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Daphne last won the day on July 15

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  1. Lucky you Beantree, hares are so beautiful. For a while I lived on an arable farm and we had hares playing on the lawn just outside the window, which was just lovely. Unfortunately sometimes there was also illegal hare coursing on the other side of the farm and the police had to be called. I am also allergic to bunny fur, my understanding is that it is superfine so can irritate susceptible noses/eyes quite easily. Recently I read that lockdown has led to a lot of unwanted rabbits because people didn't realise how hard they can be to look after, biting cropped up a lot.
  2. I am very sorry for both your losses. I know I can't write anything which will come close to closing the gap for either of you, but just know there are people you have never met who share your sense of sadness. RIP Peggy and Minnie. Beantree, that is a fantastic age, I never got anywhere near it, you even gave her a go at being the boss by the sound of it! She must have had a fantastic life to live such a long time, which hopefully means lots of good memories for you. Luvachicken, we know how much you tried to save Peggy, you did your best for her whilst she was alive and made the right choice at the end, caring for her all the while. That's all anybody can do, so when you can, just enjoy thinking about the good times with her.
  3. Intereresting Beantree, and Annabel, thanks for posting. I strongly believe that good husbandry comes from observation and knowing your own birds, and you two obviously do! I would agree it sounds like top hen continuing to show her dominance. Are both these hens in the company of a cockeral or not?
  4. Non chicken-keeping folk can be very unthinking sometimes. I love the fact you said you could say anything to Gemma and she always replied; its a perfect tribute.
  5. That's unbelievable. Nature certainly is awesome, majestic and terrible all at once.
  6. I'm sorry to hear it, Luvachicken, she obviously meant a lot to you. What a lucky girl she was having you to look after her. RIP Gemma.
  7. Well done, that sounds traumatic, but I know in the same circs I would have done the same as you. My philosophy is that a try at life is probably better than not bothering, but if it becomes clear I made a mistake, then I will cull, I find it easier whilst they are chicks. However, we are going to be positive. Come on small bird!
  8. Welcome back! You have done exceptionally well, 12 years old, that's fantastic! Both your girls look happy and in good order, what a nice photo, just relaxing on the grass in the warm.
  9. On the basis many foods are flavoured, not actually made of the ingredient, I have often wondered why cat food isn't mouse or vole flavoured for example! How is Peggy today, Luvachicken?
  10. Not saying it will work, but when mine are poorly and not eating I mix weetabix, chicken mash, or bashed up pellets, with cold water and hand feed.
  11. With all the wet, can you buy land cress (as opposed to watercress) seeds? If so, they might do well. I think we have been very lucky here this year, growing conditions have been perfect. Given most years are not like this I am just luxuriating in it, knowing it won't last. Just today I have had to go and buy fruit, the first time in a couple of months (apart from bananas) and it really sticks in the throat, although I have loads of frozen and dried cherries/ peaches/ nectarines/ plums and we have also had apricots, strawbs and a breba crop of figs (ie an early crop, which only occurs in certain years and only with certain varieties, ahead of the main Sept crop). We have had so many plums (our own and other peoples) that we are trying an experiment which is to distill some plum hard liquor (I think its called slivovitz in some countries). We have a mix of sour purple ones, huge sweet purple ones, purple ones which taste like pears, small yellow ones and larger yellow ones which are sweeter. And this is just the early crop, there will be another wave in September! I have also made jam with the tart fruit. I feel a bit like some American frontierswoman in an apron. I wouldn't worry on the tomato front, Beantree, my cherry toms are now edible, but all the others are still green. I have tried to plan for early/mid/late toms this year so its not such a glut. I would imagine your rogue ones came from a stray bit of tomato thrown on the compost heap? I have acquired potato plants and broad beans like this, although they are never very marvellous, and I once grew a butternut squash in the same way, which was good. I have to say the beetroot, planted next to the strawbs, has been stellar this year, and I've managed to eat all the leaves as well, both as salad and cooked. If anybody likes beetroot sliced in vinegar I have made some using vinegar which has had chili in it, so there is some residual heat, if you add a touch of sugar its delicious. The strawbs were first year runners, and tiny, but they fruited quite well and have already grown 'daughter' runners, and one even has a 'grand-daughter'. Its not my skill, its my new new bed, full of ordinary soil, but with a hefty dose of guano and some super-charged fertilised compost (which I don't approve of, and wouldn't have bought had I realised). However, the proof is clearly there, as the other half of my strawberry plants in another bed, are about 1/2 the size and 1/4 productivity of my new bed. We went to a local market today for the first time in about 18 months, we have stayed away because of covid. The sellers are largely little old ladies with the contents of their allotments. I bought some stripey courgettes and aubergines which are about a foot long, but only about an inch in diameter. Some of them are so bright (purple) they look spray painted! I have no idea what variety they are, and must look them up. Having looked them up, they are some sort of Chinese Aubergine. I have also bought some local toms, which are a slight pinkish tone, rather than orangey/red.
  12. Well, in either case France is behind the UK which stands at 51% having had 2 doses, and 68% with one, so I can understand the concern. Its like Portugal, we are quite 'open' but lack the UK's progress on vaccination, although we haven't gone mad and are keeping social distancing and masks, so perversely I feel safer here than I would in the UK under the proposed new regime post July-19th. My understanding is that although a double jab cuts the chances of getting covid by something like 88% the sheer numbers mean more people than normal will be going to hospital just as a percentage of the higher case numbers. I guess the question is when is the level reached that hospitals are stretched unnecessarily, let alone overwhelmed, given how exhausted many medical professionals are already.
  13. Well I wouldn't get an orp for a different reason. It is entirely possible to buy properly bred orps if you find a reputable breeder, so although Beantree may be right about a few birds, the vast majority are not overbred to the extent they can't stand, and I have bred my own and spent time with well known breeders over many years. However, big boys with big chests = big crow! Although its powerful low note, and a nice sound if you like that sort of thing. For that reason I might be slightly wary of the JG, although I think they are magnificent birds. I guess it depends how close your neighbours are as well as your own feelings. The quietest breed I ever bred were red sussex. They are a rare breed and so the gene pool is quite small. I even sold a boy to somebody who queried me after the sale to check he was a boy as they had never heard him crow, although luckily the arrival of little chicks proved it! Other sussex have been just as noisy as any other breed. Modern game are slight birds with a relatively slight crow, and polands are loud and a bit screechy, but Beantree is right really, its down to the individual.
  14. I don't think French news are the only ones who are staggered, although I can understand that at some point we have to get back to normal and live with covid, and that will involve risks. However, it doesn't seem right to me that 100,000 new cases a day is the right level of risk, and I can't understand at all why masks are not continuing to be obligatory in certain situations.
  15. Somewhat thinly disguised I think, looking at the profile of the author. In my professional opinion its a poor questionnaire as well, far too long, some leading questions, too much extraneous information being requested and some poor options as answers.

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