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Nicola O

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  1. Thanks Redwing He looked better this morning, and just looked at him again as I've got in from work and he is bombing round with the others - but I was shocked to see that one of the others had died. He seemed absolutely fine this morning, and there's not a mark on him so I'm not sure what's happened to him . This has not been a good hatch for poor Bertha. She started with 12 eggs, crushed 2 within the first 24 hrs, and then managed to crush and kill another 3 at hatch (before they even got out of the egg), 2 were infertile, so I was pleased that 5 had made it. Now we are down to 4 . Nicola
  2. Bertha has hatched five chicks over the last 48 hours, but I've noticed that the last one out - hatched during today - his belly hasn't closed properly and you can see a tiny yellow bulge (I assume that's the remains of his yolk). The tiny 'opening' is clean and I have given him a little puff of poultry antibiotic wound powder. Can chicks get over this and as the last of the yolk is absorbed with he 'close up' ?? He is quieter than the others and keeps stopping to rest and his head drops into the shavings, and then he leaps up. I'm hoping he is quieter because he only hatched today and hasn't fully recovered from it and hasn't found his feet yet. I will, of course, keep a close eye on him but I wondered if anyone ele has experienced this, and what the outcome was. Nicola
  3. Thanks guys . Had another gentle squeeze and got a bit more gunk out. I've never been overly worried about the lump as all the vets were adamant it was just fatty, and as you say CM, with her being a much older dog I did not want to put her through a general anasthetic (spl?) to remove it. The contents are def. not pussy or smelly so I will keep it clean, keep an eye on it and see how it now heals - I don't need to worry about Millie 'worrying' it as she is not bothered in the slightest by it. Nicola.
  4. Millie, my 17 year old Min Poodle has a lump on the top of her hip. She has had it for about 6 or 7 years and it has slowley grown so it is now about the size of a slightly flattened walnut. The lump is on the underside of her skin, it is not attached to fat or flesh below it and you can pinch behind it. Each year when she goes to the vet for her booster I ask the vet to check it and they all say it is just a fatty lump and nothing to worry about. Well, today whilst clipping her I noticed a bit of black gunge on it so wiped it over and realised it was oozing from the lump (I first thought she had rolled in some chook poo) so I squeezed it - DO NOT READ ON IF YOU ARE EATING - and out came a dark grey/black gunge with flecks of white in it, and it had the consistency of toothpaste. It came out easily upon squeezing and it did not smell. Millie did not flinch or object at all, in fact I don't think she really felt what I was doing. I got a lot out and the lump is now greatly reduced and after I puffed some antibiotic wound powder on it. I am convinced that I did not catch it with the clippers and the hole was completely round and looked like the lump had just burst. So my question is - does this sound like the contents of a fatty lump, or should I be worried?? I think there are a couple of vet people on her, or has anyone else experienced this?? Many thanks, Nicola
  5. This afternoon I found Lily dead in the nest. She had been a little quiet the last couple of days but checked her over and found nothing obvious, but when I lifted her out I noticed that her comb, wattles and even her face were really blue so I am guessing it was her heart. She was my one and only reliable broody who hatched and reared Gladys and my lovely Boris last year and she will be missed
  6. My Doris is having a massive moult at the moment and feeling rather sorry for herself - I was wondering too if it was the weather. It does mean that everytime she shakes the sparrows and starlings are having a fab time coming in for the feathers for their nests . Nicola
  7. She's an Omlet girl, a Miss Pepperpot, nearly 3 years old. My thoughts exactly All the runs have three extensions on them, so plenty of room. And they always freerange when I'm at home. Nicola
