How are we gonna’ keep the kids down on the farm, now that they’ve seen our neighbor’s yard?
That’s right, our 12 adolescents are being, well, adolescents. They want to explore, they want to stretch their wings, they want to go over to our neighbor’s yard where the grass (due to maintenance and fertilizer) is far greener.
This is the first time in all our years of having chickens that we’ve had wanderers and I’m not happy about it.
Not that I mind our chickens exploring, heck go ahead and do that all you want. It’s just that it’s not fair for our flock to be eating our neighbor’s grass (and depositing the remnants of that which they have eaten when they are through.) Our family has made the decision to have chickens in our backyard. Avoiding, um, chicken-bombs is a price we pay (along with chickens under the table hoping for scraps to fall at dinner time.)
But our neighbor’s don’t have chickens. I’m not sure how happy they are going to be with our flock constantly in their backyard. Our neighbors also have a dog. I couldn’t blame any dog for attacking a chicken that went into its yard. Seriously, no argument there, the dog is right, I’m at fault – you win.
For now, we have corralled our babies in the dog pen when they are outside. I’m hoping that this might break their wandering habit, but quite frankly, I don’t have too much hope. In their numbers, they have brazenly become a street gang, banding together and flaunting their disdain of rules. In short they have become teens, and as we all know, there “ain’t nothin’” we can do about that other than try to survive the years until they become adults.
It’s been said that fences make for bad neighbors.
In this case, however, I think a well-placed fence might go far to maintain a semblance of peace in our, so-far, chicken-tolerant neighborhood.
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.
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