Monday, August 17, 2009

Chickens on the Loose!


There was quite a ruckus in our neighborhood today. Evidently, we now have community chickens. I was leaving to go to a work meeting this morning, and I saw this black and white fellow here taking a stroll through my yard. I squealed the tires slamming on the brakes. I rolled the window down and rubbed my eyes to confirm that this was not a mirage caused by getting up too early in the morning after having the entire summer off. Yes, there really was a chicken in my yard.

I had a few thoughts:

1. Wow....I knew Santa was real! He brought my chickens in the summertime, cause if he brought them at Christmas time they might freeze before I found them outside.

2. The power of positive thinking! I wished for chickens and now they are here. Okay, now think about winning the lottery.

3. Can I catch the chicken?

I looked at my watch.... ehhhhh.... no time. I cast another glance at the spotty rooster and decided if he was there when I got home from work, I would try to corral him. So, I head to my meeting, and I text my SO (significant other) to ask if my new chicken is still in the yard. He texts back, "Yeah, whatever, better not be." (He is not on board with the chicken idea yet, but I'll work on it). Later, as I sit in my really boring meeting, I receive a phone call. I missed it, but as I look at my phone, a text comes in. A frantic, "Call Me!" from my SO. I went outside to call him, and he informs me that he just spent the last several minutes trying to help a city employee try to corral five very large chickens in our back yard. He finally left because he had to go to work. The city guy also gave up, cause the chickens were way too fast and kept flying away. I would have paid money to watch these two guys chase the chickens around outside.

After I got home from work, and clearance plant shopping at Lowe's (SO says did you get anything? DUH>>>) I discovered that the chickens were in the back of the neighbors yard, clucking around some strange metal box. I took the camera and went over to inspect it. Did the neighbor put out some kind of trap? I discovered that the city person must have put out a RACCOON trap to catch a chicken. He must be some kind of idiot, because these birds are not nearly that stupid. He put corn, and I believe marshmallows in it. I didn't realize chickens were fond of marshmallows.

The chickens were also a good foot taller than the entrance to this trap. They did seem to be curious about the corn, but were snacking quite nicely on the bugs in the grass. All the neighbors came out at various intervals to look at the visitors and comment. This is some high excitement in this little town. The real fun began when a group of small boys, ranging in ages from 7 to about 12 decided to chase the chickens around the neighborhood. The birds ran very, very fast. I was surprised that the boys were no where near close to catching one. Then the boys decided to drag around a large piece of dog pen and try to trap the chicken in that. Again, the chicken outsmarted them.

He flew up into a tree, where they couldn't reach him. I was secretly glad, because I didn't like them harassing him, but I didn't want to be the spoilsport mean neighbor lady that ruins all the fun. I went over and looked up at the bird in the tree, who was clucking madly and sitting on a branch. "Sounds like he is laughing at you," I observed, and walked away. They decided to give up shortly after that.

I did some research, and as far as I can tell, our chickens are Plymouth Rock and New Hampshire Red, as well as one other kind. Here is a cool link to a site about various chicken breeds.

In other news, I have been a very busy canning mommy.

I have put away 20 lbs of green beans, 5 jars of hot peppers, a giant jar of dill pickles, and made a kick butt yellow squash lasagna. I am also going to have to make salsa again this week. At least two batches. I have hundreds of grape tomatoes plus many, many white beauty tomatoes.

I think I will make a batch of white/yellowish salsa. Any ideas what I can put in with that to make really cool colors? Yellow bell peppers maybe, and yellow onions? It will be really neat looking. My son says, please, don't put squash in it.

He really dislikes squash, I'm not sure why. Here is a picture of him poking through some cheese tortellini with yellow squash and shrimp. It was delish. As you can see, he is less than thrilled. But I keep trying. Because that is what moms do, besides follow wild chickens around with expensive cameras.


  1. I love it! It was me! I sent you the chickens all the way from Cali! I knew you wanted them, lol. Just dont tell your guy it was me. Your story made me laugh! Great canning girl!

  2. The yellow chicken looks like it might be a Buff Orpington. I have three of those. Great Story!

  3. You can start a chicken sanctuary!! I'm still convinced they came to your house because they sensed there was a lady there who would love them. And follow them around with a camera :)

    Do you think if the chickens ate marshmallows, their eggs would taste different? Gooey-er yolks? Silly city man...

  4. What fun! Does no one claim ownership of these birds? You'd think a person would notice if chickens went missing. I, too, would be cheering on the chickens, though I'd be a bit panicked for their well-being.

  5. I don't know if the people know their chickens are gone or not. It seems like they are doing well, they are eating bugs from the yard and wandering around. If no one picks them up, we will have feral chickens. LOL. they were having a crowing contest this morning from opposing trees.

  6. Oh well, kids will inherit looks through their genetic connections. But not necessarily about liking a food... haha. Much later, they learn to appreciate Mom's effort and eat anyway.... Cheers, ~bangchik

  7. I wish I had a tomato harvest like that!


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