Escape Artists

I understand free-ranging. I do. You set the animals free, they eat, they get fat. You don’t have to feed them grain or hay. And, best of all, it doesn’t matter if they escape because they are already free.

Escaped Chickens

We have several escapees every day. My day would be dull if, at some point, I didn’t walk outside and see a goat wandering around the house. Or chickens in a neighbor’s yard. Or chickens with the goats. And I don’t want life to be boring. I so enjoy herding (yes, herding) chickens at 2:30 in the afternoon when it feels like I might as well be living in the Sahara.

As I leisurely strolled to Hattie and Jeepers’ pen this afternoon, I almost tripped over a chicken. My first thought: okay, a chicken escaped. (Always read “escaped” as “e-scah-payed.” What? Haven’t you seen Finding Nemo?) Then I looked around. I could see FOUR chickens out. Four. Back inside I went. I needed backup, and I knew it. I called in the big guns. I got Tank.

Outside once again, I counted the chickens that were left inside the tractor.

Four inside. Four outside. That’s not too bad. I can catch four chickens. But how did they escape?

This is NOT how you keep chickens in a chicken tractor.

Oh. That’s how.  Hm. I don’t think Danny realized he did that this morning when he moved them. Oh well. Four chickens. I can catch four chickens.

Then I decided to text Danny, just to be sure there were only eight total.

I didn’t like that answer. That answer meant I had seven or eight to catch. Not four.

But, I have Tank. Tank can catch them. And if he does too good of a job, we’re having chicken for dinner.

Just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, I saw this:

Five escaped chicks, too.

Another easy fix.

Thirty minutes later, I had caught all five chicks and four teenage chickens. The remaining three had a great hide out.

Three more to catch. Just three more. I can do three more. I can. Tank, apparently, couldn’t. He had gone to the porch to wait for me to let him in. Faced with the possibility that I might have to catch the last chickens with no help, I stopped and thought about how to catch them.

I think I’ll wait until Danny gets home.

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