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Henhathnofury

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Everything posted by Henhathnofury

  1. Grandmashazzle - so sorry to hear about your daughter - it takes so much time out of a life, doesn't it? I am glad that she received good treatment. Yes, my oncology nurse (who is the most beautiful soul) has talked about another specialist in Bristol but my condition is so very rare that there is one major specialist who is based at Guy's and as a teaching hospital, it really it is the very best for new and cutting edge treatments. Being poorly and exhausted most of the time, I really don't like change now and I would also miss my nurse. Mullethunter - that's the kind of info I come specifically to the forum for - I had not thought about the lawn but to a landlord unaccustomed to chickens, it might be wise to offer to do that to sway the let. Although Mabel is a 'mess up the path' kind of a girl she only digs up the moss in the lawn not the actual lawn - which is actually awfully useful! I do try and be cheerful and positive but there have been times - well, when I have looked at high speed trains and considered it, really. But I have a daughter and a chicken to look after! I take though responsibilities very seriously. Thank you for the advice - it is all going into my tiny chemo-knackered brain. I am on a long-term drug called Interferon which is now causing some problems with fogginess and confusion at times. A lot of fun!
  2. I love East Sussex and Sussex in general. One complication is that I have family in Wales and because of my escalating health issues, they want me to be closer. Ideally, they would love me to live in Bristol but I am not sure of this quite drastic move. Somewhere halfway between Reading and Bristol would be ideal. Hilariously, there is apparently a village called Halfway which is exactly that!
  3. Merlina - I have stayed in the house for quite a while but my daughter is now 19 and although a very young 19 with many many problems, my ex legally has no obligations in that department. He wants to get rid of the house and is increasingly frustrated, because he can no longer really afford to pay the mortgage. I do understand his frustrations and I know that this situation cannot continue indefinitely, I just feel unsettled of course and perhaps need to 'man up' a little. I have lymphoma though, which is quite debilitating. If I was in normal health I would be up like a whippet and moving onwards. So I know all my rights and I can argue a good case - but there is a limit to how long I can stay in this situation. I will keep thinking about farm cottages - it's a nice thought. wellies, a cockerel in the distance and birdsong. (I nearly wrote willies then!)
  4. Thank you so much for responding. Like a dizzy chicken, I don't know which way my derriere is facing. I think I will visit some areas and try and look at this calmly. My daughter's depression and anxiety has now kicked in big time. It's so lovely to see her cuddling Mabel, our chicken - we all know they they are the best kind of pets of all kinds of reasons. I wake up thinking 'Onwards and Upwards!' but often the air gets let of my tyres!
  5. Hello there lovely chicken folk I haven't been on the Omlet forum for quite some time, as life has been exceptionally challenging. Throughout it all, my chickens gave me so much comfort. However, I wanted to wind down because of cancer treatment, my daughter's quite serious problems and a very unpleasant break-up with partner after 20 years. I had one chicken left eventually and then a local woman, who also had one chicken, asked me to take her girl. I did so but my own old girl (she was 6 and over) then died, leaving me with one chook, which is never ideal. However, I have now received an offer on my house (sale forced by ex) and now I must uproot with my little chook and daughter and I will have to rent, so I am more than a little worried about how this works. I have had a truly shocking five years and I would like to ease things somewhat by finding somewhere lovely to live - a farm cottage or something similar that is cosy, comfortable and close to nature. However, I do need it to also be very near public transport, as I have to regularly go up to Guy's Hospital, I cannot get any more chickens until I am well and truly settled. I have an Eglu and even an aviary I could dismantle - but I am wondering what next to do. I anticipate the house sale, once started, would take around eight weeks. Am I being unrealistic about a rural setting that is also convenient for links? I have had this set-up with both of my previous houses - it has been walkable or a bus route to a train station. I want to keep my chook and get her some friends, to be happy ultimately - which I haven't been for five years and it is getting very wearing, as well as taking a toll on my health. I am in Berkshire, but I am also thinking of Bucks or Oxfordshire. I have looked at the Farley Estate but that is all let at the mo. Has anyone any advice for me? I am seriously exhausted and discombobulated at the mo.
  6. Also a little warning - I don't want to worry anyone but sometimes baby rats can be mistaken for mice...they do look similar at an early stage. Their droppings are spindle shaped...so should be distinctive. I have a problem with rats...so I am sprinking curry powder in the areas they are seen, flooding any tunnels and generally being vigilant about food. It's tough though...they are around, breeding like mad...
  7. Thanks all. Thanks especially to Lydia for the offer. I have half a bag of pellets left, but I am planning ahead. The little darlings seem to be very hungry at the moment...it must be the cold weather...
  8. Hello there - especially chicken keepers in Berkshire. I am looking for good suppliers, of either Marriages or even Garvo pellets. I can't drive..so I need a good online supplier. I have of course googled a few - but I haven't used any yet and would like to hear some experiences.... Thanks in advance.
  9. Hi CC - A Foxwatch is a sonic device that is triggered by movement. I had have quite a lot of evidence than it works and the fact that the fox chewed through the wires and then clearly planned his attack, would seem to confirm this. Four of 'em going off must drive the fox crazy!
  10. Thank you kind ladies - chicken people are always the best kind of folk. I now have two more Foxwatches (that was quick) and I now got two on mains and two on battery. I am waiting for Scoot then I have to learn how to apply it. But I will never ever rely on leaving my girls out again. They are course are furious, whining like puppies and giving me the eyes. But they have a huge aviary and a run.....so they are not deprived. But if the fox had them......I am not sure if I could cope at the moment. Thank you again. Animals make my life better and chickens in particular are a joy...
