Sunday, March 12, 2006

The big day dawns and the newbies arrive.

Eggs - Total to date: 293 - Day 130

KoKKo 97 (86grms) 29.11.2005 Personal best weight
Adelaide 98 (80grms) 26.02.2006 Personal best weight
Ginger 98 (78grms) 22.2.2006 Personal best weight

I was up really early and got the bread going and it was in the cupboard rising before 8.30am.

It was so cold and frosty this morning that the girl’s drinking water was frozen inside their house!

They were fine when I went in there to see them, Adelaide and KoKKo had laid eggs, and they tucked into their breakfast when I took it in.

It looks like they had roosted on one of the shelves in there by the look of the row of poo! And I went to all that trouble to make a house for them too! At least they laid their egg in the right place.

I felt sorry for them being in there so I moved them back into the pen, and left the Eglu door open for Ginger in case she felt the urge to lay an egg. After much huffing and puffing and making a big song and dance about having to walk around the back of the Eglu now that I had moved it, she went in and happily clucked away – I gave up waiting after 10 minutes of watching and waiting.

The girls trooped around the pen inspecting everything, and making a bit of a fuss when they could not get into the run to inspect they new white stuff inside. They were soon happily tucking into their food and drink and greens, and scratching away in the new wood chip, to get down to the soil for worms!

And there I left them happily playing whilst I got on with rest of the jobs for today.

I had a lovely email from the lady whose bantams I have adopted and she was heartbroken at having to part with them, which made me feel so very sad – almost guilty at having them. But at least she and her family can log on any time and see them regularly posted on here.

At last they arrived – we had just finished lunch – when the door bell went.

It was love at first sight – three tiny weeny little fluff balls. I just wanted to cuddle them for ever, but I gently lifted the first two out and had a little cuddle and stroked and talked to them, and the third, the buff (ginger) one, who was at the back, decided she would walk in on her own – which she did.

I was amazed at how they just snuggled up and dust bathed in the sunshine, as happy as anything. They squeezed their little eyes closed and fluffed up their feathers and rolled on their sides, and over onto their other side – like fluffy little dogs rolling around. The peanut feeders were ready and waiting for them with layers pellets and water, and I put them both lower down for them.

Adelaide took exception to them eating I think, despite the fact that I had given them a new tin of sweet corn in a dish to eat. As I walked back indoors she started shouting, and when I went back into the pen and spoke to her she stopped, and then when I walked back out she shouted. And so in the end I put the triplets back into their accommodation with some treats, and they are settled down and quiet again now.

First thing I will put them back into the pen and she can shout as much as she likes until she gets used to the new girls. But as it was a wonderfully sunny Sunday, I thought it best not to leave her making a fuss.

I am just off to check on all of the girls, and relax, before going back later at dusk to make sure that they are all tucked up in bed.

6pm and all is quiet on the chicken front. The banties had roosted on the new broom handle that I had installed, and were snuggled up and happy dozing - and it looked so natural.

I was tempted to leave them there as they looked so comfortable - but I lifted them up and gently put them into the eglu house and they all squished in together in the nest box.

Whilst I am so happy to have adopted them, I feel so very much for the lovely family who have had to give them up. By posting regularly on my blog about them, as well as all the other things I type about, I hope that they can log on and see them happy and settled 'on holiday' in Norfolk.

As I live in a farming area with poultry farms, arable farm, and pig farms, keeping chickens in a garden is no big deal - compared to the thousands of all the chickens, ducks, turkeys etc around here.


  1. Great news re your new bantams looking forward to hearing their names!
    Glad the 3 original hens are OK after their move-just wondered isn't tinned sweetcorn packed in salt water so I suppose you rinse it like I do for myself?
    Do you feed the hens dried mixed corn as well as all the other foods you've mentioned?
    Will you be buying another Eglu for your increased flock?

  2. The tinned sweetcorn is a rare meal now - once in a blue moon and yes it is washed.

    They get a small amount of dried mixed wheat and corn last thing at night, which they digest slowly and keeps them warm at night.

    There is plenty of room in the Eglu for all of them. I have bought a run extention though - which is taller and adds another metre. They are only in the run from dusk till dawn - as an additional protection against any foxes - although we have never seen or heard of one around here, I would rather not take the risk.

    If for any reason the girls do not settle into a flock - which is unlikely - I will definitely buy another eglu

    Nice to hear from you Jean

  3. When we used to keep chickens (we had about 100....all the Sussex breeds in their "families")...we used to introduce new hens into the run with all the others at night. By morning they seemed to have worked out the pecking order and there was no trouble. None ever got hurt doing this!
    We had to give the chicked=ns up as my husband was too ill to do them anymore....but we still miss them.

  4. I can imagine how much you miss then, as I would feel the same.

    A number of people have made the same suggestion, so I shall do that either tomorrow night or the night after.

    Just want the banties to settle down a bit first. They do seem very content though.

  5. The banties look fantastic! I will be up and posting very soon - don't know where the time has gone these last couple of weeks. I did get to the lottie yesterday (Saturday) though. Today has been thick snow and I've been tidying at home to make the most of the time.
    All the best, Mike

  6. Anonymous1:07 am

    They are lovely!! I see what you mean about cuddling them! I keep thinking about that film 'Tess'(Tess of the D'Urbervilles), when Tess goes to the big house and takes the old blind lady's hens up to her to be fussed, then Tess has to whistle to the Canaries! Not that I'm comparing you to the old blind lady!! (She could NEVER acomplish in a year what you do in a day!)
    I remember my grandad telling me that the hens needed grit to help harden their shells, I spent hours collecting 'grit' for them and was just putting it through the netting when grandad caught me, in his wonderful Oxford 'Burr' he told me that I'd got the 'wrong' grit! They were actually pea gravel sized pebbles!Then there was the mud 'cakes' I used to make for he couldn't wait to see me go home!!

    Re- the Blog... don't know what I've done but, can't get back to it and log in, I'd even written my first days' bloggin'! Perserverance! it at first you don't succeed,try another million times!

    Nite, nite,


  7. Bovey Belle11:01 am

    What gorgeous fluffy girls you have Lottie - especially the lavender one. You'll have great fun thinking of names for them. I'm sure their old owner will be able to follow their new adventures on here, so not quite the same as losing them entirely.

    Sandie - Thomas Hardy's Tess is my favourite film and a definite "Desert Island Discs" book (though I'd be greedy, and go for the complete works of TH . . .)

  8. A message for lilymarlene -have added your blog to my favourites ie unable to add comments on your blog as not a member


Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment - it is very much appreciated. Your comment will appear after moderation.