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kirsty226

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About kirsty226

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    Freshly Laid Egg
  1. Thanks for all your valuable comments and advice! To update, I took a mite to the vet who thought it was a harvest mite, which apparently lives in the garden and which the cat could very easily be bringing into the house as she likes to lie in long grass etc. So we banned her (the cat, not the vet!) from the house apart from the kitchen, and we fumigated the rest of the house. No more bites for us. But I wasn't overly happy keeping the cat out all the time, and neither was she. I'd thoroughly cleaned the eglu but there wasn't really a major infestation there - there are a few red mite but they're generally kept under control with regular clening, spraying, and I do use DE in the corners (but not on the chooks). BUT when it came to emptying the kitchen bin into the wheely bin outside I was horrified to find a massive infestation in and on the wheely bin!! Thousands of grey, hungry red mites inside!! Apparently they will bite humans and pets if there are no birds around for them to feed on. I had put some old bedding, bagged up, in there after spraying the eglu with mite spray, so I can only assume there had been some survivors who have multiplied beyond anything I could have imagined! Eurghhh. So the cat has been sitting on top of the bin, as they do, and getting them in her fur. Mystery solved and sorted, and I am now an expert in mites. Unlike our vet.
  2. Hi, I would worry about them bringing red mite in - our cat seems to be bringing them in from the eglu to our beds on her fur
  3. I think our cat is bringing redmites into our house. We have a small colony (?) of redmite in the chicken coop which I am trying deperately to kill off, but am only really succeeding in keeping the numbers down. However, we have a long haired 1 yr old cat who loves sitting on top of the eglu and watching our 2 chickens. I think she must be bringing them into the house on her fur, then jumping on the beds because over the last 3 days, my children and I have beeen getting bitten in bed. Today, my eldest said she found a couple of tiny pale grey bugs on her, during first lesson at school and I had the same this morning - 2 tiny bugs on my arm. They looked like red mite before they've eaten. I'm frantically googling, and have found that redmite can indeed infest human homes but there is little to suggest what treatment would be safe for our beds. I'm getting the kids to strip their beds as I write and I intend covering them the beds not the kids!) with dichotomous earth then hoovering it off before bedtime. I'd thought about hte smoke bombs but we have tropical fish and they're pretty sensitive to insecticides etc..... Any other suggestions???
  4. Just to update - I haven't got a broody cage so just kept Chelsea out of the eglu during the day and put a metal grille over the nesting box during the night so she had to sit on the roosting bars. After a couple of breezy days snuggling into the soil on the base of the run, she had enough and has snapped out of it. I gave the eglu a good clean and will hopefully be getting a new chook in the next couple of days
  5. We sadly lost one of our two chooks last weekend and planned to get a new one Saturday as company for the surviving one, Chelsea. In the mean time, Chelsea seems to have become broody spending most of the day sitting in the nesting box and growling when I go near her. She hasn't eaten much over the past 2days and has done the most humongous poos. She was sitting on one egg which I managed to remove yesterday and she has laid another today, which I have also removed. I have closed the eglu door for the day now I have her outside. My quandary is whether to try to integrate a new chook into this situation or to wait until Chelsea has settled down. She is a Speckaldy hybrid so may be prone to broodiness. Or would it help her - maybe she's lonely and hoping for company! Any advice is more than welcome....
  6. Thanks for the reply. Sadly Penny died within a couple of days. She was able to drink when we brought it to where she was lying ( I brought her into the conservatory in a cardboard box) but wasn't interested in food. Her crop seemed fine but she was just too weak to stay awake. At least she went peacefully.
  7. My 3 1/2 year old hybrid hen has become lethargic and unsteady on her feet over the last week or so. She tends to be standing with her eyes shut most of the time, and was sleep with her head in a bush the other day! She can't get up the step in the garden and is drinking lots. Her poo is watery and white. She stopped laying last winter. Today her comb looks a bit shriveled and dark, and she's not made it out of the eglu into her run. I've read so much conflicting advise, and my gut feeling is that she's dying of old age, being a hybrid with a shorter life expectancy. Any thoughts??
  8. Our poor Rosie escaped on Friday whilst a neighbour looked after her for a few days. A pile of white feathers found this morning in a nearby garden... Thanks for all the eggs, Rosie. RIP.
  9. We took the plunge, and got Penny (hybrid) and Rosie (white leghorn) on Friday after school. While I got the box from the car, the girls chose the hens - hence why we have the leghorn (try telling a smitten 4year old their chosen hen may be a skittish variety..!). Anyway, we've spent the weekend with them and they're both eating out of my hand already! And trying to eat my engagement ring They're great, and with only one more day to work this week I think the bonding will be fine. Rosie is a bit more timid than Penny though she's only a couple of steps behind her, and the tasty morsels in my hand tend to have already gone by the time she's ready to peck. But she'll learn I'm sure! I'm so glad we've had some decent weather to get those first tentative steps out the way. We'll be introducing them to the garden by the weekend so am looking forward to that. And I'll post a piccy when I can work out how!
  10. Thanks for all the debate - there's obviously no straight forward answer (as if there ever is)!! I'm going to go for it and we'll make a family effort to spend maximum time with them as much as poss before the bad weather. My two little girls aged 4 and 7 years will be an active part of the caring for them, so the chooks will be lucky to get any peace to be honest!
  11. I work part time so I'm at home for 4 days a week. My OH works from home sometimes so I'm sure he find the chooks a welcome(?!) distraction. He's quite excited about them coming though won't admit it! I think we'll go for it this weekend....
  12. I'm planning to get hybrids. I'm chomping at the bit at the moment, what with the current heatwave, though I know the nights are a-drawing in... Interesting about the pure breeds though.
  13. Hi, I'm planning on getting my first 2 chickens very soon but am a little nervous about news of yet another harsh winter on its way. Does anyone think I should wait until spring to get them or should I get them now? My thoughts are that I'd be able to handle them and spend more quality time with them in better weather so I'd be more confident coping with them next winter. But then again, I do want them now!!! Any advice?

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