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Beantree

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Everything posted by Beantree

  1. If in doubt bring them in; better safe than sorry. They don't look very big or well feathered and they can be getting cold during the day. Excessive cold runs them down and they can get ill. Without seeing the coop and its location I can't be sure leaving them out is OK at the moment. We bring our more fragile adults in at night if we feel it necessary. The handling will be beneficial long term as well.
  2. Turns out not thinning the carrots worked out OK; just dig out a section and discard the tiny ones. The parsnips are doing really well now that the South side has been covered in moss (gathered from the fields) to stop them drying out. Last week of tomatoes have been discarded because the skins split. We had this problem last year after some rain and it happens with cherries as well. Still some on the plants to ripen, but with the weather set to turn cold and wet I doubt they will get a chance. Lost most of our Kiwi fruit to sunburn, after the 6 weeks drought caused the leaves to fall off and removed their shade. Nearly everything has finished now so it's time to prepare the beds and then put membrane over them to stop the weeds growing, then plan what's going where next year. We have an extra bed after deciding strawberries are really a waste of time and water and we are better buying them from the market.
  3. That sounds horrendous Daphne. I remember getting caught up in a fire on Zante which had been started deliberately to discredit the current Political Party. Slowly following a police car leading the way, because the smoke was too bad to see the road properly, a bush alongside spontaneously combusted in the heat and burned my arm. Shouldn't have risked it in an open top car. Still no rain and the forecast is still too vague to know if we will get any. We're watering all the bushes we want to save, so our bill is going to be pretty high!
  4. Apparently the French situation is the second worst in Europe, Spain being close first and UK a fair distant third. Portugal is way down the list. M*****ille and Bordeaux are under restrictions, both having massive infection rates around 275 per 100,000 people. Both are saying their health support is near overloaded so why have they left it so late to tighten up? Hopefully the UK hasn't made the same mistakes as our numbers were at the same level just two weeks ago. Can't help thinking tourism has been a factor, especially as the season has been extended into September because of record late bookings. We're still staying tightly locked up. Friend asked if he could visit and stay over but I reluctantly had to say no. He's a pretty high risk with both working, two children who were both at school, but now one is awaiting test results and the school is closed because one pupil tested positive.
  5. Very smokey this morning; made my eyes sore. Soon cleared again to 22C and cloudy. Might be 31C later but, unlike Summer, it does now cool down in the evening. BBC says storms down here on Sunday and as usual the French forecasts are rather vague, so waiting and hoping.
  6. They won't starve themselves Heidihill. We changed one of our feeders to a 'trigger' unit (because of the sparrows) and it took 2 weeks for them to work out how to use it. I used to go into the run and show them how it worked once a day, so really they ate almost nothing in that period. I would stop the crumble completely and just use pellets. Perhaps try pellets in a dog bowl on the floor? You may be right about the new feeders; they don't recognise them yet.
  7. Due to be 35C here today and I may have to water the chicken runs again but, on the bright side, nothing is growing, even the weeds have stopped. So dry we can't risk any petrol powered equipment yet, in case a spark from the exhaust starts a wildfire, although there is only a little to do anyway. 25C is my ideal as well DM. Spring and Autumn are usually lovely, Winter is short (2 months last year) and Summer is far too dry and hot and pretty miserable unless you are on holiday. Finally solved our data allowance Ursula123. Sosh have an offer ending today of a 80Gb phone SIM for €16 a month which fortunately works in our mobile Wifi unit. Obviously the free calls and texts that come in the package can't be used, but we don't make/ send any anyway. We've just got to see the SFR contract ended, which had to be done by letter.
  8. Complained about the rain last post and now into the third week without any. The trees are really struggling and we've been leaf blowing already to tidy up. Nine weeks, a heatwave and only one inch of rain. This morning we had mist in the valley, which is unexpected as they don't start until late October usually. But then I caught the smell of smoke and thought someone had been silly enough to light a bonfire out of season and with a very high risk of it spreading. But the smoke disappeared quickly and i thought no more of it until I saw the news. Turns out it was smoke from the fires on the East coast of America which has been carried over the Atlantic and then stalled over most of France. I can still smell smoke and it's due to stay for the next week at least apparently.
  9. It sounds like some kind of digestive impaction/ blockage. It may be in her crop or further down, so is her crop empty? Green can be a result of what's been eaten, stress or infection, so if her crop is clear and there is no abdominal swelling (which may be peritonitis), I'd think the vet may want to prescribe a course of antibiotics? It's possible that internal inflammation due to infection is obstructing the digestion? The first thing I'd do here is stop her from eating; just give her water. I must add that we don't have the option of vet treatment here, so you've got a better chance of helping her than we would have.
  10. Mites can be brought into the coop by the hens. They can drop off wild birds and can also be brought in with new arrivals. They feed on the hens blood at night and hide in the coop during the day, otherwise the hens would see and eat them. The answer is to clean the coop regularly (red mites multiply at an alarming rate) and look out for signs of them or their activity. They usually cluster around the ends of the perch, but are very small and it needs good eyesight or a magnifying glass to spot them. As you have a plastic coop they will be much easier to deal with, should they arrive. I'm not a fan of chemicals and avoid using them wherever possible; our solution to an infestation is a steam cleaner. We haven't been troubled with red mite for years now and if you stay vigilant they will never become a major problem, but chances are one day they will arrive. So in the meantime clean regularly and keep looking.
