Our Light Sussex chickens, who started hatching on May 10, 2012, are 20 weeks old today. They haven't laid any eggs yet, but every morning we hope to find the first egg. I can't wait for them to start laying so we can have our own eggs from our own chickens again!
I've not been brave enough to let the chickens have free range of the property until just recently, because our garden is not fenced. I also hesitate to let them truly free range when someone is not going to be home all day long, as the last batch of chickens we had (Delawares) was massacred by free-roaming dogs when we left for less than 2 hours. :( So, that limits the days I can let them out and feel good about it.
The first time I left the door open so the Light Sussex chickens could come outside, they didn't venture far from the door. In fact, they spent most of the time craning their necks out the door, inspecting the setup, I suppose.
Last weekend we let them out to run around, which they did freely, and the kids reported to me that they were having a bug party in the grass. Apparently they were frolicking. I was inside working on beets and didn't make it out to take pictures. (Sorry!) Later in the day, I walked out of the house to hear the chickens carrying on as if they were being attacked. I hurried out to the coop, where they were all hiding, and on the way I saw a stray kitty's ears and the top of his head peering over the grass.
My chickens are.....well....chicken.