More chickeneering part 3 – they’re in

The garden chickens moved to the allotment this evening.

I’d made the connecting bridge between the run and the house, so it was just a matter of fitting it and putting a few finishing touches to the arrangement. Why did it take me all day? These things always take longer than you think.

I had to remove a side panel to fit the bridge. I always hate cutting into run panels, in case I need to restore them, but today the only thing that needed cutting was the wire mesh, which is easily replaceable.

The picture above shows the bridge fixed to the run, but with the house not yet in position. Here’s a view from within the run.

I then turned my attention to security. The house has a simple lift off panel on the side. It’s heavy – too heavy for a fox when it’s on properly, but it wouldn’t take much of an error not to seat it securely one evening which would leave the chickens in danger. So I fitted a couple of simple plates to the bottom and a hasp and staple to the top. With a padlock, that’ll deter curious passers-by, and there’s no doubt that when the lock is on, the lid is properly seated.

Although the run was fitted with very nice sliding bolts, I’ve replaced them with padbolts.

Finally the house was given a good dusting with diatomaceous earth against red mite, and a comfy layer of Aubiose (chopped dried hemp). A dozen bags of hardwood chippings in the run, and we were ready for the move.

But no pictures of the chickens until tomorrow, I’m afraid. We left it until dusk to move them, and put them straight into the house to get used to it. Their feeder and drinker came with them too, so by the time everything was installed and ready it was too dark to take photos.

We’re quite confident that we’ve left the chickens comfortable and secure, of course, but I can’t help feeling just a little bit anxious. I’ll be there bright and early … just to set my mind at rest.

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