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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Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Sitting ducks they ain't!

In January last year I passed on an hilarious story about chickens that invaded someone's house.   This time it's ducks that have caused me so much amusement.   Their escapade appeared on the Down The Lane Facebook page and is reproduced with the kind permission of their owner.

The adventurers

"Tonight, I had to do several laps of the kitchen, into the hall, into the dining room, back to the hall, into the lounge, out of the lounge, into the dining room........and so on.....following my two ducks.  Not impressed.  I had to follow them very slowly so as not to scare them.  The second they get worried....yup, splat on the floor....thank heavens its wooden.  Cat was doing the rounds with the ducks.  She even lapped them.  They took no notice.

"I had been madly busy all day, in and out of the house 5 times.  When this happened I was only home for about half an hour.  I thought - go and check on/lock up chickens.  Darned ducks.  I came through the back door, following the ducks inside.  There were 2 eggs in each cardigan pocket, 3 eggs in my hands and I holding an empty feed bucket - chasing these ducks.  Hubby sat on sofa laughing, daughter sat with headphones on, staring at PC saying "what?" while I'm flapping around trying not to drop/crush eggs in pockets.  Stress or what!   As if that wasn't enough, went out for 2 hour lecture on web design, came home to cockerel crowing (11pm) and ducks on patio shouting for dinner.  Went to investigate cockerel noise and guess what happened......

"At least they only made it into the downstairs bathroom this time.  I will remember to shut the door when I go out next time....I think...."

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Temper, temper!

Punk being jolly cross

One of the reasons we could never fit an automatic pop hole closing thingy to our chicken coop is Pom-Pom.   Unless it's pouring with rain, she always roosts on the cage gate; sometimes she stays out even if it is raining.  This means one of us has to go down to the run every evening, check whether she's out or in and deposit her inside the coop with the others if necessary.  Only then can the pop hole be closed up.   That "someone" is generally No. 1 Son.

Yesterday evening he went down to lock up and Pom-Pom was comfortably hunkered down on the gate.   All the others were nicely settled inside the coop.  Maggie and Titian were snuggled up in the nest box, Tu-Tu was in solitary splendour on the back perch and everyone else had jammed themselves onto the front perch.

Then No. 1 Son opened the side door of the coop to pop Pom-Pom inside.   This annoyed Mad Irene so much that she got off the perch, leaving a convenient space for Pom-Pom.

So far, so good.  Unfortunately, that meant Pom-Pom was right next to Punk, who took strong exception to having to sit next to her ladyship.   So the Araucana decided to give Madame a good, hard peck.  Fortunately the hand is quicker than the beak and my son managed to move his between Punk's beak and Pom-Pom's head.  So she got him instead.   This made Punk even crosser and more determined to get at Pom-Pom.   So she drew herself up to her full height, stretched her neck to its greatest extent and tried to deliver her peck over the top of the offending hand.   Her effort was just that bit too much for her equilibrium;  she overbalanced and fell off the perch!

That was the last straw!  She stalked off to the other perch, delivering a totally ineffective peck to Pom-Pom's tail as she passed it.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Drama Queen's understudy

As you may remember from previous posts, our little flock's Drama Queen is Pom-Pom.   Her performance on the days she condescends to lay an egg deserves an Oscar, if not two.   Starting around 11 o'clock, when she's had time to come to a bit, she parades round and round the hen run.   This perambulation is accompanied by recitations from various Shakespeare plays, a wide selection of poetry, the famous aria from Madam Butterfly and her interpretation of Meg Ryan's 'When Harry Met Sally' performance.  You know that bit - after which an old biddy in the restaurant says, "I'll have what she's having"?  Honestly, Pom-Pom goes on and on for hours until she finally rids herself of her pesky egg at around 4 pm.

All our girls stop laying in October and refuse to start again until late February/early March time.  However, we saw the sun for a few moments last week.   That was enough to fool Mad Irene into thinking Spring had arrived, so she laid an egg.   

Not to be outdone, the next day Punk decided she'd lay one too.   When I went down to check up on everyone, she had made herself comfortable in the nestbox and had a far-away look on her face.   Unfortunately, things did not proceed as planned and when No. 1 Son went down to check them again, she was obviously not at all well.

She was tottering round the lower end of the run, wings drooping and looking very sorry for herself.   A quick look and we saw what looked like egg white dribbling down from her vent.  Her vent also didn't look right at all.   There was no egg to be found anywhere, so we were very worried that it had broken inside her.   Although it was Sunday, we knew our lovely rural vets run an emergency service.  OK, it would be expensive, but what choice did we have?  So we phoned, explained the situation and got an appointment to see her in a couple of hours.   Back we went to the chicken run to see how poor little Punk was doing.   

How was she doing?   I'll tell you how that scrawny-necked cockroach was doing.   She was absolutely fine!   She had deposited an egg in a convenient piece of mud by the cage gate and was busy tucking into some corn with the others.

We picked her up, checked her nether regions and everything was perfectly normal.   She started swearing at us (she can be a foul-mouthed fowl when she wants), so we let her return to yumming the corn.   Then we trudged back to the house to cancel the appointment with the vet.

Pom-Pom, watch out;  I suspect you have competition for that Oscar!