  11. A light is not necessary in Winter C&C, they will just go in earlier, sleep longer and come out later. Adding a light can be used to extend the laying period, but I wouldn't recommend it. Chickens need a break from laying for the benefit of their health. Also putting a light on (early morning only) will need a coop large enough for them to move around and eat and drink. In our experience the resulting mess in the coop isn't worth the extra eggs.
  12. Based on my observations the ceacal ducts store digestive enzymes and are emptied once a day by a healthy chicken. They do make a great starter for a bad septic tank, if anyone has one.
  13. There won't be any big crowds this year Daphne for the Tour as parking on the cols is forbidden and the start is behind barriers. More doom this morning with 7400 new cases detected yesterday and hospital admissions rising. Spokesman for the Health Department said cases are rising exponentially and a second lockdown hasn't been ruled out. Mask wearing everywhere is now the norm, everyone has hand gel and knows the distancing rules so why we are in this situation puzzles me?
  14. Bells on trolleys is a great idea! News today is full of doom. 6100 new cases found, 21 Departments (Counties) classed as 'red', so partial shutdown, M*****ille recording 177 cases per 100,000 population in one day. Worryingly one of the 'red' Departments is next to us. They have said we are not heading for a second wave as such, but the trend is steadily worsening but is not 'out of control'. Schools re-opening next week with all staff wearing masks and no exceptions they said.
  15. After hoping for rain for the last two weeks it has arrived this morning and I'm fed up with it already. An earlier downpour filled the butts and we don't need any more thank you. Heard some thunder in the distance but nothing near and now the wind has strengthened carrying that fine drizzle that soaks everything, particularly the chicken's feeders. It's too late for crops or trees now, just means the grass will start growing like mad and the mowers will be out every day, which reminds me we need some more fuel.
  16. You could give them rearers pellets instead, but changes in feed can cause stress and perhaps best just to keep them on what they know.
  17. Sorry to hear that Suzana. It's always a shock when they go quickly, but really that's the best way. It sounds like a burst egg with the shell remaining inside her. She would have done a lot of exhausting pushing to get it out and that effort could easily lead to a heart attack, which is what I guess happened. Bathing her would normally help as it relaxes the muscles and often leads to a stuck egg popping out and it is important to keep her bottom clean anyway, to avoid fly strike. So nothing you could have done differently.
  18. Just been told there have been 2 cases of re-infection in Holland also Cattails. Our Dutch friends don't like the expense of disposable masks and leave them in the sun to get hot (above 60C) and then they re-use them. We re-use ours if they've only been worn for a few minutes in a shop and we've not been near anyone. Like us they only go out if they have to, not if they want to and there is a big difference in those two reasons.
  19. Saw on the UK news that France has imposed quarantine on British visitors, but no mention of that on French news channels. Seems pointless to me. Other news was that the Chinese have had the first case of re-infection, so the previous theory that some people don't develop antibodies and can catch it again has been proven.
  20. Just been on the news that a new infection centre has been found. Nothing new about that as they are still finding about 40 a day, but this one was a Naturist Club on the Med coast. Apparently 800 people have been tested and 30% are positive, so no evidence of distancing guidelines being met and it points heavily to the contrary! A statement yesterday said that the virus was NOT becoming more easily transmittable or less potent. The reason the positive tests are now at the highest daily level since April is simply because the under 40's are not taking social distancing seriously and their rate of infection is now 4x the rate of the over 65's. Whilst more testing can explain some of the increase, positive results now account for 3% of those tested, whereas a month ago it was only 1%. There won't be another general lockdown here, just local ones in hotspots. People are complaining about masks; it's not wearing them but the cost. Spotted 3 people on the TV this morning with masks under their noses and one with a visor and no mask, so some people 'don't get it' here either.
  21. We use Bibb electrical wire strippers. They cut from four sides so don't split the nail. Finish off by removing any sharp edges with a nail file. Take it slow (not too much at a time) and you won't need the pencil.
  22. Well good news for Portugal Daphne, but France is in a real mess now. The 4 regional 'hot' spots are around 80/ 100,000, there were 37 new virus centres identified yesterday of which 25% are Companies (up from 21 yesterday) and now 4800 new cases in a day also (up from 3700 and the highest since April). According to an article on the news this morning they have evidence that the virus has mutated slightly and now transmits much more easily but is slightly less potent. So the number in hospital remains constant, even with a massive rise of infections. Seems the masks aren't working? Lots of talk about a second lockdown as well, because a second wave has started. Some good news though: our Cou-Nu must be older than first thought (bought at probably 16 weeks not 12) and one has made the first attempts at laying (eggs dropped off the perch). Unfortunately they have the smallest yolks I've ever seen!
  23. I think it might be coccidiosis; the most risky age is under 6 weeks and that hunched stance is typical (we've had a chick with it). Damp is an important factor as that increases the risk considerably. Unfortunately it may be too late, but a vet will tell you? Has their chick crumb got ACS in it? Our chick survived after the vet wrote her off. I tried something totally daft and syringed her crop full of probiotic yoghurt. Why that worked I don't know and no-one has been able to tell me? I'm not suggesting that as a first stage though; get to a vet.
  24. And their surprisingly loud croaking does start when it's about to rain Ursula. We have little green frogs in the climbing roses and the Plane grafted to Mulberry tree, but they don't have red eyes, so perhaps a different species?

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