Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Moulting madness

Around 10 of the Allotmenteers are moulting.  They are all looking very dishevelled and very sorry for themselves.  I've been giving them extra protein each time I go down to see them.     The egg laying is down 1 or 2 eggs a day, not surprising given just how man of them are busy losing their feathers or growing new ones.

At home,  3 of the 5 are moulting.  Fleur, who decided to drop most of her feathers at once, is at last showing regrowth.    Poppy, who I thought had finished,  has suddently started moulting on the top of her head.   Sasha has just started moulting, and is losing her tail feathers and her saddle feathers.     Gloria and Fay are currently not moulting - as far as I can tell.

Today Fleur astounded me by trying to jump on my arm.  Well, she wasn't really trying to jump on my arm... what she was actually trying to do was imitate the three girls who fly up (landing on my outstretched arm) and get rewarded with a treat.  I've tried to train Fleur to do it, but she just doesn't understand.  If I try and stand her on my arm (which is how I taught Sasha),  she panics.

But today,  her feet left the ground and her wings flapped, as she jumped in the air.  She had no concept of actually aiming for my arm, she had no idea what she was doing really.   I gave her a treat each time she did it.     Whenher feathers are through, and she's not feeling so uncomfortable, I might try training her again.

The Youngsters are having none of it. Ping just about comes and eats out of my hand,  but that's it.     Even Bertie has stopped flying up when asked,  although I'm hoping this is because he's got some new feather growth coming through.    

I've started adding layers pellets to their feed today.  Not a huge amount, I'm not in a rush to get them switched over.  I emptied out their feeder and replaced it with fresh feed, and thought I@d just mix in some layers while I was at it.

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