Man, I thought those baby chicks and geese would push me over the edge, but it's amazing the difference a week makes. All told, we lost 7 chicks and zero goslings, and I think we're out of the woods. No more wiping feathery bottoms for me - all the survivors can poop independently and know how to find the water and food on their own. Also, the weather is about 20 degrees warmer this week than it was last week, so they are also no longer in danger of freezing to death. The only down side is that they are much less cute and harder to catch. In about another week they will be ugly enough that we won't want to catch them at all. Then we will begin the process of "separating the cockerels from the pullets," which basically means discovering which ones are boys and putting them aside to be eaten. How do you tell the difference? Well, the boys are the ones that attack you. Believe me, once you have been attacked by a rooster you will not feel even a tiny bit of remorse about killing him.
But I am losing track of the main reason for this post. It seems that you, too, can have a chicken of your very own, and keep it inside of your house. Yes, all you non-farmers can have fresh eggs every day, all thanks to a very special new product. I'll let my friend Gail Damerow tell you all about it:
"If you bring a chicken into your house, you'll obviously need a different approach to manure management. Because chickens are difficult to housebreak, reusable plastic-lined chicken diapers have been developed in various sizes, styles, and colors for use with chickens kept as house pets, convalescing from an injury or illness, or being primped for show. An internet keyword search for "chicken diaper" will reveal numerous sources, as well as detailed instructions on how to make your own." (Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens, Damerow, 138)
Wow, that is a huge relief. It is great to know that in case I get tired of changing HUMAN diapers, I can always bring one of those ugly stinky grouchy birds into my home and change ITS diapers as well. I think the only thing worse than having a chicken in the house would be having a chicken wearing a diaper in the house. Seriously. Although, perhaps I have found a new etsy niche ... patchwork chicken diapers, anyone? Let me know, I'm sure I could whip you up a batch in no time. :)