Tuesday, 31 January 2012


The New Year is bringing increased activity among our young cockerels. They are starting to fight with the older ones, guess Spring is on it's way. Zinny and Del Boy had a pecking match through the chicken wire which Phil didn't see until he went to put the chickens to bed and found blood on Zinny's comb. We had to bring them indoors and clean them up with Tea Tree and salt water, separately of course. Zinny hated it, but Del has been through it before when he had a fight with Windsor, and bore it stoically. They are both OK today.

Yesterday when I went to say Good Morning to the chickens I noticed Countess the black Cochin was huddled up by the door of their run so I asked Phil to get her out to check up on her as Windsor won't let me into the run. She is painfully thin, I think because Windsor and Duchess tend to drive her away from food. Whenever they are let out she comes running to the greenhouse door and wolfs down any food I give her. I think it has been going on for a while, so we decided to keep her indoors for a week and feed her up. She has been eating steadily, corn, layers' pellets, soaked wholemeal bread, sweetcorn, cat food, greens, soaked oat cakes and maggots. Her crop has been stuffed at bedtime so hopefully she will regain the weight she has lost quite quickly.

I don't think she will be going back with the Cochins as they don't seem to want her in with them. We have to split up the young cockerels soon before they damage each other so it may be a blessing in disguise. We have a spare hutch we bought at the auction which was intended for the Cochins, but will do for Countess and one of the Araucana cockerels. It just needs the front to be altered so there is a side opening door rather than the pull up door it has at the moment. Stan or Ollie can go in with Countess, she is used to a much heavier cockerel so it will be better for her. That leaves the other cockerel on his own so one of the Araucana girls will go in with him. The baby run will be split into 2 again as it was with the Mums and babies with a dividing fence down the middle, Zinny and Charlotte can go one side and Trigger and his hen on the other.

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