They are both gorgeous girls, really lovely personalities, and very friendly. Poppy, who is half Australorp and half Welsh black, is my most favourite, favourite hen. She's clever, gorgeous, and happy to be handled (within reason). Lotti is an exchequer leghorn and is a lunatic. She's funny, fast, stunning to look at, and happy to be handled, most of the time. Both are 2 years old, and are hatchmates.
Lotti is very light, and can get over fencing even though her wing has been clipped. She hasn't worked out how to get back in the same way though. Once she has seen Poppy get over something, she follows.
Poppy is very heavy. Despite this she manages to get over my extra high fencing. Shes also clever enough to be able to get back over it she wants to. She can spot a weakness in the fencing, wherever it is. She is a master of escape.
Af first, they were just escaping once or twice a day. They just ran around the bit of the garden that we laughingly call the "lawn".
As they came back in to lay, they started escaping more frequently, until they became impossible to contain. They started digging up some of the wild flower borders. They stand by the french windows looking in, and pooing where they stand. Which, coincidentally, is where we stand when we step outside.
It had got to the stage where it ws just not worth putting them back in. Until Lotti managed to breach the other fence wiich separates the garden from the gates. Not only that, but she managed to find the catgap in the bottom corner near the gate, and escaped into the driveway.
So. I invested in another 21metres of extra high fencing, and we now have a double row. In between is a gap g about a foot, which is no-hens land. The idea is that even if they get over the first row, they won't get over both rows in one go; and once in no hens land, they won't be able to get the angle of launch to get over the 2nd row.
Poppy has found herself in no hens land 4 times since the 2nd row went up. It's been up about 3 hours.
I'm hoping she'll get fed up of it, and stop leaping the netting.
I'm not convinced she will, but at least she won't come to any harm.