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About PixieDust

  • Birthday 06/26/1970

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All Knowing Superchicken

All Knowing Superchicken (4/19)



  1. Reading so much online and on FB about people thinking it's all rubbish and it doesn't apply to back garden hens. Whilst there is currently no reported issues of avian flu here, following the rules may just save the life of your hens. It may come to nothing and let's hope that's the case but I just want to share some of the things I am reading online and you can judge for yourselves. "It's doesn't affect garden chickens, only commercial flocks." Not true. "My garden is tiny it won't affect me as my girls are not actually moving anywhere." Not true. "I can shoo the wild birds away and it won't affect me." Not true. "This is unfair. It's just trying to make us spend money on runs we don't have." Not true. "Free range eggs in supermarkets are not free range now." Not true. Also, so many whinging about not having a run. When I was researching my chicken coop and chicken keeping, well over a year before I got them, I was advised to think about a covered WIR. Some people remember the kerfuffle and arguments I had with my OH over a solid roof on the run. I know life isn't always this simple but please research before getting chickens. We have previous history of avian flu outbreaks in the UK with culls and lock downs. If you don't have somewhere covered, please now create somewhere. Someone I saw this morning posted on a page that we are all going a bit far and there is more chance of dead birds through them being cooped up. I am no expert and am not trying to preach, but please be sensible. We are all responsible and it only takes one or two mistakes and this could be serious. It applies to us all, even those people with gardens that are small!
  2. I have just ordered some. Got the tablets for dissolving spraying.
  3. As many people have said all over the Internet, it is better to be safe than have to cull your flock however small. Our garden is full of wild birds and the large house across the road has geese and ducks. I believe ducks are more at risk, but I am erring on the side of caution. I had one of the new ladies lay a lash egg a few days ago and she has been down the last couple of days. No sneezing or anything but hoping I won't have to do a vet run as technically moving her isn't the legal thing to do at the moment.
  4. You won't believe how thankful I won the battle of the WIR with my OH. I told him I needed a roof!
  5. All poultry to be housed for 30 days. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-measures-to-protect-poultry-against-avian-flu
  6. Yes that's right sjp. Tonight they were in the run but again not clued up. I went out to lock them up and found them in the corner. I decided to pick Trixie up and put her on the ramp, which she slowly climbed and went into. Kerry managed to get in by herself. She is the one showing more interest in wanting to join the others. However, Kerry laid on the floor of the coop under the others bums, to sleep. I promptly popped her on the perch. Then Trixie went to go to sleep in the nest box and she was turfed out. I know they used to sleep in a plastic dog kennel in a small secure run. This was up on a stand, so they look to go up to roost and not into the coop. Anyway, after Pixie fell off her perch and made a big fuss about getting on again, they all just snuggled down and not a peep. Earlier today I took a cauliflower in and popped it in the hay bale string bag that horses use. My girls had a good play with that. At bedtime, Kerry was investigating it but Trixie didn't. I also gave them some kale from the veg garden. My girls love it, the newbies took ages to even attempt to eat it. But they did. What upsets me more is they look so scared. They watch the other 3 eating and playing and it seems Kerry desperately wants to join in. But she did front up to Pixie yesterday and seems not to be the one they want to tell off. Trixie just screams if they come near her at the moment. My lovely Winnie had a pop so I grabbed her up, mid peck and told her off. That took some wind out of her sails. Some may remember when my friend and I went to get Trixie. She is the one that I complained had had her beak trimmed, (they all had at this place), and they assured my friend it would grow back and it didn't. She also has one toe that looks broken and twisted back. She is not limping or favouring it so I hope it's an old injury. I don't want to ask my friend as it would floor her if she had been hurt. The toe is not swollen or red or anything. Well day 2 ends and hopefully we will continue to move forward, however slowly.
  7. Well I let them out with the others late yesterday. Bit of a mistake. I couldn't get them back in as they didn't seem to know where to go. Waited til dark and they tried roosting on the garden table, so I grabbed them and got them in the run. However, the pop hole is still a mystery to them so they got shoved through that. When I opened them up this morning Trixie was on the perch with my 3 and Kerry was in the nesting box. They didn't want to wake up so I left them. This was about 7.30am. Around 9.30am they must have emerged as there was squabbling. My friend often didn't get down the garden to feed them til 9 or 10 or later sometimes. So early mornings must be a bit of a shock! I think I am going to only let out my girls til they get the idea of going in the coop to sleep, a bit like you do with POL's when they first come home. They don't have a clue about using a pop hole and are going to have to be re taught I think. Nothing further today. We shall see what the rest of the day brings. I can't remember how to load up pics. I will take a look later.
  8. Although I have no worries about rehoming my new 2, OH said "we potentially have 5 hens who don't lay". Roll on moving house and a bigger run! Can wait to see your piccies.
  9. I thought I would write this experience which might help others. To be clear for future readers; I have 3 hybrids, (The Pobs), in a 10.5ft X 7ft run. They are almost 2 and a 1/2 years old. The Littleacre coop holds 5 large fowl. My friend needed to rehome her 2 hybrids; one 3yrs old and one 1.5yrs old. I wish my run were bigger but it's currently not. They will get supervised free range every day except if I have an appointment or the weather is very inclement. I picked them up last night and they were put in the coop after dark. They are not used to a coop and I had to guide them out of the pop hole. My girls were on the ready immediately. Pixie set two with Kerry, both Bluebells. Pix won the bout and Kerry looked shocked. She gave as good as she got though. Lily, who currently has and will probably constantly require a bumpa bit, and placid Winnie set on the even more placid Trixie. She will be a cuddler. She hid under the next box. OH is bringing home a board if he can find one to use as a hiding place. I threw down some mealworm to try to quell the fighting. It did. Kerry joined the rest in hoovering them up. Trixie was still under the nest box. The bad weather should ease off in a while and I will let them out whilst I clean and see how that works. I just want to sit in with them and stop any fighting. I know I have to let them sort the pecking order though. Will finish my breakfast and go and see what is happening and try to get some pics.
  10. It's just dawned on me that Trixie is a Speckledy.
  11. Yes just got home with them and put them in the coop. They both seem very heavy and the cuckoo is huge. My friend kept them in a makeshift run down the side of the garage. They were in with 2 bunnies, 3 guinea pigs a tortoise and 2 quail which were in cages. She says Kerry, the bluebell is about 3 and doesn't lay often. She also says Trixie the cuckoo doesn't lay much and she got her as POL just over a year ago. She believes the girls tuck into rabbit/guinea pig nosh and this may be the reason they don't lay. But they are heavy. I will photograph them tomorrow. I just want to go out and watch them and check they are ok.
  12. My OH gets it and he says it's course sharp sand or around here it can be called Thames washed sand. Some garden centres sell it but you can get it from a builders merchants. It gets heavy and claggy when wet; the run is covered but it blows in the sides. However, in its favour, the sand, even when wet, stops the girls getting anything caked on their feet and it's a huge dust bath. I hope that helps.
  13. I only use Aubiose in the coop. I generally clean it every day, at the very least poo pick it. I have used sand successfully on the run floor for 2 years now. I poo pick nearly every day. I refresh the sand once a year. I personally wouldn't use Aubiose on the run floor as I would need so many bales it wouldn't be cost effective. We used 30 bags sharp sand initially and topped up with about 20 last time.
  14. I am not but your help is required. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3953206/Going-cheap-12-000-chickens-death-row-Free-range-hens-destined-slaughter-offered-sale-1.html

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