Saturday, 11 December 2010

Little princess

Lily laid an egg yesterday, the first one in weeks.  I didn't see it until I opened the cupboard this morning,  as I've been leaving early every day to go to Oxford and not getting back until the chooks are tucked up for the night.

So today was the first time in nearly a week that I saw the girls properly. (I do sometimes see one or two of them, when I am pouring boiling water on their frozen glugs in the dark).

Lily looked stunning.  She's persil white and, for the first time in ages she has a full tail. That too is sparkling white, and erect, just as a the tail of a leghorn hybrid should be.  Her knickers are pristine,  and her comb - which was pink while she was moulting - is turning a shade of lipstick red.  She looks like a different girl.

I raked out the run today and put Stalosan down.  I "normally" do this once a week, but with one thing and another it's been several weeks. There was a lot of debris to be removed - feathers,  brussels sprouts,  swede skins,  dead corncob husks...  Drinkers were removed, scrubbed, and refilled.   I haven't refilled the feeders yet, I want them to finishe up what's in there as I've lost track of which are the freshest ones.

I wasn't sure whether grass continues to grow - albeit slowly - in winter, or whether it just stops.   In case it does grow a bit, I've reclaimed a large patch so that it can recover,  and I've given the girls the Pampas bed in exchange.   They were very excited, and have been rooking about and dustbathing non stop.    

I also spent some time trying to get the Veg Bed's excavated soil back in to it.  I'm on to a loser here because everytime I do this, the Girls get very excited and rook through it again.   I think I'll have to fence them off the Veg bed soon.

Finally, I raked up the leaves.  Lily then started to do something rather strange. So strange that I did a double take, and then I stopped my raking to watch her to see if I imagined it.

She came out of the Run and started inspecting leaves.  Not the leaves I'd been raking, leaves that have been on the grass for some time.  She picked up a leaf, then twisted her neck around, leaf in beak, and put it on her back, down towards her tail.  Then another one.  Then a bit of pampas grass.  The leaves just fell off, but she carried on doing it. Walking round that patch of grass, inspecting leaves, finding one she liked, and then putting it on her back.

Any ideas?


  1. glad princess is laying again, mine too had stopped laying but at least two of them have just started to lay again even though it is only every other day, great though.

  2. Some of my girls do that, just after they have laid an egg...I have wondered if it is some remnant behaviour from when they covered over their eggs to protect them and keep them warm?

    Anyway, not unusual behaviour , you will be pleased to read :-)