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Chickens have arrived! See photos!

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OK, we have chickens at last!


We've been looking forward to today all week, so it was a bit of a downer that the weather was so miserable compared to the last couple of days. DH gave the breeder we intended to visit a call to check what stock they had and I'm glad he did as it turns out they didn't have any of the breeds we were interested in - I really wanted an Amber Star and a French Grey.


So we had to rethink our plans and decided to try another breeder, the Hen House at Thorndon, a bit closer to home. They told us they had lots of chooks available (including the Orpingtons DH had his heart set on) so off we went.


We spent 45 minutes at the breeder, traipsing through mud while looking at their large selection of soggy hens (and cockerels, geese and parrots, oh my!). As DH went back to the car for some boxes and cat carriers, I took an interest in a couple of hens in a rather packed hen-house which the breeder promptly dispersed as he nabbed them for me. I'd forgotten to mention that I'd never handled a chicken before, so felt a little bit flustered as he thrust one into my arms while he took the other. I carried the poor little thing so gingerly as we headed back to the car, I was terrified I might crush her. :D


Eventually, we ended up with six lovely hens in a mish-mash of cardboard boxes and cat carriers. Oh, and a dog crate! Here they are neatly placed in the back of our car:




On arriving home, I had to feed the baby and pop him down for a nap, all the while itching to get on releasing the chickens. :D


I was still a bit nervous of handling them (though it helped that my first experience didn't involve any pecking) so DH helped them out of their carriers and into the run!




And here are our lovely new hens! First to try out her new home is Suzie the Light Sussex. She stood out for me at the breeder as she looked particularly perky and was giving one of the other hens a dressing down! :lol:




Second up was Misty the Bluebelle. As I couldn't have the French Grey I wanted, she is a lovely alternative. The bluebelles at the breeder had quite a variety of markings, I chose her because she is a beautiful soft shade of blue.




Next up was Helga the Bielefelder, a rather uncommon breed it seems. I didn't get a good look at her at the breeder until he brought her over for a closer inspection, but then I realised she was such a cute little thing. She seems to be the most nervous out of the girls, hopefully she'll come to trust us soon enough.




Then we have Diva the Dark Brahma, the hen who was unceremoniously handed to me before I had a chance to protest lol. I love her distinctive markings and she seems such a gentle bird, I think she'll be one of my favourites.




Finally DH has his two precious Orpingtons: Mrs Featherbottom (Buff) and Hennifer (Blue).


Here's Mrs Featherbottom:




.... and Hennifer. I was quite surprised to find that Hennifer and Misty both look very similar despite being completely different breeds.




In the first few minutes, Suzie had a couple of face-offs with the other hens. Although she seemed quite dominant at the breeder, I don't think she's going to be high-up in the pecking order here, bless her. All the hens started pecking at the ground within a few minutes of entering their new home, so they don't seem particularly stressed. DH did have to show them the Cube itself though as after a couple of hours no one had ventured inside.


At about 5:30 we returned those who had come back out into the henhouse for the night. It was so cute hearing them clucking away inside!


I hope tomorrow is a nicer day so that we can spend some more time getting to know them. It wasn't much fun going up and down the muddy garden in the pouring rain and cold wind, but I enjoyed seeing them settle in.


One last photo of them all in the run shortly after arriving home:



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First time I've seen cube with run in signature 8)


(Do you have a computer whizz on board :think: ? I can't see the run smilie anywhere :lol: .)


DH is an illustrator and loves making custom graphics so he kindly knocked these up for me. :D He also customised some of the hen smilies too.


fantastic! although you copied my first picture of hving a bluebelle and light sussex in a box together! -_-. Our bluebelle also has some red markkings on her chest like yours, but not so many!


I shall have to go and have a peek at your photos! :D The red markings are very pretty aren't they? They really show up nicely in the daylight.


Today is thankfully lovely and sunny. DH went out to open the Cube and check on the girls this morning as I had a teething baby snuggled up in bed with me. :lol:




Imagine my surprise when he came back and waved an egg in my face! Can't believe it, I knew some of the girls were a little older than 18 weeks, but didn't expect them to be laying yet! No idea who the culprit is, I'm going to post a seperate thread with a photo in a minute. !eggcream!


In the meantime, here's a couple of the girls enjoying some morning sunshine:





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they are lovely girls. wish i could afford a cube but having second baby aug so not much chance unless win lotto!! i have three lovely ladies my son of 3 loves them. well done on your 1st egg im still waiting.its best if you handle them at dusk they are sleepy and you can get confident with them. mine are so tame got them 12 feb.can pick them up and they love eating corn out of your hands.my amber star loves my son goes into shed with him !bluebelle always first out in morning think she maybe in charge. gold ranger abit skitty flaps alot she the youngest.

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