens, winter, spring, humor, Wisconsin, Laura Berlage,

Laying hens peak from the door to their greenhouse coop

This morning, the chicken watering vessels were torn apart and scattered across the floor, with extension cords barely attached. The feeders were flipped over, feathers and dust lay everywhere, and on each little red face was a perfect expression of exasperation. My chickens are in the grips of late winter Cabin Fever!

The turkeys with their long, scaly legs smash down the fresh snow each morning without a care, while the chickens glare at the rising snowdrift just outside their little door with their beady orange-rimmed eyes. It’s just not fair. Chickens weren’t made with long enough legs, and they’re not as immune to the cold as their knobby-necked neighbors.

The days are growing longer—but the progress is not fast enough for the chickens. Each morning, they wait for me to open their door, hoping…hoping…hoping… Nope, it’s still white out there. Buggers. These descendents of subtropical birds huff in disgust and fly up to their roots to grumble amongst themselves over their lot.

Meanwhile, I have those disassembled waterers to pick up, thaw under hot water, reassemble, and return filled with only a little grudging thanks as my reward. Oh, well, the other reward might be a half frozen egg in the corner (if I’m lucky) or a clutch of warm ones beneath an armed and dangerous lady who puffs up three times her size as I draw near (if I dare).

Being so cooped up with such fuss and feathers means the notorious dust produced by chickens has collected in the corners, on the cobwebs, and along fencing partitions in the coop until it dangles like Spanish Moss from the limbs of live oak trees. So, to keep the ladies from thinking that they live in little more than a pig sty, today I brought out the shop-vac.




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