Of course my first winter keeping chickens would be one of the hardest. It's been unusually cold what with the Polar Vortex and all. And while we haven't had many snow storms the ones we have had were decent snowfalls. I've never been a winter person. I'm not into winter sports and really don't enjoy shoveling or being cold. Leave it to the Ladies to try to change my opinion of winter. I've made a few new winter discoveries while I tend to the Ladies.
Three Ladies in a nest box stay quite toasty
Early morning seems warmer than the rest of the day. I'm usually out by 7AM at the latest. At first I worried that I was going to be unbearable cold during my chores, but whether it truly is warmer or not - I feel warmer. Maybe my body just hasn't woken up enough to be cold. Or maybe it's that usually the wind hasn't turned on for the day. Whatever the reason, it was a pleasant surprise to me. I no longer dread going out in the morning cold.
Good morning Ladies!
The Ladies really do not care if it's cold. I know they schooled me on that earlier, but I still doubt them sometimes so it's helpful for them to remind me. No matter how cold it is, they come out to see me first thing in the morning. Later in the day if it's still really cold only some of them come out but I hear the others from inside the coop, reporting in that all is fine. And in case I still don't believe them, all I have to do is pick one up and tuck my fingers under her feathers and it's instant warmth - definitely better than my gloves. Don't get me wrong - I think they are anxious for spring just like the rest of us. They want out of their run to scratch around in the grass. They will come out in the snow but seem dismayed that there is no grass to eat.
Where's the grass?
This one I really can't explain. Somehow the Ladies have made me more of a winter person. Maybe they have some magic power as they also made me more of a morning person. These days I don't mind going out to shovel. I almost always start by shoveling a path to the coop - just to check in. But then the driveway gets done! And all of a sudden I'm noticing the beauty of a snowfall instead of complaining about it. I've started snowshoeing (no we can't claim the Ladies had anything to do with that) and I'm enjoying it. Somehow taking care of the Ladies has made me more aware and appreciative of nature. I notice things I wasn't slowing down enough to notice before. A good snowfall makes some pretty neat natural art!