Oh those darn kids are at it again. While the neighbors on one side of us don’t mind chickens in their yard (they said that they’ve seen a dramatic reduction of ticks this year and were happy about that), our chickens (really it’s just the juvenile gang that’s doing this) have now traveled through the woods to our *other* neighbor’s yard.
They weren’t so happy.
We got a knock on the door. “Um, your chickens are in our yard. They’re kind of out-of-control.”
And yes they were.
Those brazen little-hoodlum-this-spring chicks were parading right through the volleyball net area set up for a party later that day.
Didn’t blame them a bit. It’s one thing to put up with the chicken poop in your own yard, quite another to ask a neighbor to put up with it. Especially when they are having guests over.
And here’s the rub, with our older flock and our newer juveniles, we aren’t getting very many eggs. We can’t even send over a dozen or two eggs as a peace offering. Next Spring, check us out, but right now? We’ve got very little. There was nothing to do but shoo our chickens back into our yard and then babysit them until it was time to go into the coop.
Respect for your neighbor’s property and peace is a huge part of having a backyard flock. For now, (because I can’t really separate them) our flock is under house arrest. I’m only letting them out around dinner time and I make sure I have some scraps for them to munch as enticement to stay in our yard.
Because it’s starting to get darker earlier, there’s not enough time to explore the neighborhood. They eat, scratch, drink, exercise for a bit and then start heading back into the coop.
Of course if this doesn’t work, I may consider electronic bracelets (joking) to keep track of my law snubbing youngsters. It is my sincere hope is that with maturity, eventually these juveniles will come to respect some rules and boundaries.
But with this rough riding youth gang – I’m not going to hold my breath.
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
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