  8. On Saturday I am getting a 'chicken of fate' . Friends have just lost a chook leaving them with one lone girl, and their current situation means they can't take on any more at the moment so asked if I could find her a home - so I have - with ME !! and I have come up with a cunning plan , bear with me here.... One 'classic' only has 2 ex-bats so the idea is that the new girl will go in with them. I intend to put her in the empty broody coop for a week to let her settle into her new enviroment (and of course quarantine her - just in case) and then let her freerange with the ex-bats to introduce them. But I was wondering, should I pop out and get another girl and put her in the broody coop as well and let them bond, and then move the two of them in to the ex-bats together, because as we all know, it's easier to introduce 2:2 rather than 1:2. But....I do have Boris, who sleeps in the shed but when he comes out in the morning alternates each day between the two classics (so he can share his love ). If I just had the 'Chicken of Fate' I'm not sure Boris will be able keep the two ex-bats in check and stop them from picking on the new girl as his track record of keeping them in order when they are all out FRing is not very good - if two girls have a bust up he will charge over but then the girls turn and beat him up and he just skulks off. just wondered what you would do, what would be the best plan , I don't want the new girl to be badly picked on coz she's a lone newcomer. Nicola
  9. Now I feel terrible !! Just before going to bed I decided to throw the eggs, and then thought 'crack them first' to see if they were fertile - to know that Boris is up to the job . Bertha's two eggs were not fertile, but Lily and Henrietta (ex-bat) eggs were. Henrietta's embryonic chick was so tiny, half the size of Lily's and was clearly dead but Lily's was still alive and now I've killed it. Feel awful, but it was too late once the egg was cracked and I suppose realistically I couldn't have hatched a chick in the airing cupboard. Any idea why these two were fertile but not Bertha's?? Lily and the ex-bats are his faveourites (as they are the most co-operative) but he does mate with Bertha. Could it be her size, as being an Orp. she is larger than him. I know your right, Laurie, as she has already smashed three eggs already. I was so excited two weeks ago when Gladys went broody but this time it has been a complete failure, mark it down to experience I suppose and don't try Gladys again. I need Lily to go broody again as she was brilliant last year. Nicola
  10. Gladys has decided that she's had enough and has abandoned her eggs. Over the last few days she kept getting off the eggs and has been in and out of the house like a yo-yo, and having watched her since I've got in from work she was permanently in the run and the eggs were stone cold . I have put her back with the other girls and she is not at all bothered about leaving the eggs. It's a shame as candleing showed they were developing - perhaps Gladys was too young (she's not quite a year), or she just is not a good broody. I know this sounds daft, but at the moment I've put the eggs in the airing cupboard as I can't bring myself to bin them, though I know they will have to go. It's a shame that I can't encourage Lily to go broody as I could try popping them under her as she did such a brilliant job last year. Nicola
  11. Oh dear, I'm back again with the same news - another egg smashed today, making three in total she's destroyed and leaving her with only four eggs now. She may make a good Mum (if she ever gets that far) but she def. is NOT a good broody. Everyone she has destroyed has been a Bertha egg (the ones I really wanted) and I am in two minds about letting her continue, but as I was planning to candle them at the weekend I'll see what they look like and decide then. I have heard that a broody can tell an unfertile egg and get rid of it, but can they tell this early on ?? or is she just a heavy-footed oaf who keeps stomping on her eggs. Perhaps Boris is a 'Jaffa' and Gladys knows it . Nicola
  12. My Splash Orpington (prob. about 4 years old now) is def. a girl and has had the most humungous, stonking pair of spurs since very young, and they keep growing longer so I have to clip them every few months - so I don't think it necessarily means that yours is turning into a boy (well I hope ) Nicola
  13. She's done it again, and crushed another egg - another Bertha egg. I hope she doesn't turn out to be a heavy-footed oaf who manages to crush all her potential babies before they hatch Nicola
  14. Hats off to you, Millihelen, you're obviously made of stern stuff . I found I needed the painkillers for about 3-4 days, then I was fine without them. I was driving once I went back to work and found it OK, the only problem was releasing the hand brake when it was my left hand, it's a bit tricky leaning across yourself to do it with your right hand. Nicola.
