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Everything posted by Banus

  1. Hello all, Has anyone ever heard of / experienced this before. We have an Eglu Go with a 3m run. Our 2 girls are fit and healthy and are regularly cleaned out. Now, over the last 2 months we've noticed that everytime we change their bedding with fresh clean meadow hay bought from Pets at Home, within a few hours they chuck it out into the run and appear to be happy laying their eggs on the empty plastic nesting tray. We've tried changing their straw but it does not make any difference, they just chuck it out into their run and don't want to appear to have any straw in their nesting box. Any ideas why they are doing this as we have had them for over 2 years and they've only just started doing this?
  2. This could be thae answer as I would like them to have their bath and like you said when they flicked into the run they wont turn the nice clean woodchips into a mush of mud and wood that never dries out. I used to put the woodchips onto the soil but the girls quickly scratched through them and the soil they dug up quickly mushed with the chips making a right mess. That's why I put a tarpaulin down to seperate the woodchips from the mud and it works really well.
  3. Hi, We have an Eglu Go with a 3m run. In the run I used a large clear plastic storeage box - (just imagine a massive plastic lunch box) large enough for 3 chckens to dust bathe in. In the box I put some fine top soil I bought from Homebase. They loved it but the problem was that when they bathed in it they flicked the soil over the sides onto the wood chippings in the run. Within a very short time the bath (box) was empty and all the soil was in the run. Even with an Eglu rain cover over the run the woodchippings got wet and with the soil from the bath it turned the run into a mud bath. So I have now changed the wood chippings (and tarpaulin they are placed on) but have not bothered to replace the box with soil as it would obviously happen all over again. So my question is........ is a dust bath absolutely necessary or is it a luxury they can do without especially as they stand on their branch (which is in the run) and preen themselves. Also the wet mud can't be very pleasant for them keeping them cold and wet. If I put the bath in the garden would they bother using it as when they're out of the run they're busy free ranging? Is the dust bath absolutely necessary for their health? Any advice gratefully received.
  4. Bathing Chickens? From this post this activity seems quite popular. Never done it - should I be? I use a large plastic box (stack and store type) with 5" of dry fine topsoil in it for them to bathe in. I'd have thought I'd be told off for bathing my girls as it washes away all their natural oils / protection etc etc.
  5. Bit of a dilema for me too. We have powerful outdoor lighting that turns the rear garden into daylight when turned on at night. I used to put it on in the late afternoon to give our 3 girls another hours daylight thinking that they spend enough time being 'couped up' from 4pm - 7.30am. But then thought that I was 'artificially' keeping them up / awake, so I've abandoned the practice and let nature take its course. Not sure if it does any harm. It was quite funny though to see them run from their Eglu go when the light came on thinking it was morning already!!
  6. A great question Henergy as there must be quite a few of us just about to go into our first winter. I too were concerned when I heard the hail beating against the bedroom window in the early hours of this morning and was going to ask if the was a chicken house heater on the market. I wont be asking that now
  7. Very sorry to hear about your experiences and thanks for sharing this with us all. Hope all will be well soon. I have an Eglu Go with a 3m extended run - as per my avatar. The run is staked down at the edges all the way round and as far as I can see is fox proof. We always lock them in the Go at night as soon as they've gone in. I always thought these Eglu products were bullet / fox proof but as we read here obviously not. I live on the edge of a field that I know has foxes in it and consequently we never allow the girls to free range if we go out. They get locked in their run. I could do with knowing if anyone ever had fox problems with an Eglu Go so I can beef up security if necessary.
  8. I was going to post a thread on this subject, so as this is relevant can I ask a quick Q on the subject of Poultry Spice Dosage? The instructions state a teaspoon on daily food for 10 hens. Not sure why they state 10 hens as few of us actually have 10 chickens and I have only have 3. So I sprinkle half a teaspoon in their food every other day or so. If I put half a teaspoon every day (as suggested) it would be too concentrated. So, so that I get the proportions / doseage correct, how do you measure it out? ps - my girls drank the ACV - but lifeguard seems to be te popular choice which I might try.
  9. Minty - Yep - that WAS my set up. If you look at my avatar you'll see that I too have a clear plastic cover for the first 2m but the sun shade covering the last metre isn't waterproof and the rain water pours through it like a culinder which used to soak the earth / woodchips turning it into a mud bath. I've now modified the last metre and covered the sunshade with a piece of plastic sheeting. Now totally waterproof and a little more windproof for the months ahead.
  10. All sorted. I bought one of those clear plastic stack and store bins approx 2' long x 18" wide with quite steep sides and it doesn't take up much room in the run. Filled with about 4" inches of fine dry soil and they dived in as soon as I'd set it up.
  11. I thought about a cat litter tray but thought the sides were a bit low and after two 'flicks' the whole of the contents would be out in the run! UUmmmmmmmmmmmm?
  12. That's a good idea. It needs to have reasonably high sides as I don't want them to empty the dirt all over their cleanish woodchips. Can't be too large though as it has to go in their Eglu run ( which I have extended to 3m) and I still want them to have room to roam around in the run.
