Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Great Job Jack!!!

 The construction is done. Jack, you amaze me. I love it.
As you can see, Jack tacked up a board over the window to keep the wind from blow right through the coop. The chickens are still young and need a little extra heat. We have the heating lights on in the night. A few more weeks and we can take the lights out.

 Now it's up to Hazel to get it painted.

 Here is the nesting box. We have it sectioned off for now. We will make it available to the birds when they are a little older and ready to start laying. I expect eggs sometime in September.

 Inside the nesting box. This is Temporarily where the light switch is. 

 Prepping for painting.

 I am actually using a solid stain. We chose Barn Red.

First coat. 
I think that I'm really gonna like this color.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Chicken Update

The chicks are now about five and a half weeks and three and a half weeks. They have been in the coop for about a week now. They really like it out there and it is soooo much cleaner and easier to keep clean. When they were in the house, I had to clean out the box and change the water twice a day. Now I can quickly clean out the coop once a day. I just roll up the newspaper and throw it in the trash, scrape the poop off of the little roosting boards and the water lasts longer than a day because it stays cooler.

On the ground, you can see dandelion greens. They just love them and they are very nutritional. They also like to play keep away with them. It's quite entertaining.

The kids just love being in with the chicks.

Friday, May 13, 2011

A Full Day's Work

 Jack got quite a bit done today. He got the coop door made and installed along with the hard ware and hardware cloth.

 The nesting box is on but Jack will encase it in bead board that we have left over from another project. The lid is put on with a piano hinge.

 The pop door is rigged with the string and pulley so it can be opened from outside of the coop.

Framing around the window, sandwiching in the hardware cloth.

The sun is just setting and Jack  is trying to get the tar paper on the roof before he quits for the day.

Update on Chance

After a couple of days force feeding this little birdie, I have seen a great turn-around.
She has started to chirp now and is starting to have more awake time.
I put her out onto the grass in my yard to see if any parents would claim her. She sat there and chirped away. Several birds came around and checked her out. Was one of them her mother? I don't know. I will try it again today.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Just Call Me the Bird Lady of the OC

Okay...so I don't know what it is, but it's getting kinda weird around here. Or maybe it's just spring and the environment is coming alive. Lots of pollen, insects and birds. All I do is sneeze. Anyway... yesterday, DD and Jack Jr. noticed a large blue colored bird beating up on a poor little starling. They scared the larger bird away and picked up the unconscious starling. It was still breathing but didn't look very good. It was bleeding from the back of it's head. I just told them to throw it in trash on top of the grass cuttings and leave the lid open. I had them do this so that if it died, I wouldn't have to deal with it, and if it got better, it would just fly out. Well, as time went by, we checked on it and found that it was now conscious, but it wasn't moving around. 
We threw the bird in here at first because we thought it was dying.
 So we decided to give it a chance at life and put together this box with pine shavings.

 DD reached in and retrieved the bird from the green can.

 We put it in the box and left it covered over night in the back patio. 

 I wasn't expecting this, but it was still alive in the morning.

 I called the wild animal rescue and release people, but they said that they don't accept starlings.

 I emailed them these pics and they said that it was still a young bird and that it would have to be hand fed and re-hydrated. They gave me some instructions.
(I also looked online)

 One of the instructions was to get a heating pad to put under the box. I covered it with a trash bag to protect it at I still use it and want to keep it clean.

 Here is the cooked yolk of an egg. I mixed it with some water and put it into a syringe.

 She took a little of it... I will try again in a couple of hours.

I'm hoping that it will get better quickly so that I can release it. I don't have enough room for another pet bird.
Although we did give it a name.... Chance.  
Good luck Chance.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

A Project for Hazel

I love riding my bike. I have been doing it for over twenty years. Back when DS #2 (who is now 20yrs old) was a baby, I bought this Burley Bike Trailer. They were top of the line back then and I can see why. It was used when I got it so I'm not sure exactly how old it is, but it has definitely been used and it has been ignored or neglected for about a decade. It has even been left out in the element for quite a while too. The amazing thing is that when I resurrected it, I was surprised to find that it was still in pretty good shape. It was sun bleached, but the fabric was still in good condition as well as the frame. The only real problems were #1 the inner tube needed replacing and #2 the protective screen was so fragile that you could easily poke your finger through it. (something that I did a few times while just getting it out from the side of the house.)
I rode my bike to HD and purchased a roll of fiberglass screen, about $6.

I then measured and cut the required size, easily tore out the old screen....

 ...and sewed it into the original canvas-type cover.

 I forgot to take a before picture, but here is the after. DGD wanted to test it out in the Dark. I rode it around the block with her in it...all you could hear in the dark streets were the giggles of a four year old princess in her make-believe Cinderella Coach.
Now I plan to run many of my errands on bike to combat those rising gas prices.

Jack Has Been Working Very Hard

The door to the run is on and I am impressed on how sturdy it is.

The siding is up and the pop door is installed. We still need to add the string so we will be able to open it from the outside of the coop.

Chicken ramp installed.... rungs are about three and a half inches apart.

Tongue and groove siding is up and next will be the coop door,
 window and  nesting boxes.

They Are Growing Quickly

 It's unbelievable to see how quickly the girls are growing. Ember on the right is three and a half weeks old, the other three are one and a half weeks old. It amazing the difference that two weeks can make.

 Shortie is on top of the world... or at least on top of the feeder.

 Today we are testing out the run part of the coop. They laid in the sun and took dust baths.

 DGD just loves the chicks. She is very gentle with them and just loves being with them.

 DD loves them too.

Ahh, the joys of  spring.