Saturday, June 18, 2011

Peeps, 10 and 11 weeks old


On June 5th I began Part I of my Big Adventure, where I will be splitting my time between MN and WI, living and working at the Big Farm in Ontario, WI during the week, returning home to our Little Farm in MN every weekend.

That meant I was not home to see the Peeps pass their ten-week mark.  Monday, they will be turning 11-weeks old already, and I will be back at the Big Farm once again,where they just got a shipment of peeps that will be turning one-week old on Tuesday.

Is that enough peep-confusion?  Hopefully the pictures and stories I post here will keep it all clear as mud.

In the ten days I was gone, my own peeps seemed to grow another two sizes.  In addition, they are transitioning from their baby-peeping-vocalizations to a sort of teenager-ish-immature-clucking-vocalization. I really really love their baby voices, but it is also fun to see them growing up into full-sized chickens.

They're big enough now that we don't have to worry so much about the cats harassing them when they are all free-ranging around the yard together.  Kali will on occasion hide in the grass and seem to be getting ready to sneak-attack, but the chickens keep a close eye on her and give her a sharp warning if she seems to be getting any serious ideas in her head. 

They also discovered the barn while I was away.  I'm not sure how the boys feel about sharing their space, but the chickens think they are in heaven.  A whole barn, just for them!  Sorry boys. 

Their second favorite place to hang out is under the pine trees.  I had a bit of a heart-attack yesterday when I went outside to check on everyone and couldn't find a single chicken, anywhere!  Nobody in the coop, nobody in the barn, nobody running around the yard. 

A flash of gold revealed their whereabouts - all tucked neatly under one of the pines near the neighboring field. Whew!  For a few minutes I thought a fox must've snuck in and carried them all away. 

I wasn't sure how they would react to me when I came home Thursday after my long absence.  I knew Papa Bear & C-Baby were taking care of them for me.  But would they remember me?

When I arrived home that evening, I stopped the car in the driveway, leaving all my gear inside.  Before going into the house I wandered over to the chicken coop, calling as I had so many times in the past, "Where are my Chickie Babies??"  It only took a few seconds before the whole flock came barrelling out of the coop at full speed towards my voice.

Have you ever seen a chicken running full-tilt towards you, all full of excitement that you might be bringing some fresh cracked grains or freshly shredded carrots?

It is one of the simple pleasures of life, watching a chicken run.  One of the many simple pleasures that I now enjoy on a daily basis, enjoying life on the Big Farm and Little Farm.


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