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RubyandRosie

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Chicken Eggspert

Chicken Eggspert (2/19)

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  1. Does anyone know any tips to prevent my chickens' water freezing in the daytime please? We are looking for a non-electrical solution as their Cube is a long way from the house. Many thanks.
  2. Hubby has put bolts on the egg port, on the lift up part at the back,and we also have two padlocks on the WIR. It is like Fort Knox, but at least our 3 girls are now safe.
  3. Does anyone have any suggestions for the times when our 3 hens are locked in their run for several days? My husband does not let them free-range when I am away (with my work), as he has trouble catching them. I feel sorry for them, as they are used to supervised free-ranging several times a day when I am at home. A friend has suggested putting in some branches with buds on for them to peck at. Do you have any other suggestions please? We have a Cube with a WIR. I have placed several logs inside for them to climb on, and also a plant pot with some veg in, but within a day any greenery has been munched away. Thanks for any suggestions.
  4. Thanks Redsunset and Lotty. Woke up this morning to about 2 foot of snow and had a lot of digging out to do, but they were fine overnight even though some of the snow had got in the Cube through the vent holes. I have put a couple of bath mats over the top of the run (secured with plant pots to weigh them down) and garden tables on their sides to stop the snow coming in on the sides of the run - it is surprising how warm I was able to make it once the wind was blocked out. Will buy some more heavy duty plastic side panels too. Thanks for your tips x
  5. Just picked up my 3 new chickens on Saturday. It was a warm day and we got them settled into their Cube and WIR. Today the snow started and there was one foot of snow by the end of the day when I locked them away. I made several visits to break the ice in their frozen glug, and gave them warm porridge in late afternoon (which they loved but was frozen solid within an hour). I rubbed vaseline into their combs and wattles before putting them to bed to prevent frostbite. Any more tips for helping them cope in this terrible weather? All advice appreciated. I am nervous what I will find tomorrow morning, as it is still snowing heavily. I hope the Cube is warm enough for them overnight - have never seen as much snow as today.
  6. My two darling hens were stolen last October from our Cube walk in run. We were gutted as they were family pets. The thief let themself into our garden from an adjoining path. They even stole the eggs. They just undid the doors of the extension and helped themselves to our two chickens. We are now getting new hens on Saturday, and are planning to lock the extension door with padlocks from now on. I would also like to make the rest of the Cube more secure, to stop any more thieves getting access to our chickens either through the lift up lid or through the egg port. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to do this, using bolts etc? I realise it will involve drilling into the plastic, but am not sure of the best way to secure it. We are in rural France where crime is extremely low. We are gutted to have lost our lovely pet chickens to a thief, and determined to protect our next chickens against any opportunists.
  7. I have had Ruby and Rosie about 6 weeks now I think it is. Ruby started laying about 10 days ago and we have had one perfect (although small) egg every day. She is a Miss Pepperpot or something very similar. She is very small herself and looks like she has a deformed beak, so she does not eat as much as Rosie. But otherwise she is a perfect little girl, and very placid and easy to handle. Rosie on the other hand has grown GINORMOUS!!!! She is from the same breeder (I bought them at a market in France) and looks like a Gingernut Ranger. I thought they must be the same age, as they were the same size when I got them. But Rosie does not lay any eggs at all. She eats about 3 times as much as Ruby and is greedy and aggressive (she will even jump up and bite my finger as I walk along). Do you have any ideas for me how to start her laying. She is not agressive with Ruby, and even sits in the nesting box with her sometimes as she is laying. But she does not lay herself. Many thanks for any advice.
  8. Thanks everyone for your replies....I think I will just let them get on with digging their own dust baths in the soil, as they seem happy enough. I just wanted to check it wasn't a necessity that I was depriving them of. They are such happy little souls and I love them to bits!
  9. I am new to chicken keeping and have had my two ladies for about 3 weeks. I keep them in a cube. We have had lots of rain but now the dry weather is here and I see them rolling around in ecstacy in the grass, looking like they are cleaning theselves. Can someone please advise about dust baths. Is there something you buy like sawdust for them, and do you just throw it into the run, or do they need a special container? I see Omlet sells them but is this necessary? Can I just use an old cat litter tray? (cleaned out of course LOL) Or are they just as happy without a container? I only let them free range when I'm in the garden. I am ordering a cube extension so will put the dust bath in the run. Many thanks.
  10. I am in France and bought Ruby and Rosie from the market - my French isn't very good so I wasn't able to ask how old they were (well actually I was so excited about getting them that I forgot). One's comb is starting to turn red so how much longer until we get eggs? Is it within a couple of weeks or longer? Also it was interesting to read about the corn. The layers pellets we buy over here have HUGE HARD KERNELS OF CORN that my girls just turn their beaks up at as they are rock hard, and there is so much wastage. I was going to boil them up to soften them for them, but had never heard of the corn not being good for egg production (if I have read this correctly)? Should I stop feeding corn completely until they start laying? Sorry for so many questions.
  11. Coppers, thank you - that is really good advice - yes I am happy with just 2 for now, so I will wait until losing one and then introduce 2 more at that stage. Leeloo - thank you for that blog - that was so kind of you! I'm glad that little Buff Orpington survived - what a lovely trio they made in the pic once they had calmed down Kim xx
  12. Thanks Karen. That's what I suspected. My two are almost LOVING to each other like sisters - it is very sweet to watch, as they groom each other, follow each other around and snuggle together even in the "garden" of the cube. Hard to imagine what effect a 3rd one would have on their happy home - but I could imagine they are capable of being vicious. Kind regards Kim
  13. Thanks everyone for your advice. I want to give my girls a fab life! So happy to have them, and to know you all on this forum. Kind regards Kim

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