Thursday, 28 March 2013


The weather has been so cold that the grass isn't really growing.  We moved the Girls off the pampas area a while ago, and the grass hasn't recovered.  Meanwhile, the grass patch in front of their run, where the fence now is, has been "wrecked". 

Yesterday I was looking at this out of the bedroom window, and decided that I'd move the Girls back on to the Pampas until the weather gets warm enough for the grass to start regenerating.   So, I went out and started to move the netting. Tilda was under the Pampas, minding her own business.

The Girls, of course, escaped all over the garden. I left them to it.  With the others on the loose,  I did go and get Tilda. I popped her in the run so she could have a dustbath without the others gathering outside.  As it happens, she just sat in the dustbath and made no attempt to bathe.

It took a while to move everything.   I then got a lawn rake, and raked up the bits of dead garden and chicken poo,  and this made everything look better.   Custard got very excited and decided she just had to excavate the big shoe thing I was raking into.

When I was ready for the Girls to come back into the netted area, I got some mealworms to tempt them with.   They came running from all corners.   I popped some mealworms in the Run with Tilda, and Roobarb slipped in as well.  I went to shoo Roobarb out, and then decided against it.  I've rarely seen Roobarb peck anyone, and I thought Tilda might like her company.

Outside the Run, I put the lid back on the mealworms,  put it down, and then turned back.   Tilda was lying on her side in the dustbath, trying to bury her head.  

I was so shocked.

I sprang into action, rescued her, and took her back to the house.  I couldn't see any signs of damage, but she did panic when I went near one side of her head.  I offered her mealworms - she ignoed them. Grapes.  Cucumber. She ignored it all.  

I gave her a couple of drops of Nutridrops.    Over the next hour she recovered,  and by the evening she was chatting away to us as if nothing had happened, and was tucking in to her peckablock.  She even managed some mealworms.

This morning she's fine. I've put her outside the back door so she can sit in the sun. She can also get down the side of the house which is sheltered. Fortunately, she doesn't tend to wander very far, so we don't really have to net her in. 

So. I learned a lesson yesterday.   I wasn't wrong to let Roobarb stay in with Tilda (although I won't do that again, of course); my mistake was not standing and watching to make sure nothing untoward happened.

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