Has Nancy Gone Broody?

Hi there reader, low and behold as I looked out of the window down into the garden this morning, there she was, I called to her with the same sort of tone you would use after loosing a friend at a festival , ‘ Nancy!!! , there you are ‘. It was great to her well, if a little hungry.  What struck me straight away as I went out into the garden, although Nancy had returned there was no sight of any other bird, all seven were hiding, as it turned out not so much hiding, just away from Nancy, it really seemed as if she were being ignored by the others, the three newbies were down in the ginger bush,  with Nellie, the shaver most pecked by Nancy, and the other three were down in the bamboo by the edge of the creek, both groups had that look about them, you when you come into a room and the conversation stops, and everybodies pretending to just be talking about the weather.

There they were the two factions of hens in their hides, discussing Nancy, ‘ I see she’s back then! ‘ , ‘ I thought we’d seen last last of her ‘ , maybe the chicks were consouling Nellie, ‘ I know, she pecks us too, it’s not very nice, hmm ‘.  Well all their ignoring her payed off, I noticed she was starting to squeeze her way through the bamboo fence again, into Mani’s garden, so I watched her, unfortunately I had to go the post office, early closing Saturday, by the time I had wrapped the parcel, she had disappeared from sight, I look in the neighbours garden, racing her last movements, no sign. So I think she has gone broody and is laying in secret somewhere nearby, sitting patiently for eggs that will never hatch, bless her.

A Flaw in my Floor

Hi there reader, well I was thinking that all of the work being carried out in the back yard was upsetting the hens, as we have been down an egg or two each day, not so. As it happens the floor I made, from a single pallet, and hinged the bottom front of the coop to enable me to slide the floor in and out for easy cleaning, however what I didn’t think of, is not all eggs are the same size, and what had occurred was two eggs had infact slipped through the gaps, they can only of been there for 3 days at the most, because we got all the eggs on the previous days, still I gave them the floating test, to be doubly sure, so I think some adjustments will ahve to be made to the floor.

On another subject, is there anyone out there who has suggestions for hen bullying, one of the girls is constantly picked on by the others, mainly one bird ofcourse starts it then the others join in, Nancy is the Boss of the run, and today she had poor Nellie cornered against the fence, pecking at her furiously, which then made Daphne and Gloria join the afray, Nellie was helpless, liked a tired boxer caught it the corner with Mike Tyson bashing ten bells out of you, not very pleasant to watch either i might add, so I picked up a bit of bamboo, and gave Nancy a whack across the arse, she ran into the coop, an didn’t come back out til i’d gone inside, I know it’s nature’s way the pecking order and all that, but are there any ways to reduce it without seperating them?

Chicken Colditz

Half way stage of camp Tenko

 

Half way stage of camp Tenko

chicks-n-chickens-012

I’ve had it with retrieving the hens from next door’s gardens, and I’m sure, although they haven’t said anything, the neighbours are fed up of chickens’ droppings on their driveway. So today I started to build a big run, using bamboo, I suppose it’s more chicken Tenko, for those of you familiar with the BBC.

Sooner or later the civil engineers are arriving at my property to carry out some major works on the sewerage pipes at the back of the house, and they are to replace the old pipe that runs across the creek, so the girls would have had to be penned in then, heavy machinery about and big holes.

The larger of the new chicks, who I think is ready for a bigger space, she started clucking today, when she was surprised by my hand reaching in to change the water, also she can be quiet rough with the much smaller chicks, as she scratches at the ground, if one of the little ones are near her feet, they invariably get flicked out the back, in a rather unceremonious fashion.

So if I work on the run tomorrow, being a Sunday,…????, we’ll see, I could have it finished, then Maria can get out and mix it with the big girls, If she’ll mix with non pedigree birds that is, all in all it’s not the ideal I had in mind of the hens roaming around the garden happy to stay put, but this way they still have loads of garden to use, 250sq ft, and we can still let them out into the rest of the garden when we are at home.

Also this should I estimate give me about 5 hours week back, and they will all have to lay inside the run, no more searching for secret nests, although that was great when I did finally find it full of eggs, 9 in total, good day.

Absent without Leave

Hi all, I’ve reached that stage, I am finding it hard to keep this going, I have lots to say about all sorts of other topics, but I’m trying to stick to the topic, chickens and related stuff. Someone asks me yesterday if were any famous chickens, I could only think of Fog horn Leghorn the crazy rooster from the cartoons.

Also i have been trying to get a more technical with this and another blog site, where i can post pics etc, but nothing seems to be working, I think that’s what slowed me down on the writing front,

The girls are all behaving themselves lately, I have improved the fences so they can’t get out so easily, however, I have alot of very tall bamboo in the garden, left from a previous dweller, bloody bamboo, cuts out alot of light from the garden, but worse, it sucks up all the water in the ground, and the garden is fair cracking up, the ground is spliting badly, had another go at it yesterday, but unless you know my garden you wouldn’t know that i cut down any. It’s been useful to build fences, but I’d rather it wasn’t there, because it’s just an ongoing job, unless i use some form of chemical warfare, which i don’t want to use, i rather go mano o mano, hand to hand combat. It does stop the girls going absent without leave.

So if any one reading this who lives in Auckland and wants loads of bamboo, come on over bring a trailer.