Jump to content

All Activity

This stream auto-updates     

  1. Today
  2. Hi all - Been a while since I've visited but glad to see the forums and fellow-minded chicken lovers still going strong. I wanted to pick your brains about something strange which happened last autumn and continued for a few months... Allow me to summarise in the briefest way possible (hopefully!). After having multiple hens over the years we are sadly down to our last. She is a Light sussex and over 4 years old now. She was always top hen, and after some initial worries about how she would cope on her own, she seems to have taken it in her stride and is now happy without having to keep all the others in check. The problems started at the beginning of autumn last year, where she started her usual moult. Before any noticeable amount of feathers began to fall, I noticed some strange behaviour. She would come close to the house at dusk looking for company, and begin to look a bit 'bemused'. She would stare up to the ceiling in a sort of panicked way, and seemed not to understand where she was. I duly carried her to her coop for a few nights, but then the behaviour started to become throughout the day as opposed to just at dusk. More panicked gazes, more gazing towards the sky, and general unawareness of what she should be doing. All very strange. Then the feathers started to fall, hundreds and hundreds! She was still eating and drinking and free-ranging, but at this point had to be carried home every night. As she became balder and balder, it was as though she couldn't behave like a chicken anymore. Any time she came out, she began to walk backwards! Feeling the need to 'duck' under imaginary objects, in-between the strange staring skywards. She stopped leaving the coop in the day and sat on her perch all day and night. She would eat and drink ravenously if we held the food and water up to her, on her perch. I can only think she stayed on her perch as she was too concerned about walking, which she could only now manage backwards. I had no idea what to 'google' but stumbled upon a protein-deficiency in hens during the moult, and so began to hand-feed her growers pellets, tinned tuna, scrambled egg, anything we could think of. She ate and ate but seemed to get no better. This went on for at least a month if not 2 during the winter! Finally her feathers began to grow back (thankfully, as she was so bald and being alone in the coop couldn't have been very toasty when the snow hit). We did put a heat pack in the coop but I doubt she ever got off the perch to use it. It wasn't until she resembled a chicken again until she ventured off the perch. It took about a week of feeling comfortable in the coop, until she came down the ladder one day and hasn't looked back! Such a strange few months, and I'm pleased to report a year on she is still with us and doing as well if not better than before. However, I am feeling the autumn air approaching again and worrying if this 'illness' is likely to repeat itself this year? Has anyone ever experienced similar with their hens? She is still laying daily bless her, so I want to keep her on the layers pellets, but I have started supplementing with around 20% growers in the hope of fending-off a repeat. If indeed it was a protein-deficiency!? I could even understand her wanting to stay inside, as she was a lone-hen and the moult is stressful and leaves them vulnerable, but it was her staggering and walking backwards and general panic which was the really strange thing. Love to hear your thoughts.
  3. mullethunter

    Sort of wheezy and lacking appetite after broody spell

    Will do and I know there’s a good chance this will be the first difficulty of many with Duck. Would you recommend Beryls or something different?
  4. The Dogmother

    Sort of wheezy and lacking appetite after broody spell

    Great news - just make sure that she gets plenty of probiotics to support her gut function
  5. I have a supply of bedding. I bought it online. I did look locally, but places I tried didn't seem to have chicken bedding or pellets. Can rabbit, or other conventional pet, bedding be used for hens? The easiest solution is to never run out, but there could always be an emergency.
  6. Yesterday
  7. The Dogmother

    Chickens in the heat

    Erm, not a good idea to feed them dairy - they might like it, but they can't digest it. Best stick to cold water
  8. The Dogmother

    Countryfile Live

    I can see the problem with Blenheim - there is a good surrounding network of roads, but once you get close to the estate, the roads are narrow, and the town itself is easily clogged by traffic.
  9. Cat tails

    Chickens in the heat

    They love anything with sugar! Milk products might not be the way to go though. They can’t really digest it and it can cause some tummy upsets. Better keep it to green vegetables.
  10. Cat tails

