Step 1 upon marching into the donkey yard (or sliding in depending upon the ice conditions), throw hay immediately.
Get those four hyenas munching away so they don't get the idea to wander into the chicken coop while the door is open.
Step 2 -- open the chicken coop to let four crazy clucks out. And then clean up the mess. They are now consistently pooping on top of the nesting boxes. I finally figured out laying out a clean paper towel makes clean-up easy.
Open their small door, unplug the heat lamp, collect eggs, yup that's the drill.
All while the clucks are wandering around.
I think I've mentioned that the chickens don't care for snow so they haven't had as much free range time during the day as they were used to. So they get some roaming time while the boss lady cleans up after the pooping hyenas.
Oh yea, the clucks are big helpers, by the way.
The words, "Watch out, I'm going to step on you" can be heard every morning in the donkey barn.
Step 3 -- Now the donkey barn is clean, chickens have had time to roam, it's time to get them in the coop, so Alice can get her oats. Otherwise, the chickens descend upon her bowl and she doesn't stand a chance. What do I use to lure them in -- their morning banana, of course.
If I call "girls" in a certain tone of voice, they know it's treat time and in the mornings they have come to expect their banana. (this morning we were out, so I substituted blueberries -- Ruby Dee said "what?!"). Can you say s-p-o-i-l-e-d. In the photo above you can see them dive bombing the bowl to grab each precious morsel.
Did I mention, I need to have the hay thrown out of sight so the other donkeys don't get too intrigued with what's going on in the barn and barge in on the Alice girl. The other three DON'T need more calories.
And now it's time to gather up eggs, the oat bowl and head back to the house.
Eyeshadow and May (next door neighbors) check to see if they can have more carrots and I must remind them, no we already did that.
Bye critters... Until lunch time.