Arizona’s 12th Summer

arizona at fort clinch

My goodness, it seems like just yesterday she was learning to walk. Time is flying waaaay faster with the grandkids than it did with the children!

I just thought of something really scary, too. If she reproduces on my Mom’s schedule, I could be a great grandmother in FOUR YEARS! If she reproduces on MY schedule, I could be a great grandmother in seven years.

On the other hand, her youngest sister is two years old. She may be so tired of small children by the time she grows up that she’ll just get a dog.

Contemplating great grandparenthood is really strange when I’m still not sure about what I want to do when I grow up.

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5 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    arch said,

    Thanks a million Swampwoman for forwarding my message to RickZ.
    He gave me more great tips for online behavior.
    I am such an internet moron when it comes to navigating beyond email and blogs besides many other things. The only way I knew to contact you was through RD’s blog site.or Rick Z would think I dissed him. I am gracious for your efforts on my behalf. Thank you Swampwoman. Anything I can do to help you out anytime just let me know and I will do my best for it.

    Scott!

    PS. You have a great blog site. I would not have a clue how to set up or run such a thing.

  2. 2

    arch said,

    Swampwoman.

    As you know that we have two laying hens in our backyard. One of the hens will not come out of the nest in our chicken ark and the other one is picking at her.all the time now. That hen is thinking that it is sitting on eggs or something. We have no roosters so all is in vain. I have thrown it off the nest several times but it persists on sitting in the nesting area all day until the other one gets pissed and pecks at it when it has to lay eggs. These critters are weird. How do you get that broody hen to stop? We are worried that it will starve or die of dehydration because it won’t come off the nest all day or night.

    • 3

      swampie said,

      Arch, this is a good question. I have had chickens that stayed on the nest for a loooooong time even though those nests had no eggs! I have had chickens at various times trying to hatch tennis balls, those little bottles of 3 in 1 oil, and a roll of duct tape. The urge for motherhood is strong in these. Their intelligence, though, maybe not so much.

      Don’t worry, she *probably* won’t starve or dehydrate. Remember, chickens were made to stay on the nest for 21 days until the chicks hatch, then another two or three days to make sure all the eggs have hatched and to brood the chicks until they’re strong enough to follow after her when she forages for food.

      You can break the broody urge by removing her from the nest area. You can temporarily fence off a section of the chicken ark away from the nest box where she can be provided with food, water, and shade, but no nest. Alternatively, you can put her in a separate pen, again with food and water and a top to keep out rain and provide shade, but no nest area. And no pebbles or stones that she may use as egg replacements!

      We have temporary quarantine pens for injured or sick birds as well as hens with chicks and ducks with ducklings so they’ll be protected from predators and their fellow poultry. They’re square and measure 4′ x 4′ and two feet tall. They’re made out of 2 x 4s or 1 x 4s (for lighter weight), and we use the small chicken wire for chicks or hardware cloth for them. (We have a lot of them for chicks and ducklings in various stages of growth and we pretty much use whatever we have on hand to construct them.) We have various tops. I have removable lids made from 1 x 2s with a 4′ piece of metal roofing nailed on (two lids per pen). I also have pens with a piece of 2×4 screwed into the middle of the top section with two 4′ long pieces of metal roofing screwed to that middle section with a little hole drilled into the middle of each of the far sides with a small bungie cord hooked through and that attaches to the chicken wire down the side to keep the residents inside. Some of ’em just have a piece of old plywood temporarily tossed on top. You’re a carpenter so I know you can knock something together in a hurry. My motto is “chickens don’t care if it ain’t square!”

      I *use* my broody chickens to mother chicks that are orphaned, or chicks that I hatch out in the incubator. If somebody has some chicks for sale, you may want to use her to raise more chickens.

  3. 4

    arch said,

    Thanks Swampwoman. I am starting to close off the ark during the day so she cannot get back on the nest I see by your information that it is genetic and nothing more. Good information once again. I will make a pen for her to keep her off the nest We were just worried that she would starve or dehydrate to death or the other hen would continue to peck her to death so it could access the nest box to lay eggs. Chickens are new to us and I like them like pets. Scott.

  4. 5

    kae said,

    Swampie, I still haven’t decided what I want to be when I grow up.

    I’ll be 56 this year.


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