Spring hatching is in full swing here at the Buck ‘n Run Ranch.
I have 20 eggs on lockdown, due to hatch on Friday and 3 more to hatch on Monday. The first hatch is Crested Cream Legbars and a project I am working on. I also have a dozen olive eggers in the incubator due to hatch in a couple of weeks. While I have plenty of incubator space I don’t have space for brooding or growing out chicks. Yesterday I decided to remove some cabinets I put in the brooder house a few months ago. They were just taking up space. Because the little yellow house isn’t level (don’t tell Michael I said that), the drawers were very difficult to open. There was barely room to move with the cabinet doors open so I didn’t use those either. I decided the addition of another brooder would be a much better use of the tiny 4×8 space. I dragged the cabinets out and began plotting the brooder construction. Plotting and dreading, I might add. Every time I walked passed my 2-story ferret cage on the porch of the little yellow house, I was dismayed. Why are you taking up space and looking ugly out on the porch? Why won’t you fit through the door? Why aren’t you 3/4 inch narrower? The ferret cage brooders that worked so well for me in the screen room at the old house were now an albatross, mocking me. Then I took a really good look at the ferret cage. It was just held together with big, rusty bolts. I measured the doors and realized that if I removed them, the cage would fit through the door. I grabbed a drill and screwdrivers and went to work. Most of the bolts came out without incidence but the final two were stripped.
After a short struggle, I resorted to my least favorite option when I can’t do something by myself. I asked Michael for help. He was able to remove the bolts with a pair of vise grips and the doors were off. Unfortunately, even with the doors off, the cage would not fit through the door. As a last resort, Michael removed the shelves and angled the frame through the door. He reassembled the ferret cage in place, in the tiny brooder house. Voila’! In addition to my big brooder on the left, I now had two more on the right.
I’ll get the trays in place, along with the bumpers to keep the shavings from falling out, and I’ll be ready for my new chicks.