Wade in the water

Let’s deal with it:  I’ve taken a prolonged leave from this blog because I started a new, full-time writing job at a medical device company.  A great job, but I arrive home out of words.  And dealing with the long days, taking care of the animals, family and occasionally cleaning the house, blogging hasn’t been top-of-mind.  But, perhaps the word bank has had enough deposits.


The heat of this summer has been/is something I’ve not seen in many years….well, actually, make that ever.  Though we had had some hot summer, I didn’t have chickens, so perhaps didn’t notice the weather quite so much.  Now I am aware of every nuance, as it can affect my livestock.

Luckily the Buttercups are a Mediterranean breed, light of body, large comb to cool off the body.  They’ve been ok. But a new behavior has emerged that I’ve not seen before:  wading chickens.  I’ve read pro and con about spraying water on chickens to cool them off.  Doesn’t matter much for me, my birds wouldn’t hold still even if I tried.  But…one of the hottest days of this summer I had put out extra water pans for the birds.  All I had were those shallow black feed pans, so I scrubbed several  out and filled them with water.

I noticed when I got home that night that some of the pans were filthy with dirt.  And, as I watched, several chickens walked through the water pan and out again.  Could it have been an accident?  I kept watching and saw that they were taking turns standing in the water to cool off and then moved into the shade.

I filled an extra kiddie pool for my large pen of birds–just a couple of inches–and left it under a shady tree.  Success.

So until the heat abates (which I don’t think is going to happen for some time), I’m keeping the shallow “wading pool” pans in all of my chicken pens.  Its a bit more trouble scrubbing those things out every night, so darn, I still can’t get to the vacuuming or clothes folding

Such is life!















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