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Frog39

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  1. The reason I am thinking about rehoming them is because of my partner - he is very unhappy that we have rats. I love the hens and really enjoy having them but not if it is causing trouble in the house. As I said I did my research as much as possible about hen keeping - reading books, online and speaking to people who have hens. I honestly thought - as I said - with good house keeping the rats would not be an issue. Pleny of people I have had conversations with regarding hens in their gardens do not have a rat problem. The reason I will be keeping them in the run from now on is on the advice of the Rat Man - he said having them free ranging will attract the rats even more. I will ask him tomorrow why this would be the case but unfortunately at the moment they will not be getting out. For the last 5 years we have kept 2 rabbits outside in a large run. We have never had any signs of rats in that time. I wish things were different, thats why I am here asking for advice. I do not want to rehome my girls but cannot have rats digging holes under my house and the problems that may bring.
  2. We got our 3 girls in June and my daughter and I love them and are really enjoying looking after them. Before we got the girls I did a huge amount of research - I was pretty confident when we brought them home that it would all be good. My partner really was against the idea and has taken no interest in them at all. He doesn't like them and I don't think he ever will! The girls get out everyday to roam around the garden - not a huge garden but big enough. Unfortunately 2 weeks ago we noticed holes had appeared under our house - RATS! We back on to a field and the hens must've attracted them as it's never ever been a problem in the 8 years we have lived here. We practice very good housekeeping, all food is in plastic containers, the girls coop/run is on concrete with hard wood chips and the run and coop are kept clean. My partner was not happy at all - and we had a few 'I told you so' conversations! He contacted a pest controller who has come out every day - laying traps, bait and sticky pads in various parts of the garden. So far 7 have been caught! My partner has been the one who has had to patrol the garden every morning to see if anything has been caught. Unfortunately on 2 occassions he has had to kill some trapped on the sticky glue pads. This has upset him immensely! The Rat Man has said we will get rid of them but has said it's pretty likely we will have the problem again next year. Our girls are now being kept in their coop/run and are no longer allowed to free range I just don't know what to do - keep the girls stuck in their run all day every day or try to rehome them? Has anyone had experience of rats? Having to rehome their hens? Any advice is appreciated. If I am honest the rat situation has freaked me out a bit and I do feel very sorry that my partner who never wanted them in the first place is the one who is having to deal with the problem. I know I should be dealing with it but I just can't! also I have no idea how much we will be charged for the daily Rat Man visits - yet another reason for my partner to be annoyed The Rat Man is certain the hens are the problem and his face on the first visit was very much 'well what did you expect?!' I am near Edinburgh in Scotland if rehoming is the route we have to take.
  3. Thanks for the replies, think I'll give the tyre a try see how it works out.
  4. Hello I've got 2 dust baths in the run, one is a washing up basin the other a litter tray. They prefer the basin for some reason. Nearly everyday I'm having to renew the ingredients in the basin - earth, sand, and diatom powder because they are throwing it about everywhere and it goes all over the run. Any advice on what container to use to make it last longer? Thanks
  5. Thanks for the info! So relieved that they seem to be back to normal
  6. Thanks everyone. This morning has brought a massive improvement - all have had something to eat and drink. Still a little under the weather but tails are up and they not all huddled together in a corner. Will keep a very close eye on them. I completely understand the advice about returning them but tbh we have grown attached to them already. We are not planning on introducing any others - the 3 are pets only with no plans of them being anything else. The eggs will be an added bonus! Thanks again for the replies, I'll keep you posted.
  7. Thanks for the reply. No, these are my only hens. If they are stressed should they settle over night?
  8. Just got our 3 girls last week, p.o.l. Everything has been going well but the columbine has got a cough and a bubbly nose. They have all been eating well and beginning to settle down really well. Today I noticed another hen, black tail, has a runny nose. I phoned the guy we purchased them from - has a good reputation - and he said to bring them straight over for an injection. He said they had mycroplasma! He gave each a Tylan injection. When we got the girls home they have gone downhill. Standing with eyes closed, not eating or drinking, tail drooped down. They look very unhappy and I am wondering if they will make it throughout the night. Anyone give me any advice as to what on earth has happened to them? Thanks in advance
  9. Thanks! Good to know that it does work. Thanks for replying
  10. Hello everyone, Band new to this chicken keeping business - got our coop /run from chickencoopsdirect - looks great, ordered hardwood wood chips for the run floor and this weekend planning to get all the other bits and pieces. All being well we'll get our hens next week. Anyway, I'd love to get 3 hens and a bantam or 2 but not sure if this combination would be a good one. Would the bantams get picked on by the hens? I wondered if, with them all being at pol, purchased at the same time and all moving in to their brand new coop/run together they would settle and be happy together. Can anyone advise me if they have done this or have any info on it? The hens will be in the run all day with a chance most evenings to potter about in the garden. The coop/run is 41 sq feet so not huge if the bantams need to get away from the bigger girls. If it's best not to mix them then I'll just stick to 3 or 4 hens. Can't wait! Thanks

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