Up to late autumn we had been managing to let the girls out most evenings and at weekends and they of course loved it. However as the winter evenings drew in and they only came out at weekends - and if the weather was wet (and weekend rain seems to be a mainstay of British life) they stayed in anyway, we decided to increase the size of the run.
Positives and negatives as ever.
On the positive it would give the girls lots of rooms so letting them out wasn't such an essential. We also knew that they would take their toll on the garden however the chickens truly are a devastation force. When half a border ended up in the fish pond, virtually all of the spring bulbs failed to appear (well we have found some well pecked bulbs) and the lawn became an urban bog it seems sensible to think that the garden could also do with some rest and recuperation.
Negative wise there were two main factors - money (I jest not, credit crunch has come to Devonshire Road) and lack of DIY skills.
However, reality prevails. As mentioned in a blog way back in the mists of time when the first chickenshack arrived, it was damaged and was replaced, however we still have 70% of a chickenshack carcass to work with. So a quick visit to the local DIY store and some lovely neighbours who managed to track me down some wire and £40 later we took on the chicken run challenge!
Of course the weather was lovely, bloody chilly with the occasional rainy burst however trying to saw wood, screw it together, attach wire, all attended by Harriet, Cybil and Margot made for an interesting time (Ruby was far too aloof to be even bothered looking at the worker and Lottie, as ever, was in "Lottie Land" far, far away). Cybil seems to think she can help by nestling down in the tool box and crapping all over the tools! Harriet additionally helped by knocking my mug of tea over into the nails......... swearing ensued as you can imagine.
Lottie gets into the extended home
Architectural log feature and Margot's bum