This is my blog about the day to day lives of my little flock of pet chickens. They're a happy little flock, although they're totally crackers! If you want a laugh, they'll gladly give you one.


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Thursday, 26 April 2012

A very soggy drought

"More than half of Britain is now in drought, the Environment Agency has warned, as the UK faces its most severe water shortage since 1976" (quote from a national newspaper a few days ago).

Drought!  Really?  For those of you who don't live in the UK, we've experienced an awful lot of rain lately.   In my little corner of England, it hasn't stopped raining for nearly 3 weeks!

And my chickens are not happy!  When they hear me coming down the path, they rush to the gate hoping that:

a.   They are going to be let out into the garden.
b.   That it's not pouring with rain on my side of the gate.

Instead of which, all that happens is they get wet and troop dejectedly back to the covered cage area.   They still don't bother going into the smoking shelter unless I throw corn in there.   Then they gobble up the goodies and retire back to the cage!

I've let them out into the garden when it's stopped raining long enough for me to do so, but that hasn't happened very often of late.   Even Mad Irene is getting fed up with it now, and she doesn't get fed up easily.   And her pupil Rebecca can no longer truly be described as "Lavender".  She has managed to acquire a black head - probably from delving into the mud looking for drowned worms.

Deluge or no deluge, there comes a time when you have no option but to clean out the coop and put fresh new bedding in.   That point came yesterday afternoon.   I had waited, watching the sky hopefully for a let-up in the downpour, but none came.    So we sloshed our way down to the hen run and did the quickest cleaning job imaginable.  Today we shall turn our attention to the run - again.  We had put down several rolls of turf; we knew they wouldn't last long, and they haven't, but they did cover the mud for a while.  Now they are, of course, areas of mud themselves.   When No. 1 Son gets home from work this afternoon, we shall be off to buy loads of straw.   We shall cover the caged area with it and strew the rest of it round the run with gay abandon.

Most of the flock opted for an early night yesterday.   However, Rebecca (it would be, wouldn't it), lingered downstairs in the cage - she likes her little bit of "me" time in the evening.   However, her foster-mum Tu-Tu was having none of it.   She grabbed Rebecca by the feathers and hauled her towards the ramp, making it quite clear that bedtime is bedtime and there shall be no messing about! 

She's never done that before, so we assume it was because she wanted the drafty pop-hole closed up.  Then she could settle down in the warmth created by a flock in an enclosed coop, dry out and dream of dustbaths in the sun.


wigglywoo said...

The sun has decided to shine my girls are being quite vocal, so of to squelch round in the run to give their coop a clean!

Anonymous said...

Mine are all fed up of the rain too, they want out of the walk-in run! Just been reading through your blog, such a lovely flock.

Shell said...

Wish I could send some of our sunshine to y'all. It's no fun at all tending to animals in all that mud.

Gill Edwards said...

Mine are just the same, the only brief break in the rain we had yesterday and i chose that moent to go out, when i locked them back in there were shouts of "cruelty to chickens" from all quarters.