Saturday, 2 October 2010

Where are we now

Sorry for the long gap.   I work on an ad hoc conultancy basis, and the work I do is very Autumn and Spring focussed.  It's been a busy month, and I haven't had much time for anything other than work.

Luckily for me, I work from home; this means I can coninue to keep an eye on the Girls,  and squeeze in preserving stuff in between.

The integration continues.

Everyone goes to bed, just a few minor squabbles.   Roobard, 'Tilda and Florence are consigned to the nestbox, with Florence sitting on the separator between the nest box and roosting bars;  Custard (who has been in-lay for some time now) is allowed on the roosting bars.

The running away and chasing continues during the day, but more often than not everyone gets on with it, as long as the Littlees keep themselves to themselves.  

Roobarb (the Welsh Black egg that was laid en route when we were bringing Rose and Ruby from Wales to their new home) is just amazing, but completely scared of her own shadow. At treat time, she grabs a treea then runs off into a quiet corner. It takes her forever to eat it, and sometimes she picks it up and streaks across the garden with it. By this time, the others have finished scoffing, and chase her.  If only she kept quiet and got on with eating it, she'd be fine!

I've seen Custard (Sasso) peck 'Tilda (Sasso, disabled) on the top of the head, and that really did make me sad.

I sometimes wish I'd just kept them all separate. The Littlees were a happy little flock They (presumably) had their own pecking order, but they'd grown up with it.  Anyway, it's pointless thinking about that because 2 separate flocks would mean problems with free ranging areas, especially in the winter when the grass isn't renewing itself.

I've been trying to tame the Littlees.  Custard has been much more friendly since she came in to lay. She crouches for me, and I can pick her up without too much trouble.    The other 3, especially Roobarb,  continue to be completely panic stricken.  Florence (Australorp) is so funny. She's an enormous bird but completely unaware of the fact that she's so much bigger than everyone else.  She is stunning.

The Old Girls are moulting, so I've been giving them cat food every few days. Was a bit concerned it migght bring out their aggressiveness even more, but I'm not sure that it does really.

Down on the allotment, the established flocks are moulting as well.  We'd really like to take the saddles off the 3 breeding girls, but we aren't sure what's happening with Roo treading.   I've been finding out more about trimming toes and spurs, so we might do that with Roo and then removed the Girls' saddles for the winter.

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