So, in one of our previous episodes, our heroine (me) found all of the hooligans (the chickens) up on the top rail of the four-foot fence that is supposed to keep the hooligans where the hooligans should be…in other words…the chickens tried to get out and they got busted.  I opened the door to the coop one morning and there they all stood…on the top rail…looking sheepish…or chickenish, in this case.

I decided that this would NEVER do and talked to Tom about extending the fence so that the little darlings wouldn’t be able to use the top rail as their new favorite perching spot.  In other words, we were going to construct the chicken version of Alcatraz and I was going to be the Warden.  Nobody was going ANYWHERE unless I knew all about it.  Chicken LOCKDOWN.

Saturday morning, we went and got all the supplies to extend the fencing.  When we got back, all the inmates…I mean CHICKENS…were all outside in the run, so we closed the door and locked them out so that we could change their bedding and work on the construction of the wall.  Of course, because we closed the door to the run, they all thought they needed to be inside and the chorus of sad clucking accompanied by the percussion section pecking at the door was PATHETIC.  They’re such babies.  I shoveled out two trash cans of shavings with them beating on the door the entire time.  We laid down two bags of soft, clean, fluffy pine shavings and replaced all the various perches, logs and branches and even added a couple of nice new logs that I’m sure probably contained termites and the next time I go out to the coop, the whole things will have been eaten by termites except for the hardware.  Listen, if it keeps those chickens entertained for a while, I’m all for it so I dumped in a big log and hoped they’d eat the termites before the termites ate the coop.

While Tom was in his shop building the extension panels for the fence inside the coop, The Warden (me) had a little talk with the captive audience in the run.  New rules, ladies and gentlemen…and Vinnie…there’ll be NO contraband, NO overnight visitors (especially foxes, weasels and raccoons), NO files hidden in cakes made from chicken feed.  They just ignored me and kept pecking at invisible snacks on the ground…except for Vinnie who was still lobbying for a treat at the side of the run.  I told them that they had to get a job laying eggs and I’d give them a dime to spend every week at the prison commissary, unless they were BAD (Vinnie) and then I’d take a dime away…Vinnie is starting out OWING me money.

Tom showed up with various tools and measurey things and started adding the new fence panels.  Vinnie was CONVINCED this was something he should be involved in and rocketed into the coop (I’d since opened the run door because the pathetic tapping was making me sad).  He stood and watched Tom with one eye while Tom used a power drill to put the panels together.  Remember…Greg taught them about power tools, so Vinnie must have felt that he was the chicken qualified for the job.  He got bored after the installation of a couple of panels and came back outside to see if I’d maybe picked some weeds, made popcorn or possibly come up with something else delicious to eat.  He resumed his treat lobbying at the side of the fence, which wasn’t getting him anywhere with me.


The extension to the fence was quickly completed and I’m convinced they’ll never get out of it and nothing can get into it.  SUCCESS!  We hung up a few decorations, I took about 2,000 pictures and we cleaned up our tools and left the chickens to go back to the house.


So, I go out to put the chickens to bed and my faithful sidekick and long-suffering husband tagged along.  Most of the chickens were in the coop and the ones that weren’t inside, came in without a struggle for a change…in other words…I bribed them with popcorn.  Oh, I know it’s not the best for them, but there’s no butter and salt and I’m TIRED at chicken bedtime, so I’ll do pretty much anything to get them to get their scaly toes inside the coop.

They made short work of the popcorn, because I hadn’t made too much.  We sat and watched them for a bit as we usually do.  Gloria, an Easter Egger hen-to-be, climbed up the branch to the roost and made herself tall and skinny and looked at the fence.  She knew SOMETHING was different, but couldn’t figure out exactly WHAT was different.  What was different was three more feet of fence attached to the railing.  What was going to be REALLY different was going to be the huge crash that she was going to make when she tried to hit that rail and instead meet a wall of wire fence.  We watched her for what must have been at least 15 minutes, which is a long time for a chicken to do any activity.  She’d look at the rail, make herself tall and skinny (as if that would help her see better), jump off the roost, walk over to the fence and look up at it, climb back up the branch, act like she was going to fly at the fence and then jump to the ground and abort the mission.  Over and over and over.  She was trying to figure it out, she just couldn’t understand what was different, but SOMETHING was.  We finally got ready to lock up and head back to the house and she was STILL trying to figure out how she could get to that rail so that she could sit on it.

No dice, girly…welcome to CHICKATRAZ!!



2 thoughts on “Chickatraz.

  1. Love your chicken stories! Your girls (and boys) sound as goofy as mine. MIne are currently squeezing through 1 inch cracks to get to the front yard (and eat my veggies) so I love the Chickentraz theme!! Thanks for posting!

  2. Pingback: Chickatraz Update | The Eggs & I

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s