Morning at the chicken pen


The sun is coming up, across the bean field to the east. I walk down the driveway, Ike on leash, and head down the road to the west end of the pasture.


“Good morning, Fred.” “Good morning, Fred.” All of the broiler chickens but 1 are named Fred.


Number 6 (which is actually her age when we bought her, not her number) and a calf. I’m not sure which calf this is, or even whether he belongs to Number 6 or not.

I unhook the poultry netting from the electric, and Ike and I get to work. He walks the perimiter of the chickens’ range area, sniffing for trouble and marking his territory. I fill feeders and waters.

And then this peaceful scene dissolves with the appearance of this guy:

Wouldn’t you be intimidated if all that was standing between you and him was 42″ of unelectrified string? Or am I being wimpy?

I hold my breath and hope he doesn’t get a whiff of chicken feed and decide that’s what he wants for breakfast.

This is the scene when I leave and head for home. Chickens eating breakfast, grazing cows (and a grazing horse butt), and a dog who still looks at me in disbelief. If he could talk he’d be saying, “Are you serious?!? You’re making me chickensit again today?!?”

2 years ago:

Random gardening advice

1 year ago:

If cuteness could kill

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10 Responses to Morning at the chicken pen

  1. Linda says:

    Ike is so sweet with that pleading look of abandonment! And yes, that bull would terrify me!!!

  2. Poor Ike! But duty calls, right. And yes, I would be nervous with any bull around and an unelectrified fence in between him and I. Better to be cautious than stupid, right?Kris

  3. heyercapital says:

    I guess if the big Sire decides to ignore the plastic fence, you could hope for an adrenal-fueled, Olympic-qualifying standing vertical leap to the top of the chicken coop. :-) You have to admit that your “walk to work” is a mighty pleasant way to start the day.

  4. Kristi says:

    Bulls scare the bejeebers out of me. Maybe it was all those years of my Grandmother yelling as we ran out of the house, “Watch out for that old bull in the back pasture!!!”

  5. Bobbi says:

    Great photos! Bulls, chickens and dogs … oh my!

  6. farm mom says:

    Now, under normal circumstances, I would be ohhing and ahhing over those fine bovine specimens you have and congratulating Matt on such a fine job. ;) But those Freds are just the cutest thing ever! I never knew cornishes crosses could be so sweet.

  7. Ike is so cute! That pictures sums it right up, doesn’t it?Our bull gives me the heeby geebies sometimes too! He’s never done anything aggressive, but I’d hate to be the first.Have a great weekend!Lynsey

  8. Anonymous says:

    Your cornish rock crosses are actually out in the grass and moving! Mine just sit there, eating, drinking, defecating, and generally acting like overweight, over-privileged teenagers.They still taste good, tho.Ignatz

  9. becky says:

    I love that you named the chickens Fred. I name all animals Fred!

  10. Twinville says:

    hehehe! The things you see while out on your walks. Never a boring moment, eh?That bull is very intimidating. I don’t blame you one bit. Can they smell fear?gah!~Lisa