November 20, 2016

Fencing Fun

Ok, so maybe fun isn't the right word, but last weekend was certainly full of fencing work.  

I worked every evening after school on driving in t-posts to create the perimeter for the fence.  If you've never driven in a t-post, you have to use this driver that acts like a big hammer.  Because our posts were 7-foot tall I had to do it on a ladder, too, which added an extra layer of fun, trying to stay balanced while I pounded and pounded and pounded... at least the ground was soft due to a bit of rain.  After days of working, with throbbing elbows, I finally got the last post in.

Sunday morning, my mother-in-law's generous companion, Ron Brown, offered to come help me put the actual fencing up.  We started in the cool morning before any of the boys were even awake.  Using the tractor to stretch the 2x4 welded wire taunt, I held it in place and Ron twisted the clips to hold the fencing to the posts.

As the sun came out and warmed the day mid-morning, Josh and Oliver appeared to help us too.

Oliver was over-the-moon to get the "complicated and hard" job of driving the tractor (as he later described it to his grandmother).

By midday we had about 2/3 of the fence up!

The small hill going up to the workshop provided a bit of a challenge.  We had to dig out the ground so the fence could run straighter and meet the ground properly.  Our plan is to put a small gate between the white post and the wall of the workshop so that we can go in and out with feed bags, etc.

The project wrapped up by mid-afternoon and now we have a nearly complete fenced chicken yard for the girls to free range when we can't be out there watching them.  All that's left is to work in the gates once they arrive.  There will be a small one for us and a larger one that can be driven through.

It eases my mind so to know that the chickens aren't so exposed to predators anymore.  That last attack we traumatic, finding pieces of birds all over the yard.  True, something could scale the fence or dig under it, but it will at least minimize the kind of blast attack we've had where the coyotes run down from the railroad tracks and across the yard, grabbing chickens as they go.  

Next step in our never-ending coop construction is an automated chicken door that will use a computer program to open an hour after sunrise, letting the chickens into our new chicken yard, then close an hour after sunset, locking them safe in the henhouse...

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