Friday, September 11, 2015

Altering Behavior 101

What do you do when an infant is holding something dangerous or  doing something that could get them in trouble?  You offer them something enticing and slip the dangerous item away without any fuss.  If it is a troublesome behavior, you show them what good behavior could lead to.

When I returned the third rooster, Laure and I were walking back to my car from her coop, and she suddenly asked me if I had a light in my coop.  I don't.  She told me a light in her coop is on a timer which signals the chickens to come in to a safe place.  Later, it goes out but I am not sure when the radio, (tuned to NPR) goes off.  So Laure thinks not having the light to call him in, is why Sideshow Bob slept outside and also, most recently Randy Rooster.

Unfortunately, after Randy invited one of the hens to sleep in the tree with him, she decided she should try it herself.  I don't know if she is hoping he will come back or she just likes sleeping outside.

Forgetting all my wisdom about encouraging good behavior instead of punishing bad, last night I tried shaking the tree branch and spraying water from the hose, to get the hen to come down.  She just tightened her grip and then went to another unsafe branch.  The tree hen survived the night.  I wonder if she slept through the heavy rain.  Anyway, tonight I shall offer them all a bedtime snack to get the errant hen to change her behavior.

We are going to try something similar at Boxerwood.  The staff is always complaining that the play trail gets over use from kids, especially older siblings of tiny tots.  They were originally trying to come up with ways to reduce the wear by omitting some of the kids.  Now, the plan is to create something just as exciting, but for a slightly older aged child, in another area of Boxerwood.  I am going to be a part of the new creative endeavor and I am excited.


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