|Biffy-Lou (left) & Phillis (right)|
They aren't yet at point of lay, however, Phillis' voice started breaking on Sunday, which is part adorable, part since-when-do-chickens-talk-back.
I named them (because Kym wanted to call them "Kentucky Fried" and "Breakfast") after probiotics, to remind the city girl in me that while they do have germs, their germs are good for me. Phillis is from Acidophilus and Biffy-Lou is from Bifidus.
You'll note in the photo above that the fence line is held down with bricks... this is because Phillis managed to escape the coop on Saturday while we were both out! We found her acting all cocky (pun intended), taunting poor Biffy with her new found freedom from the other side of the fence. We've added this extra high fence line to block them from the section of the original run where she managed to escape (there's still a bunch of fenced off area behind this where the fence has been dug into the ground so foxes etc can't get in).
Phillis is definitely the dominant chicken. She has got the moody teenager persona all worked out. But I still love her. Even if she tried to run away and made me late (and dirty) for dinner on Saturday night. We're still getting used to the whole catching chickens thing and it took us about 20 minutes to get her back into the run and coop!
Speaking of coops... Here's the one we're using to lock the girls up at night (in a loving way):
It's an old guinea hutch that I got for $20 from a work colleague. It's a nice size to keep a couple of chickens cosy at night. It needed a little work to get it chicken ready: As it's a bit hard for Kym and I to get into, we've taken off the back of the hutch and have it sitting against the shed so it's easier to get into when we need to clean it out. We also made the gap between the "ground and first floor) a bit bigger for the girls' growing hips!
We (mostly Kym) finished off the chicken-run with a makeshift gate, using a few materials we had lying around (you know how we feel about thrifting!).
Re: costs, as we used items we already owned, the only items we paid for were the chicken wire for the fence (50 metres at about $90... we've used a little over half and will use the remainder for other projects, so lets say it totaled about $50), the coop ($20) and hinges for the gate ($15), totaling $85. The chickens themselves were a gift from a friend. The girls are currently living off scraps, however, we may decide to buy some chicken-specific food in the future. Still, not to bad, eh?
Biffy-Lou (who lives up to her name) wasn't interested in having her photo taken today, but here's one more of Phillis to keep you going:
I'll be back with many more posts about the girls... I'm quite in love with them.
PS: to check out the rest of the chicken run, which we did waaaay back in August last year (!) click here.