I had a long list of smaller projects I really wanted to accomplish today. I completed most of them and moved to the coop so that I could shower immediately after cleaning and completing my chicken coop projects. I was hot and getting a bit grumpy. Enter Detective Quackles.
These projects included improvements to the chicken run area and the chicken coop itself, which required me to move the temporary run I had placed a few weeks ago, moving it around to contain the chickens in a place outside of the coop. I did a big deep clean of the coop, washing everything on the inside down. The Detective come running out of yard and begins pecking on the latch to the coop. I picked her up, placing her safely back in the enclosure. I walked the enclosure, fixed a few areas she may have escaped from, picked up the hose and continued cleaning. I hear a clucking coming from behind me. The Detective got out again. Placed her back inside the fencing, did the walk again and proceeded with my cleaning. I worked on some landscaping around the coop where we are placing mint and lavender to help naturally reduce the number of flies and bugs around the coop. There she is again! The Detective somehow kept finding a way out of the enclosure and running wildly around the backyard. She is the leader of the pack and each of the other chickens follows her. Each time I thought I had gotten the enclosure secure, out comes the Detective and her squad. Each time, I pushed them back into the enclosure, fixing the area I thought they had escaped from.
At this point, I am installing solar powered fans in the coop. My upper body is fully inside and I hear the sounds of happily cooing chickens, peek out and see them out freely in the yard. I decide that this is fine and will just keep an eye on them. After installing the fans inside, I moved to install the solar panel to the top of the coop. Sweat is rolling down my face and into my eyes. I am sweaty and crabby. I am reaching as high as I can, trying to get some screws in, miss the screw and jab my nail, making it bleed. I continue on, I am going to get this done. All of a sudden, I hear chicken wings flying, look over and see the Detective gracefully soaring over the fence, right into the neighbor's backyard. Awesome.
Now this neighbor's yard does not have easy access to it. I either have to: A. ring the doorbell and have them usher me through their house or garage B. Place our taller ladder over the fence, climb over it to retrieve objects from their yard and then climb back over the fence or C. Leave her and hope she flies back over the fence before the neighbors come home and let their dog out. The neighbors were not home and the Detective has caused me so much trouble that I can't let the dog have her, so I grab the ladder, place it over the fence and scale it. As soon as my feet hit the lawn on the neighbor's side of the fence, the Detective makes her gracefully decent back into our yard. If you've ever seen a chicken fly, it is anything but graceful. It is usually clumsy and done when they are scared or trying to fend off a predator. These flights were the most graceful chicken flights I have witnessed.
After making my way back over the fence, I waved my little white flag, grabbed a lawn chair and let Detective Quackles enjoy her freedom she had worked so hard for today. C brought out an adult beverage and a helping hand to install the solar panel. Tomorrow I will come back rejuvenated and ready to take on her shenanigans.