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About mad.hen1

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    Chicken Eggspert
  1. HI, they like you to have a minimum of 3 in case one dies (ie if you had 2 and one died, the other would be alone.) Mine pretty timid still, disappear into the eglu when i go near, but beginning to venture into walk in run. One has a bit of a stiff looking leg but hoping she just bruised. None of them know how to scratch yet, they just peck. Am assuming they will learn. The last ones had a non battery hen to show them the ropes so got it quickly. Keep posting on how yours are!
  2. Hello Just to let you know I too got 3 ex batts from Cov yesterday! So far only one has dared to venture out of the eglu onto the WIN and made a huge commotion about it - very excited (I think!). In fact so much so that when she went back into the eglu and carried on shouting, one of her sisters pecked her as if to tell her to stop making such a racket.... Have even had an egg, aw, was rather hoping they wouldn't lay for a while as I want them to rest! At the moment it all seems very new and congusing I think, but already their personalities are beginning to develop. I had 2 ex batts a year or so agao which Mr Fox put paid to (when my poor neighbour in charge) and they too developed into lovely girls, full of personality. All the best to you and your girls!
  3. HI, I would be interested to know from other hen lovers whether any one has actually had a fox bite through chicken wire. A friend is constructing a chicken enclosure in my back garden (in which the eglu sits.) It is 6.5 feet high, wire dug down 9 inches, covered over. The wire is... chicken wire. It doesn't look that fox proof to me however he assures me no fox will hbite through it. This will be the most elaborate hen run I have had. Previously they free-ranged behind netting which was totally not fox proof and were put away late afternoon / early evening depending on time of year. This worked fine until I left a neighbour in charge and she didn't get to them early enough..... fox had a lovely tea. So this construction is a big improvement on that and I still intend to go on with my previous in / out routine. main question is about the biting through. What do folks think? Thanks!
  4. I would just like to say a huge thank you to my two ladies Posh and Ginger, for all their wonderful eggs and company. Posh was a Miss Pepperpot, veteran of a fox attack that took her first friend Pecks, and had been with me over two years. She was the most beautiful of hens and laid lovely dark brown eggs. She died in a fox attack and i am so sorry I was away and not there to care for her as usual. Ginger was an ex batt and the funniest hen - she would jump on my back and come up behind me and peck me. and she laid faithfully every day. Ginger, I miss you lots and hope you enjoyed your last year of freedom and retirement. I am sorry Iwas not there for you when you needed me to be. RIP my lovelies.
  5. Thanks dawn i would like that. Do I need to send you a private message or something?
  6. thanks all possibly being quite thick but whats WIR?
  7. thank you gamebird. I have another question. (I am totally new to this electrifying idea so need to start from first principles.) if i get a car battery, how do I then attach it to the fence? Also, does then fence need to be completely supported by the poles? In places it is nailed to wooden fence posts so presumably that would short it out? Thanks again. I HATE FOXES!
  8. HI Does anyone know whether the green netting availaible in the shop can be electrified? It looks just like my friends electric neting, without the electricity! Thanks
  9. Hello, just wanted to post this as I am so massively upset (a euphemism for the very rude words i would be posting if this was not an online forum.) My two lovely lovely girls Posh and Ginger (Miss pepperpot and ex bat) taken from their run while I was away by one of those hideous canine red things, and while in care of neighbour. haven't spoken to neighbour yet - not because I blame her in any way but because I prefer to cry in private! It was always going to happen because they are out and about all day and I made the decision that they would prefer that than total safety in their eglu. They had a great and full hen life and Ginger would long ago have been in a pie, so that is some consolation I suppose. But I am just soooo upset! Pragmatism only gets you so far and the emotional fall out is massive. I don't know if this is bad protocol for the forum but will ask anyway.... anyone in Wolverhampton area got any chicken wire going beggging? i want to make the hen space more fox proof but finances are really tight. I also want to get more ex-batts but would like to keep them! Thanks for reading, all.
  10. Hi all, Posh I fear has mites... I have dusted her but I don't think I've done it properly as she still has bald, red patches underneath her. They began around her vent / knickers area but that is now ok, but I notice the bald, red areas have spread underneath her. there are tiny new feathers coming through but the skin looks inflamed. Do people think there is anything I can do to improve the condition of the skin? Or is it most likely that I have not de-mited her thoroughly enough and she is still suffering/ She is not an easy hen to do things too which is in part a reason for lack of thoroughness. It's hard to get hold of her! Would people try to moisturise the skin while using mite / louse powder in conjunction? If so, what with? have wondered about some basic moisturiser and putting some tea tree in it? Would be very happy to receive any advice. She is a lovely lookng bird apart from her poor undercarriage.
  11. i think the main issue is that when hens see blood on others, they really go for it, so it is definitely something to be aware of. I know what you mean - it is a very disturbing aspect of hen keeping and quite at odds with their fluffy cuteness. Everyone I know who has hens has both the pecking story to tell and the fox attack one, so I suspect it is just something that you will inevitably encounter at some point if you keep hens over a period of time. To put that in context I have kept five hens over 2 years and in that time have lost 1 to a fox and 1 because of cannibalism. For me it is worth it on both counts tho it is no less upsetting for that. I have just decided to accept the risks and potential unpleasantness. I do think that, while we tend to view our hens as pets (and indeed, in many respects they are) it is important to keep sight of the fact that they do have a darker and less pleasant aspect, which is an integral part of their psychological make up.
  12. Very sorry to hear the news. I fully understand how it is to lose one, I cry every time but my great comfort is that my ex batts at least had a retirement and the chance to scratch and feel the earth under their feet - to be hens as hens should be. You did a good thing for your hen and gave her a life she would never othersise have experienced so hang onto that. All the best.
  13. There's a vet in Shifnal who is apparently good with hens. That said I took mine to Connaught House Tettenhall Rd but they couldn't do much for her. It was they that gave me the Shifnal no but at that point it was too little too late. I am sorry I can't find it or would post it, but if you called them they'd give it to you. Tel no. 424725
  14. Two of mine pecked the thrid so badly that she prolapsed and had to be destroyed at the vet - she was running with blood and totally unprotesting as they ate her, it was vile. The bulk of the pecking happened overnight and before I let them out in the morning so there was absolutely nothing I could have done to prevent it. Much as i love my hens i felt sick for a few days afterwards, really was an introduction to the dark side of poultry keeping.
  15. Hi, I did the egg with mustard trick on Ginger.... result was, said egg devoured, 2 eggs left untouched in nest box and hen strangely reluctant to peck me, for once. I claim victory, cautiously! Will check your thread...

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