  11. I have had rather a long absence, grappling with illness and life. Then just as I get my life back on track - I am stronger - my other half completely shocks us all by leaving. He seems to have had a meltdown with the pressure of work, said he was feeling trapped and caged...then completely abandoned his daughter, his animals. It has been a traumatic time. But the chickens have been my comfort, my cuddles and my tear-mopper-uppers. Today they were making a racket - no worse than usual but I went out and told them off. They calmed down and I turned to go back into the house....but I couldn't get away with the feeling that I was being watched. I went towards the buses and suddenly a huge dog fox jumped out, nearly ran into me and lolloped off over the fence. When I went to look at the Foxwatches, two of the wires had been clean bitten through. Has anyone an idea how you can fix chewed wires? I have bought batteries for now and even bought two more Foxwatch devices to put on mains, plus Scoot to spray. But I feel that my life is unravelling and my girls are so important to me. My daughter would also be so upset if anything happened to them. I won't be letting them free-range for a while. Big sigh.
  12. Oh you poor thing. You did the best for your girls. Think of them and all the funny things they used to do. You will shed some tears but the smiles will come as well.
  13. I have two broody Croad Langshan. There is a wire fence around their coop during the day. The other two girls quite happily lay their eggs in the Eglu - the Croad are not interested in going in there. I find, like children, they respond to distraction. So I cuddle them, put them out on the grass and put bits of sweetcorn in water so that they drink. For a while, they dustbathe, scratch around and actually eat something. My biggest worry is that left their own devices, they don't eat or drink. They don't even POO! It is really is obsessive mother love. Broody girls will lose condition if left to their own devices....
  14. There is a sign there that you might possibly have rats, Duncan. Every summer we have the same pattern: lovely little field mice, big eyes. Cute as buttons. Then they disappear. The reason is that mice disappear when rats move in - they cannot co-exist. You may not have seen them because they are largely nocturnal. But if you do see any in the day - that means there are too many and/or they are sending out a weaker scout to test the food/nesting site.
  15. I meant to say - my post is somewhat confusing and contradictory - that kitchen s"Ooops, word censored!"s LEFT FOR SOME TIME will attract vermin, not quickly devoured food from dinosaur-footed chickens....
  16. Bill I understand your viewpoint entirely. However I am Quaker and I really can't kill anything. Our neighbour has used lethal traps - caught no rats but killed birds and mutilated frogs. So she actually wants us to use humane traps. Frustratingly she has blamed our chickens despite the fact that she puts CHEESE ON THE FLOOR for the birds. Also, she found a rat's nest in her compost pile, which she still throws everything in. I understand the Defra rule but I am afraid that kitchen s"Ooops, word censored!"s no more attract rats than chicken food does. A rat's natural diet is cereal-based - so they will be attracted. I don't give s"Ooops, word censored!"s (of course not) but if I did I would watch the chickens eat it all up and take away any wasteage. We are actually very vigilant with our pelleted food - taking it in at night, storing in metal bins etc. But we live next to huge fields adjoining a school. The school has had numerous complaints because their grounds are so unkempt - lots of logs, rubbish etc. The rats are coming from there and they have a regular pest company that deals with their infestations. The rats who come to us are usually young - scouting.
  17. Pest controllers will tell you a lot of things - especially scare stories. They make money from it, after all. But this from a well-respected pest control company who supply humane traps (after all, would those traps be for sale if re-release was illegal. What would be the point?) http://www.rattraps.org.uk/Rat-Traps/ratcontrol.aspx Once you have caught a rat if you cannot bring yourself to kill it humanely you will need to take it up to a minimum of 2 miles away to ensure it will not return. Try to find a place where there is likely to be food and shelter e.g. a thick hedgerow would be good. Release it carefully so has not to harm it and to give it a fighting chance of survival. Two other things: My OH only says that he is taking the rat to the woods. How do I know he is actually releasing it? It is against DEFRA regulations to feed chickens s"Ooops, word censored!"s from your kitchen. (Um....how many of us are innocent of that!)
  18. An update: I was having no luck with chocolate and peanut butter and then had a brainwave. This little rat has grown up on chicken food - so I laid a small trail leading to the trap. Result! It is indeed a young rat. Have given it a breadstick and some cucumber (for water content) - it is happily chomping away. Later, when OH gets home - he will go to the woods with a packed lunch. Sadly Cathy came out, looked at the rat and is now sitting in the coop, looking sad. Awful. Must give her lots of love and treats today...
  19. Exactly. They are a social species. If it is a female, it will find a mate. If it is a male, it will scout for a place to eat and bring back a partner. I just cannot catch the critter!
  20. Chickens do not read the guidebooks. It's a problem...
  21. Sounds like a protein deficiency. Do you have any anti-peck spray? It tastes horrible, apparently. But adding some more protein - such as mealworms - might help...
  22. Noise depends on the circumstances. There is eggy clucking, predator squawking and 'panic help mum' screaming. But it is not all the time and some breeds are quieter. After some initial racket, our croad langshan are now true to their breed. They make a lovely low sound like a train. But the best sounds are the purring...usually when they are dustbathing. So no - chickens are not quiet all the time.
  23. I am so sorry for your double loss. I had a rabbit with flystrike so I understand the horror and the guilt. It was so serious that he was taken to the animal hospital BY TAXI. He did survive but it's an awful thing. You have had such an awful time. Chicken people understand and I send you hugs. Smile when you think about the funny things they did - that has always helped me in the past.....
  24. I do love rats and yes, I feel sad about it. But we would be taking it to the woods where we released its family. I think that's where it really should be. It's strange but catching them, I have learnt a lot about the species. They tend to scream when you approach but with one, after I gave it some food - it came to the bars the second time I went out to it. They are a highly adaptable species who have bad PR. Sadly though, they can contaminate water and if provoked could bite. Cathy may love it but if my enormous Speckled Sussex gets it......

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