Friday, 7 August 2015

Snapped

At last, Poppy has snapped out of her broodiness.

Some hens are more prone to broodiness than others. Some breeds, Wyandottes for example, are known as being particularly broody, but it still comes down to the individuals.

Poppy is a super-broody.  Every year she goes broody at least once.  She doesn't just do the 3 weeks that a broody normally does,  she sticks like glue for 7 or 8 weeks.  In the past we've tried various methods of "breaking" her out of her broodiness, and they've all backfired.  They seem to re-set the clock, and so we've learned to just let her get on with it.

She was starting to go broody at the time of hte fox attack, when the eggs had been in the incubator for a week or so.  The fox attack temporarily suspended her broodiness.  We thought that the introduction of Gloria might stop it, but it didn't. 3 weeks ish after Gloriana joined the Garden,  Poppy went fully broody.

In the last week or so she's been off the nest box more than once a day,  and she has been hurling herselves at the chicks in a bit of a rage.    Poppy was around most of yesterday,  and came out of the est box at first light this morning.  I know this because she was complaining bitterly about the run being shut. (Beofre the fox attack, the pop hole opened at 4.30 in the morning to let them all out to free range).

Poppy is particularly angry about the invasion of new chickens.  

Glory has seen the chicks grow (wwell, OK, she's seen one set of chicks grow plus the sneaking in of two new ones) and is only bothered by them when they come close to their partition netting.  Poppy seems to think she went to bed one night and came down in the morning to find 4 usurpers, eating her grass, and being talked to by her pet human.

Now that we know it's possible to introduce chicks to each other without bloodshed,  we'll definitely let Poppy hatch some of her own next year, and they can then join with any that we hatch in the incubator.  

Assuming, of course, that the timings collide.



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