  13. I've read many times on here that its important that your chickens stay occupied and dont get bored. So I went to our local wood and found them a large branch for them to climb on in the garden however they rarely used it as they were busy scratching up the lawn So I cut the end off and installed it in their run. They love it and are always either walking along it or are all sat side by side off the cold ground.
  14. Our 3 girls spend most of the day in their 3m Eglu run with woodchips for a base - see avatar pic. The woodchips ideal but are too co"Ooops, word censored!" for them to have a good bath in I need to 'install' a dustbath in their run. I have some dry clean earth but what can I put it in - bearing in mind that it can't be too large as it has to go in their run. Any ideas gratefully received.....
  15. Yep - I considered slabs which willl be the next and final solution if the membrane doesn't work. So far so good.
  16. Just caught this post. Congrats on joining the clan. You're life will never be the same......I'll leave it al that! They're amazing pets and give you some much enjoyment. I've only had Lilly, Valentine and Amber for 5 months but have learn't so much in that time and so will you. This forum is amazing - full of well informed advice. Enjoy and welcome. ps Brilliant pics.
  17. Some great suggestions there.......thanks. All sorted.....for a while at least. The mud bath situation was unbearable to look at and couldn't have been very pleasant for our girls to spend time in. So I lifted the Eglu Go with its 3m run off its base and intended riddling / washing the wood chips to re-use them. However after only 10 mins I decided that It would have taken hours and I'd spend more in water than to replace the woodchips. So I decided to bin them, lay a heavy duty weather proof tarpaulin in the base which I have new covered in nice new clean woodchips. So now I have a barrier between the chips and the soil underneath which will keep them clean. I'll see how it goes but at the time are hopeful. At this time I didn't have the time / funds to start laying slabs but this is a massive improvement. However I now know that laying woodchips on the ground is a big no no!
  18. OK - to summarise I'm going for Dogmothers advice as she's always on the money. There will be treats but a bit more limited and health focused. The hob"Ooops, word censored!"s have got to go. I'll introduce pasta in limited quantities but in my defence only went for more interesting food to break up the bordom factor. I hung a rosey apple on a wire from my Eglu Go roof to give them something to do before I went to work but before I got off the drive it was gone! Branches / or something to climb on is a great idea but with the limited height of an Eglu Go (see avatar) my options are again limited. Some really interesting comments / advice on this thread though.
  19. Just checked the nesting box and we've had a perfect full size egg with a granite shell! I wonder if it was the recent fireworks that just caused a fright and it wasn't the treats after all?
  20. CB - nice one! How can you not treat them? Pasta - now there's a thought. just plain or do you serve it up with a inice bolognese sauce and a bottle of Chianti? I'm on my way over! Seriously - how do you serve it up?
  21. We usually make our 3 girls a dish of porridge made from warm water and their Garvo pellets which they love as its easier to eat / digest first thing on a cold autumn morning - and warmer too. However, I slowly got carried away and started adding half a banana, a few sultanas, a single weetabix and a splash of warm milk. I have to say that it looked and smelt delicious and everytime I handed it over they nearly mugged me! Woofed it down in no time. After only 2/3 days we started to notice that one egg was produced without a shell and the next day same again but the shell was detached and thin like a rubber glove. After a little research (on here) it seems that too many treats were possibly to blame. We're going back to normal Garvo porridge now and I'm pretty confident that normal egg production will resume shortly. I would mention that the girls are lively, alert and appear to be really healthy and happy as they should be being fed on that lot! At the time I didn't really think that any harm was being done as all the ingredients were healthy and foods that are recommended to give to chickens - probably just a little too much? We'll see
  22. Thanks both for that. I'm just planning on putting a barrier / membrane down to seperate the woodchips from the soil to keep them clean and dry. If yuom don't it will soon turn into a big brown soup! Material weed prevention fabric is no good as it is too thin and the girls would soon peck / scratch their way through it. My neighbour has a similar product thats made from thick plastic which is porous, I'm waiting to hear from him as to where he bought it from.
  23. Yep - I have rain covers too but the soil has now mixed with the woodchip making it a bit of a mess and by putting something between the chips and the soil would keep it clean and dryer for the forthcoming months.
  24. There are some really funny comments on here and unfortunately I can associate with most of them. When our girls are in their run and see me at the kitchen window they go mental until I give in and let them out. I usually give in just to give the neighbours a bit of piece but then they trash the garden. Weekend lie inns? Not a chance the squarking starts at 7am when I wander into te garden in my wellies and dressing gown (in all weathers) and it doesn't stop there as the squarking continues until I've done them their breakfast. They've got me well trained
  25. Have a look at the info on this thread that I post a while ago on Woodchip issues. Yes B&Q for some reason are stopping supplying it. http://club.omlet.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=81985 ASHJC - just out of interest what do you put underneath your woodchip as I'm trying to prevent ti coming into contact with the soil below and turning into one big brown soup when it rains. Fabric weed control is no good as the girls will tear it to shreads in no time.

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