Thursday, September 22, 2011

how to feed chickens & alienate neighbors

Open the back door and step outside.  Announce yourself to the birds!  I call them like this:  "bawk bawk bawk bawk!"  Be a little loud about it - some of the chickens really like the shade in the back corner of the yard, and you need to get their attention too.

The chickens will come running. Be sure you have treats. There are lots of things chickens like that you might have around the house, like
  • stale bread, torn into bits
  • crumbs from the bottom of a bag of tortilla chips
  • vegetable scraps*
  • oats
  • cereal
  • bird seed, if you're in to that sort of thing
  • rice cakes**
  • apparently, yogurt.  I wouldn't recommend tossing yogurt at yo birds - although this is supposed to be about alienating your neighbors, so go ahead. Glob it.
  • Toes painted with red nail polish

Chickens love conversation as much as the next domesticated fowl. Advise them about their tail feathers (i.e., to shake them) and how to get the worm (early). Not being certain that chickens speak English, your best bet may be the noisy "bawk bawk bawk bawk" discussed earlier.

Wear closed-toe shoes if you prefer to protect your red toenails.

*Side note: Sort through leftover salad to make absolute certain that there aren't any stray pieces of chicken hiding beneath the tomatoes. Otherwise, you will watch in horror while your chickens turn into cannibals and eat the very flesh of their own kind. They will be enthusiastic about it, and you will not quite feel the same about chickens after.  The guilt, though, will eventually subside. Not that I would know from personal experience. What?

**Now you can get rid of your rice cakes honorably without admitting you were never going to eat them. I was going to eat mine, but there are chickens who are hungry in Africa. How could I eat rice cakes when there are hungry chickens in Africa?

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