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hinterglem

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Chicken Eggspert

Chicken Eggspert (2/19)

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  1. Just wondering whether mealworms should be regarded as a 'treat food' and only given in moderation, or whether it is good for them so can be given liberally?
  2. About 4 months (we were told they were 3 months old when we got them about a month ago), although Nugget (black) is much bigger than Lily (blue), so I guess there is a bit of an age gap.
  3. Thanks. It's interesting how their personalities are starting to come out now they've been with us for a few weeks (to start with they all seemed exactly the same). Fifi is very laid back friendly, Lily is quite bold but will only accept contact on her own terms (if I have a handful of food she will sit on my hand so the others can't get at it!), and Nugget is rather shy (might be because we had to give her a bath when she got poo on her back).
  4. Is it wrong to have a favourite? lol. Can't seem to embed video here, so here is a link:
  5. One step ahead of you there! lol. We already have a water butt, which catches more rainwater than we can actually use. We also have tomatoes, garlic, blueberries, strawberries, and probably other stuff I don't know about growing in pots (that's my wife's department!). I also make my own wine and beer, and we make our own bread, so we're well on the way to self-sufficiency! Still waiting for that first egg though...
  6. It wasn't covered when I bought it - I made the roof myself (see http://club.omlet.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=82393). Here's a pic of the whole thing (I have yet to tidy up the landscape fabric and put paving slabs round the outside): I got the posts from here: http://premiernetting.co.uk/catalog/metal-fencing-pins-pack-p-456.html, but I think you can get them in Wickes as well. Initially I also had green plastic netting, but they were able to squeeze their way through the holes! So now it is 25mm pvc coated wire netting (from B&Q) and it seems to be containing them so far.
  7. I had the same problem - the first night I caught them and put them in the coop. They weren't impressed. The second night I tried using a torch. They ignored it, so I had to catch them again. The third night I bribed them up the ramp with food then gave them a little nudge, which was a LOT easier! The fourth night they put themselves to bed without any assistance and have done so every night since.
  8. Lol - I think it is some kind of wood stain, not blood stain! We got a builder to knock a hole in the wall, I screwed a small metal splint to the joists to provide support, and you can buy 'tunnel extensions' for cat flaps which glue together (I also plastered silicone all over the joins to keep the rain out). The really cool part is that a microchip sensor is discreetly hidden inside the wall so that only our cat can open the flap (with no need for a collar).
  9. I've had so much help from everyone here, and being such a newbie I feel like there is not much I can give back. But I thought this little 'how to' might be helpful for some people who want to make a roof for a run out of corrugated plastic. As I discovered to my chagrin, if you plonk a piece of corrugated plastic on a workbench, and attack it with a jigsaw, you end up with splinters flying everywhere and your expensive plastic cracked and useless! After some research and experimentation, I found a method of cutting this stuff that seems to work reasonably well, albeit a slow process. 1) Measure carefully and mark out where you want the cut. You will not be able to guide it by eye, as the plastic will bend and warp a bit while you are cutting. If your jigsaw has a laser guide, you can get away with just marking the top of each 'bump', and using the laser to aim for it as you cut. 2) Carefully stick masking tape over the line to be cut, making sure you get good contact with the plastic all the way along (if it is pulled taught and not in contact with the plastic, there is a risk of cracking). 3) Weigh down the work as close to the cut as possible whilst still allowing room for the saw. Make sure the plastic does not hang over the edge of the workbench where you will start the cut, as any vibrations will cause it to crack. If it hangs over the other end, that doesn't matter, you will just have to move it along later so that the part you are cutting is held firmly against the workbench. 4) Start cutting with a hacksaw or junior hacksaw. If you try launching into it with the jigsaw straight away, you guessed it - it will crack. So start it off by cutting a few centimetres with a hacksaw first. 5) Place the jigsaw blade a few millimetres in front of the edge you are about to cut, and let the blade get up to speed before engaging with the plastic. Use a thin metal-cutting blade on a fast setting (not a wood-cutting blade). If your jigsaw has a pendulum feature, turn it off as it will generate a lot more vibration. Practise on a waste piece first if at all possible. 6) Move the jigsaw slowly, especially on the 'uphill' sections. When the blade is going uphill, there is a much greater risk of cracking, and you have to go very very slowly - 1mm per second or less. You can go a bit faster on the downhill and flat sections (this might depend on the direction of the teeth on your jigsaw blade). Every now and then, stop and blow or wipe away the dust, and move the weights further along if necessary - always making sure to keep vibration to a minimum. When stopping mid-cut, wait for the blade to stop moving before withdrawing from the plastic or you risk bashing it and ruining your work. 7) I found it easiest to cut the final 'bump' with a hacksaw starting from the opposite end rather than trying to guide the jigsaw at arms-length - the risk of cracking seems to be greater at the end. Once you've finished all that remains is to remove the masking tape and admire your handiwork. Any fine detail should be cut with a hacksaw, but following the same principles of weighing down the work and using masking tape. When drilling holes for screws, I also recommend using masking tape, and only drill into the flat sections. Hope that helps someone! (I know it would have helped me, and saved me a few quid if I'd known all that a couple of days ago!). Russ.
  10. It's the largest of our 3 very small chickens! She's a pekin bantam, about 3 months old.
  11. Thanks - I gave her a bath. The first thing she did when I put her in the water was duck her head under! I washed her with soapy water, then rinsed her with fresh water with a little drop of vinegar in (helps neutralise the alkaline soap apparently), then towel dried her. Overall she was very good, but she didn't like the hair dryer. It is fairly sunny today so I'll let her dry out naturally.

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