I did a bad thing today. I let all the poultry out of their pen into the main pasture to forage (because I needed to spend my time cutting hay, not moving their pen). I expected that it would be easy to lure them back in with a scoop of grain, but that was not the case. Little heads popped up all over the field when I called them, but they immediately went back to foraging.
The Rhode Island Reds probably would have come back to the house after sunset, but the others are pretty flighty. Besides, I was very tired and didn't want to wait that long. So I stationed Cerra at the gate and told her to open it whenever I herded a chicken her way. The ducks were easy; I got them into the pen in a single flock and they were so traumatized that they didn't try to come out again (ducks are such nervous creatures). Chickens tend to scatter more than flock, so I was pretty resigned to chasing each of them individually.
Paul showed up when I was about halfway through and helped me round up the stragglers. I don't think I'll be letting them all out again any time soon.
4 days ago