Friday, May 15, 2009

varied sides of a creative mind

today ran the gamut

several hours at a university information technology committee meeting this afternoon to chicken training in the eve. yup you heard right chicken training and yes an artist as part of the big it committee. the connection?

a creative thinking mind

what was nice about today's it committee was that is was not a day of ones and zeros speak. we were actually tackling progressive tactics to help a great body of faculty and administrative folk of the university. i can't really talk about the topics of the meeting - it's one of those if i tell ya i have to kill ya kind of things. so let's just say it was a good good day and move on to chicken training.

the dark cornish chickeny creatures have been displaying a wish to roost for at least a week, possibly longer. i cannot say that it threw me off guard but i can say that i had not thought to plan for such a possibility considering my recent experience with the rouge freedom ranger meaties which showed no roosting interest throughout their days probably due to their larger built frame and size.

once i figured out that the sleeker stealthier dark cornish were not only wishing to roost but proving that they could fly considerable altitudes in search of a roost, i turned my scan the streets eye toward a search for a two large sticky branch roost options. i was looking for something six foot plus long. i had very particular requirements for the sticky branches.
  • i wanted good girth for strength
  • rough bark to allow the chickeny feet a good grabbing surface
  • sticky branches with interesting shape - curves are good as they increase the amount of roosting space available.
  • lastly - no termites - no nasty ants
as luck would have it, today was the day for the find. i was on my way to work when wooooo! there they are! perfection!

i looked at my watch noticing that i had plenty of time; at least 45 minutes extra before i really had to be on my way - good to go. i got out, packed them up, headed back home, stopped in the house, changed back into my hippychickenfarmer work clothes and started in. ughhhh!!! the screw gun battery was dead. so i put everything aside, placed the battery in the charger, went back inside, changed into my university attire and hit the road.

to cut a long story short. i installed the two sticky branch roosts just as it was getting dark. for those of you folk who raise chickens you might think - oh my! not the best timing my dear. for those of you folk who do not raise chickens, it is important to realize that this is exactly the time of day when chickens like to retire for the evening. so as you might imagine, suddenly there was quite a hubbub in the coop. excited as they might be, a good number of the chickens were very interested in what i was up to.
in fact, i am beginning to believe that chickens truly adore screw guns. each of my chickeny creatures love to peck and check out the screw gun. they do not care for the measuring tape. they do not care for the level. they do adore the screw gun.
back to the long story short (ha ha). once the two sticky branches were up, one above the other, the lower further away from the wall than the above (so they don't poop on each other), i began to load the chickens onto the roost. a good number settled right down, happy as clams on a roost in chicken coop. others were a bit confused. some not so graceful on the sticky branch. i chose not to judge as i myself am not so graceful on the dance floor ( i understand).

most stayed, several immediately closed their eyes which signaled to me that i had done well in fulfilling a desire properly. three or four chose to stick to the floor for the evening. we'll see who's still roosting in the morning. truth is, they could use one more roost. i plan to visit the stash i pulled from this morning tomorrow morning for a third perfect sticky branch.

i then moved on to the tin/metal shed coop. the younger eight lady layers had been making a habit of roosting in the laying nests for the evening and i thought it about time they try out their two supercool sticky branch roosts. it was pitch dark in the coop so i carefully felt for each chickenlady then quietly transferred each girlygirl from nest to the upper of the two roosts. there was a slight hubub from one or two of the girls but most transferred peacefully. i made sure all girls were side by side before leaving. chickeny habits are sometimes hard to crack. we'll see where they are come morning. i may have to repeat the process a few nights before they get the message - never know - we'll see.

i imagine the chickeny creatures in both coops will over time prefer to roost on the sticky branches.

in regard to the choice of sticky branches over lumber. to me it makes perfect sense. in the wild, chickens would roost in trees. thus branches over lumber. plus i like to use natural materials as much as possible and frankly branches are free. another good bit - you don't have to cut down a whole tree to get a branch as you might for lumber. get a good windy day and walla - branch harvesting a la mother nature.

tomorrow morning
- adding supers to the bee hives -
get it?

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