  15. Ah, 'nerve conduction test', I couldn't remember what it was called , and yes - OUCH. If you've not had the steroid injections then they may work if your CTS is mild, but they made no difference to me at all, perhaps coz my nerve damage was severe. My fault really as I had the symptems come and go for about five years and just put up with it, but then when they returned again they were so bad I was getting the numbness etc during the day as well which made work very difficult. The surgery really wasn't that bad as long as you take the painkillers for a few days after, the injection for the local was a bit uncomfortable though, as was the stitches coming out later. I would say that after it was more of a nuisance as you don't realise how much you do with your hand until it is out of action and there is so much you can't do for a while, but it doesn't take long to return. I also had some strength tests done before the surgery and didn't realise how weak my hands had become, but that has inproved greatly since the surgery. I was told that CTS can return even after surgery as the under active thyroid can cause a continuation of nerve damage, but so far I've had no problems. I am on 100mg a day for my thyroid. Nicola
  16. Hi Jules I have had CTS in both hands, and had to have surgery - one op was 18 months ago and the other the year before. I had suffered from CTS on and off for about five years and eventually was referred like you, but you will find that the consultant probably won't make an immediate decision about surgery as there are a few tests to do first - I had steroid injections in the wrists which made no difference, and then an electric current test (don't know the proper name for it, but they attach things to your arm and fingertips and run a mild electric pulse through to see how long it takes the pulse to go from elbow to fingertips and this assesses the extent of the nerve damage) and my results came back as 'quite severe' in left hand and 'severe' for the right. That, and the fact that I have an underactive thyroid (this can also cause nerve damage) made the decision that surgery was needed. The op was really quick under local anasthetic (spl?) and you come out so bandaged up it as though you are wearing a boxing glove . The only thing I would say is that you need strong pain killers for a few days coz when the local wears off it hurts like hell, but it is managable with the pain killers. I was off work for two weeks each time. I do the same sort of job, computer, writing etc. and when back at work I found I could'nt grip a pen hard enough to write at first but as everything healed then I was able to do more. I found the outer wound healed very quickly but it takes a lot longer for everything to heal and settle down 'inside'. Now I have no problems, the only thing I find I can't do is when gardening I can't dig into hard soil with a hand tool as the end of the handle pushes against the op area in the wrist and that hurts a bit but other than that there is no pain or discomfort at all now and I am very glad I had the surgery done. Hope the info is of help, if you've got any more questions feel free to ask. Hopefully someone else will come along with their experiences as well. Nicola
  17. Thanks for that Redwing, that was what I was hoping. She is very settled now she is on the floor of the house, so now she should be OK. Gladys is a tallish girl and I think she was too cramped in the nestbox. Nicola
  18. Good luck to Sprinkle My Gladys has had a bit of a disaster only 24 hours in , so I'm praying that her eggs will be OK. Nicola
  19. Oh dear, after sitting for only 24 hours, Gladys has had a disaster. When I checked on her last night she had managed to crush one egg completely, and one had fallen out of the nest onto the floor of the house. She then decided to sit on that one and left the other four in the nest to go cold . There isn't a lot of head room in the nest box so I wonder if she has accidentaly done this whilst moving about. I have moved all the eggs into the corner on the floor of the house, and added another Bertha egg - I'm hoping that as she had only been sitting for 24 hours that this will be OK and that the ones that got cold shouldn't be too affected.
  20. Well, she wasn't at all happy about being moved last night - there was lots of shouting and screaming for a bit - but she soon settled down on the eggs. This morning I opened the house at 8am and had a nosey, and she was sat happily and have just gone out to check again and she has brought herself out, eaten the mealworms, pooed, and is back on the eggs again . What a good girl. Nicola
  21. My boys from last year went to the local butcher, who was happy to do the deed and prepare them for me for just £3 per bird. It is something I feel I should learn to do myself, but while he is only going to charge £3 I'll stick with him. Nicola
  22. After last years success of hatching and raising the boys for the table, I have decided to have another go as Gladys has just gone broody. Gladys is the only girl chick that came from that hatching, and as all the boys except one went to the butcher (Boris managed to weadle his way into my heart so stayed) I am going to try and see if he is a 'real man' and set some of Bertha's eggs under Gladys. Bertha is my big Orp. and lays large eggs so I'm hoping this will give me bigger meat birds. Will move Gladys to the broody house tonight and set the eggs, hope the move doesn't unsettle her Will let you know how she gets on, Nicola.
  23. *waves* Hello, I'm over here in Basildon. Enjoy the chooks when they arrive, one of the most important piece of equipment is a comfy chair in the garden as you'll be sitting and 'chook watching' for hours . Nicola
  24. I think Hettie is determined to be a House Chicken as she was in the house quite a few times on Sunday and I was forever turfing her out. If the weather's nice I always leave the back door open so the dogs can come and go into the garden as well - but I've never had a chook before so determined to be in the house !! Several times I looked back at the house from the garden to see her in the lounge looking out at me - and a couple of times she had taken a friend in with her as well. Once, when I went inside she shouted at me from the landing, and whilst sitting on the sofa with a well deserved cuppa she wandered in and tried to get up with me !!!!. She has ruined her reputation though of being 'house trained' as there were a few poohs that day. Nicola
  25. Another sunny day, so again the back door is open and while I worked in the garden I thought they were all out with me - but when I went in to have a sit down with a cup of tea I heard that familiar, quiet 'bock bock' coming from behind the telly !! and when I looked....................... and when I pulled the curtain back to let her out I noticed she'd left me a present......... Sorry that one's a bit blurry - but at least it wasn't a poo . Nicola

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