After a few forced early morning starts something had to go down – big time!
Chicken drumsticks? Chicken soup? Chicken fillets?
To our horror, our lovely, quiet chooks all of a sudden decided that getting up at the crack of dawn and exploring the yard in a noisy fashion was cool. While exploring, they would spread out from one end of the garden to the other. One chook would be in the box laying her egg while the others busied themselves foraging for insects in the bushes. Then they would decide to check on one another to make sure everyone was accounted for (perhaps they heard me talking about chicken drumsticks, chicken soup and chicken fillets). The squarks and chatter would carry across our yard – back and forth, back and forth. My husband and I would jolt awake, jump out of bed and try to shoosh them – I am petrified of disturbing the neighbours!
So before we prepared to eat them, we decided to try a few things first
Our first plan of action – keep the chooks locked up in their pen until 7am. We closed up the little hole in the wire part of their cage which they could previously wander in and out of from their pen to the yard whenever they felt like it. This tactic didn’t work as the very next morning we experienced the earliest wake up call ever – 5am! It seems the chooks were up and bored from being all cooped up in the pen.
Our second and final plan of action – completely black out the pen. We figured the sun was responsible for letting them know when it was ‘appropriate’ to get moving, so we decided to control the light! Hubby spent most of Sunday making a door and covering the holes with boards. We put their seed and water in the pen so they had something to do in case they woke up early again and we went to sleep with joy in our hearts hoping that this was the solution we were craving. The result was perfection! 7am and no noise. We let them out just before we went to work and everyone went about their business refreshed and happy!
Here is a picture of the new and improved blackened out pen:
So if you have a problem with vocal chooks, make their pen as black as possible!