Just call us "Cluck Med: Vacation Paradise for Poultry"
Just as mysteriously as she showed up, the chicken (aka "The Big Ging" or "Ginger") went away some time on Sunday while we were away all day visiting family not far away. She was wandering the garden all day on Saturday, but by Monday there was no trace of her in the garden. I haven't seen her since.
In total, the chicken stayed here for about 10 days eating lots of bugs, taking naps in the shade (even if it was only a few feet away from a cat), dusting herself in the dirt of the strawberry patch, and preening her feathers to make them look nice and glossy. She gained enough weight over that time period that she looked really healthy.
I could tell by Saturday that she was getting bored with the offerings here. Even though I put out chicken scratch (a mixture of cracked corn, wheat, oats and millet) for her everyday, she wasn't impressed and didn't like it. She would pick around the corn and leave the corn on the ground for other critters. I tried giving her shelled sunflower seeds. She liked them at first but then went back to foraging for bugs. By Saturday, she was wandering around the house to the front garden and foraging there. Apparently, she had gleaned all she could from the larger back garden.
The good news is that even though when she showed up she had diarrhea, after a few days here she was getting healthy and no longer having digestive problems. Once she started into marathon preening sessions while laying in the shade, I knew she was on her way to being a happier and healthier chicken.
She stayed here about as long as someone stays at a resort spa--relaxing and detoxing from real life. Maybe she was on vacation and we were her "resort spa".
Just call us "Cluck Med".
P.S. Despite my joviality in the above post, I'm sad she's moved on. I will admit I shed some tears yesterday when I didn't have a chicken to entertain me as I sat in my chaise lounge getting my outdoor R&R. I hope we get another "guest" soon.
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