Monday 13 February 2012

The manure has arrived

JW with manure heap Feb 12

Not the best job to have to do but we have taken delivery of 5 tonnes of cow manure from a local farm. It was dumped as a heap in the car park of the allotment site and we have to shovel it into wheelbarrows and shift it about 50 metres to the allotment where we are in the process of spreading it onto the ground. It has to be done or otherwise we risk exhausting the land.

Our new hens

new hens Feb 12 6

We have two new hens to add to the five we already have. They have settled down into the group though they get bullied a bit by Snow White, our coral nick who has grown to be boss hen. We have had them for 10 days now and the bullying seems to have died down. It seems Snow White has made clear who is in charge, and whose at the bottom of the pecking order.

new hens Feb 12 4
This is Crusty, a Pied Suffolk and the youngest of the two new hens.

new hens Feb 12 2
This is Ginger, a Columbian Blacktail. Last year we got a Columbian Blacktail. Called Gingie, unfortunately, she died suddenly in December. Ginger is her replacement. Note that her comb is developing well, so I am expecting her to start laying within the next two or three weeks.

Wednesday 1 February 2012

Sunbathing foxes and productive hens

Fox on shed Jan 12

I still have a house and garden in London from my days when I used to work there. I was there over the weekend and spotted this fox sun bathing on the roof of our garden shed. I quickly got out my camera, put on an appropriate lens and captured this picture. We are used to having foxes there and we often see fox cubs in the garden during the late spring and summer. Had this photo been taken on my allotment back home in Sunniside, in the North East of England, I would have been a bit less relaxed. Foxes and hens don't go well together, in my opinion, though the fox may beg to differ. We know there are some foxes near our village but so far we have not experienced any problems since getting the hens.

Talking of which, our girls laid 102 eggs for us during January. Productive little ladies they are turning into. It meant I was met by a large quantity of eggs in our kitchen when I got back from London.