    Antibiotics

    If you have a kitchen scale, you can measure out 1 g and then take half. Although it will never be as accurate. But you will be in the right order of magnitude.
  11. Peter

    Chickens in the heat

    When it is hot I give them cold milk and ice-cream in a bowl on the lawn and they love it. Peter
  12. Valkyrie

    Holiday season, tourists and so on

    LOL - vomit comet! Now that's my sort of travel! I flew to Jersey, nicest plane trip ever without any ear problems that I had with British Airways - British Caledonian! Very smooth and I loved Jersey. We did get stopped (I travelled with my old school chum) by customs who stuck his hand in a bag which contained oh so many Danish pastries as we'd gone to the market before going to the airport homeward bound! He went oooh sticky goodies!
  13. SeramaSilly

    Sort of wheezy and lacking appetite after broody spell

    Aw, that sounds more promising! :-)
  14. Miss Feathers

    Antibiotics

    Hi it came as loose powder from a ziplock bag and he has put. Give .5 gr in 1 litre of water. How do I measure something so small?
  15. mullethunter

    Sort of wheezy and lacking appetite after broody spell

    I’d say she’s a little brighter today Thankyou. She’s eaten quite a lot of mealworms, a few sunflower hearts and some mixed corn. Not enough but more than yesterday. I’m not counting any chickens yet but I am crossing my fingers.
  16. Cat tails

    Holiday season, tourists and so on

    Jersey sounds great! I struggle finding trips that suit me and are affordable on my own. If you travel by yourself, you often end up paying for close to two people!
  17. patsylabrador

    Holiday season, tourists and so on

    Great. Thanks!
  18. soapdragon

    Holiday season, tourists and so on

    We've booked a few days in Jersey (travelling via the fast boat AKA the vomit comet !) for the October half term. Looking forward to it. Wanted some time in Europe.......flying but well over £1 000 for four of us for three nights.
  19. soapdragon

    Countryfile Live

    OOOh er, Mrs! That'll put the cat amongst the pigeons!
  20. Patricia W

    The Customer is Always Right

    No, I’ve not seen that first one. Love the Repair Shop. And Money for Nothing
  21. Patricia W

    Countryfile Live

    Well, it’s going to Windsor Great Park. It seems to be traffic issues that killed it At Blenheim
  22. Valkyrie

    Holiday season, tourists and so on

    The first one I read was The Story of Aunt Becky's Army Life by Sarah A Palmer The one I've just started is Letters of a Family During the War for the Union Volume 1 (I also have volume 2) 1861 to 1865 by Georgiana Muirson Woolsey Bacon There is also My Heart Toward Home, from the same author but it looks different to my copies, so think it might be another branch of the family letters in addition to the above 2 volumes.
  23. patsylabrador

    Holiday season, tourists and so on

    What's the titles of the books? My husband is teaching himself about the American civil war and might find those interesting. I read a series of similar books about the first world war and they were fascinating.
  24. SeramaSilly

    Sort of wheezy and lacking appetite after broody spell

    Aw, please let us know how Duck gets on? xx
  25. mullethunter

    Antibiotics

    I think if it’s Tylan soluble it’s usually half a gram (so 0.5 rather than 0.05) per litre https://www.viovet.co.uk/Tylan-Antibiotic/c323/
  26. soapdragon

    The Customer is Always Right

    I've not seen The Customer is Always Right - what channel is it and when? I'll perhaps record it! Love The Repair Shop; they are all so clever! Recently there was a battered old bear who looked totally beyond redemption and they took him apart, washed him, re stuffed etc and he looked amazing! It makes me realise how well made things were in the past and how good the quality of everyday things actually was.....don't think stuff from our current, throw away society will last as many of The Repair Shop items have. I'm with you CT; many of the back stories on The Repair Shop are uplifting, inspiring, sad, joyous, etc.
  27. Cat tails

    Antibiotics

    What does the bottle/box say? 0,05 grams sounds like very little. And I really don’t think it would correspond to 5 mL but it all depends on the density of the powder.
  1. Load more activity
  • Newsletter

    Want to keep up to date with all our latest news and information?

    Sign Up



×