I honestly couldn’t imagine having chickens free ranging in my yard if I didn’t have the Chicken Herder. The girls are always testing boundaries, much like a young dog. They go where they know they aren’t supposed to, and even after being chased away, they simply wait and do it again.
The Chicken Herder and I have trained and trialed in herding over the past couple of years. But, in the past few months our training has taken a nose dive and my little Chicken Herder has lost some of her confidence. So, I thought herding the chickens might be a good way to get her confidence back, and possibly help with chicken chores. I honestly had no idea how much I would come to depend on her!
I like to let the girls free range whenever I’m home, being either outside with them or on the other side of a warm window watching them. Their actions are fairly predictable, but every now and then a few of them will try and break out from the temporary fencing I have up. My whole yard is fenced (which they really can’t get past), but I like to keep them contained in a smaller area, so I can see them all. They have plenty of room, but for a few of them the challenge of going beyond what I have given them is just too tempting.
Enter the Chicken Herder. She now knows her job, and the chickens know that. It’s to the point where all I have to do is call for the Chicken Herder and the chickens flee the crime scene, pronto! My once unsure Chicken Herder then struts her stuff around like she knows just how valuable she is when it comes to keeping chickens in line.
There are still some maneuvers the Chicken Herder and I have yet to master, but we’ll get there. All in due time. I learned early on that herding is a journey—a very long and sometimes trying journey—but one I would do over and over again with my little Chicken Herder. She is truly a treasure beyond measure.