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AyeAyeMagpie last won the day on March 25

AyeAyeMagpie had the most liked content!

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About AyeAyeMagpie

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    Chicken Eggspert

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  1. AyeAyeMagpie

    Heritage Breeds (TM)!?

    I'm planning to sell excess eggs to friends and colleagues. When I went online to get an idea of what to price them at, I came across Ocado's "Heritage Breed (TM)" range. I have never seen such a load off waffly, trumped-up marketing copy before. For reference: https://www.ocado.com/webshop/product/Heritage-Breeds-Royal-Legbar-Free-Range-Blue-Hen-Eggs/366278011?gclsrc=aw.ds&ds_rl=1126321&ds_rl=1164972&ULP_CAMPAIGN_ID=52&gclid=CjwKCAiAiJPkBRAuEiwAEDXZZXDevKOJzoXVN2XsbF97ql3NUbrtWUkHVcLSa_EDOWOhu8qhErqEWBoC6TgQAvD_BwE Is a "Royal" Legbar even a thing? I tried googling it but only came up with their product or Cream Legbar. What makes it royal? And somewhat disconcertingly, they list rearing the chickens on "wholesome vegetarian diets" as a selling point...What are other chickens fed then? My favourite bit of marketing waffle is, "beautifully versatile". Well, yes, of course it is; it's an egg!
  2. AyeAyeMagpie

    New and creative place to perch..

    We block the entrance to the nest box at night so our chickens have to sleep on the roosting bars, but one of our Silkies routinely hope up and over early in the morning to lay an egg. I was so perplexed the first time she did it when I found a mystery egg in the closed-off nesting box with no chicken in sight. They're such characters, aren't they?
  3. AyeAyeMagpie

    Hens for Children, Bantams or Silkies?

    I'll be honest, I wasn't a huge fan of Silkies before I got them and didn't really count them as proper chickens, but I'm happy to have proven myself wrong.
  4. AyeAyeMagpie

    Hens for Children, Bantams or Silkies?

    We've got two Silkies. We got them for our children and I'm so pleased we did. Although they're classed as large breed they're still the smallest in our flock of 6. They are very easy to pick up and pet, my 2 year old is very confident going up to her black Silkie, Nora and picking her up on her own without any trouble. They lay really nice small eggs with big yolks and a strong shell. They are in a predictable pattern of laying a batch of eggs then going broody for a little bit, which is just as nature intended. Our black one lays light brown eggs and our white one lays a pale white/blue egg (not as string in colouras our Cream Legbar), so I guess she must have a throwback to auracana somewhere in her DNA but appears to be all Silkie. The breeder said all of her white ones lay that colour.
  5. I picked up two lovely big branches when walking in the woods. They rest on the wooden frame of our walk in run and are secured with cable ties. We also have breeze blocks for them to hop onto, we dug them out of the garden (slowly but surely landscaping).
  6. I'm hoping you are able to help me fact-check a post that I came across on social media. It's been stated that consumer demand for large eggs is causing poultry farmers to force their chickens to lay bigger eggs, putting strain on the birds and resulting in blood smears on the egg shells. Does anyone have any factual information with which to support or dispute this claim? Any articles or reports on the subject in the public domain? I'm struggling to fact check it by myself.
  7. AyeAyeMagpie

    Caught Mr ‘I don't want or like chickens’ out

    Give it a week and he'll be crowning himself chief chicken keeper!
  8. If you go for bare earth don't use a weed suppressing membrane on top, apparently it creates a smelly film of sludge, whereas woodchip straight onto bare earth allows poo etc to drain through. I got this tip from the Flyte So Fancy Ask Phil video when researching the same question before setting up my run. I have woodchip onto bare earth.
  9. AyeAyeMagpie

    Advice on vent please?

    Thank you, that's really helpful.
  10. AyeAyeMagpie

    Advice on vent please?

    Thank you! I really appreciate your opinions. I've since compared with pics of chicken lice eggs on Google and got a second opinion from the vet just now, looks like it's a simple case of treating all chickens until it's dealt with. I hope this thread proves useful for future chicken keepers with the same issue.
  11. AyeAyeMagpie

    Advice on vent please?

    Not that I've noticed and I've spent a lot of time with them this week, but it could be happening in the coop before I let them out. The flock dynamic seems settled. Could it also be moulting? But what about the fuzzy mounds at the base of some feathers - does that look fungal? I'm such a complete novice at this I really haven't a clue.
  12. AyeAyeMagpie

    Advice on vent please?

    Hello, hoping some more experienced chicken keepers will be able to advise on my chicken Rosie's vent. I've noticed that her bum feathers have been looking a bit unkempt and mucky over the last week so I brought her in this afternoon for a wash and to take a closer look. She's lost a lot of feathers on her bum and it just doesn't look quite right. Do you think this is a fungal infection? I don't really know what I'm looking at. And one of Rosie just for a giggle (it looks like I've plugged her in to charge up) ...
  13. My 6 chickens have a lovely big covered run which they spend most of their time in and then we let them free range for an hour or so when we're actively out in the garden with them. Over the Christmas holiday I've been able to let them free range more because I've been working on the garden and that has led me to relax off a bit. Now I'm letting them free range while I'm in the house and I look out the window frequently. I don't think I'll ever leave them to free range when I'm away from the house at work etc but I am beginning to relax off a bit. Was/is anyone else a bit anxious about their chickens free ranging as a new keeper? I'm hoping I will relax more. Our garden is a good size and secure with a 6ft fence all the way round but I'm still worried about my Cream Legbar flying out, even though I've clipped her wing.
  14. AyeAyeMagpie

    What has happened to the forum?

    I am new here but have frequented other forums and it's the same all over. There's not so many people one them and the less active they are the less frequently regulars check in and so on it goes. I hope it's a trend that shifts. I've not found Facebook groups to be a good substitute for forums, you can't segment by topic or use search tools in the same way, I don't see the appeal.
  15. So, I'm still very new this keeping chickens thing but I'm pretty certain that it's unusual for chickens to come into lay at the darkest time of year. Just over a week ago one of my Marans and a Silkie started laying, having never done so before. I was expecting them to wait until the longer days started to kick in so I'm a bit surprised. My other Silkie, which was already laying but had gone quiet for a few weeks has started laying regularly again too. I've got about a dozen unexpected eggs in my kitchen now!