Thursday, 1 April 2010

Chicken updates

So, here's where we are with the numerous flocks.

Pogo and Siouxsie  
Previously: Pogo was lame; she and Siouxsie came to stay in our garden while we established whether anything could be done. Took longer than expected, but she recovered enough to use her leg, however she will always be lame.  Time to re-establish them into the DorkingX flock.  Decided to swap them with the 3 other DorkingX girls on the allotment, so that Pogo could learn to use the ladder before we added the other girls back in.
They are doing well.  Pogo seems to be managing the ladder by partially flying up and down.

Mrs Flint, Norman, and NotNorman
Previously: Came to stay while Pogo and Siouxsie went back to the allotment.  Mrs F picks on Norman and excavates the nest box completely.  Norman behaving very strangely, biting me.
I've got to the bottom of Norman's behaviour.   SHe seems to have real trouble laying, can't settle in the nestbox.   Today, Norman tried to escape again, and when I put her back, she bit me again. Hard enough to leave a bruise.  When I put her back in the run, she obviously wanted to go and lay in the nestbox, but it was occupied by NotNorman.   She escaped again.   I could see that the stress is caused by her wanting to lay, and needing to do so in peace.  Beause she was in quite a state, I picked her up and popped her into the Big Girl's nestbox, and shut the door.    I checked every ten minutes (setting the kitchen timer), and each time I looked in she was nestled down. if I put my hand in, it got bitten.   

Thirty minutes later, she was still in there, and Milly wanted to lay.  I distracted Milly with grapes - and wormed the big girls while I was at it - but then I decided I'd have to move Norm.   By this time she'd laid her egg, and she didn't bite me when I put my hand in.

DH is making a separate nest box as I type, so that there will be three in the coop when they go back; this one will be set away from the other two, and hopefully everyone will manage.

I very much wanted to take them back to the allotment tomorrow night, but the weather over the next few days is predicted to be foul.  I don't think foul weather is conducive to good chicken introductions, as the hens don't have the distraction of ranging about. They just sit in or under the coop getting crabby. 

Big Girls
The big girls don't seem to have noticed tha Jasmine has gone.  Milly has been dustbathing with Daisy a lot, so maybe there has been a change there.    I'm torn between getting two new girls soon (I'd hatch some TNNs I think), bringing my garden total to 6,   or waiting until we have another vacancy.  Hen keeping is so addictive.

Roo, Mrs Roo, Mrs Roo Too
Continue to be a lovely little flock.  Mrs Roo hasn't started laying yet, although I am convinced she must be laying and we just haven't found the eggs.  I'm going to have a thorough look when I go to the allotment next.

Roo is treading both girls. 

Mrs Roo Too lays regularly.   We had seven of her eggs in the Incy but, after a week, candling showed they weren't fertile.   We've now got another batch in there, let's hope these are OK.

Are gorgeous, and getting much more adventurous.  We've put some soil in their pen so they can scratch about, and they jump on and off the lttle logs that are in there.  They are much, much bolder now.

1 comment:

  1. Glad to hear that Pogo is doing well. Norman is a pill. Sounds like they all keep you very busy.