Monday, 11 April 2011

New ladies in the house

So, if you read the post about Phoebe doing a runner (here) you'll know that Rachael has been on her own for a little while now.

She's been quite lonely, and very noisy, husband has been worried about the neighbours (not that anyone has complained and she's still quieter than the seagulls) so we thought we'd try and find her a friend.

Holly (step-daughter) has been volunteering at the local RSPCA as part of her Animal Management course and every Sunday she's been coming back with stories of the different animals in their care.  A couple of weeks ago she came back telling me about some "white with black bits" chickens that had arrived there (Light Sussex to you and me) so on Friday I dragged husband to the centre to see what they had.

Well, there were some Light Sussex hens with a cockerel and a random speckledly hen that all had to go as a group, we couldn't have them obviously as cockerels are a no-no and there were just too many of them.

They did also have 3 brown strays, they appeared in someone's garden overnight and hadn't been reported as missing so werw available for re-homing.  We didn't really want to have 3 new hens (well husband didn't anyway) but the centre wouldn't let them go separately so we decided to re-home them.

On Sunday we had our "home check" to make sure our garden was big enough and suitable enough for the three ladies and this morning Son and I went to pick them up.

We got back home with the three hens in their two boxes, we hadn't peeked as we didn't want to disturb them.  Son and I let them into the (currently empty) duck house and run but noticed something a little weird - one of them was a lot larger than the others and a sort of "speckledy" colour - the centre had only gone and picked up the wrong chicken!

So we tried calling the centre but the line was either engaged or was not answered, so we packed the poor speckledy hen back into her box, jumped back into the car and set off back to the centre - it's only ten minutes drive so not a problem.

When we arrived, Chris the "chicken man" was out looking for the "missing" chicken - he soon realised what had happened, two members of staff went to change it over for the correct hen, who was hiding from them laying her egg.  They packed her up and we took her home.

The three (correct) new ladies are now quite at home in their temporary house and Rachael has been talking to them all day - quietly.

The only incident we had was that one laid an egg and another ate it - I'm hoping this is just a one off and was accidentally broken.  I had given them some crushed oyster shell and asked Andy from Chicken Street for some advice, hopefully it won't happen again.

The ladies are currently unnamed but they are likely to be more characters from Friends - I'm sure the children will decide on some names for them soon.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

The countdown begins.....again!

So, it's been a little while since my last post.  Since then, I've had these little ones hatch

Got three little friends for Duckie

And watched them all get a little bit bigger (actually quite a lot bigger)

The Fuzzbutts

And realised quite how much mess little ducklings can make - it's been a bit of a learning curve but I think I've sussed it now

But today these arrived...

A Lucky Dip selection of ducks eggs from my lovely friend Sara (also known as @mumsmuddyducks on Twitter), so the incubator is on gearing up for a minimum of 28 days.

They are a lucky dip and some could be Muscovy crosses, so they could take 35 days to hatch - how will I cope with the anticipation?!

So from tomorrow, the countdown begins :)