The chickens arrived this week: three larger chickens – one Rhode Island Cock and a hen, and one Moran – and 2 small bantams, variety unknown as yet. We put them in the run constructed as a temporary enclosure for them behind the house. The two small one, Rosa and Lily seemed lost and bothered by the larger three. Not surprising really when you consider that they had always been with their mother, always inside and never seen other hens; so the journey, being outside and faced with three giants and no mother must have been quite traumatic. After watching them for a day we decided we should get two more small ones – their sisters – to keep them company and give then strength in numbers.
The next morning we set of to Monsieur Pizzo’s little farm. This is a delightful place with chickens, geese, pheasants, quail, turkey and ducks in addition to goats, Camaroon sheep and an orphan lamb he is bottle feeding. M. Pizzo is completely passionate about animals and especially hens, he is quite a character. He looked worried when we arrived but we soon reassured him that all was well and our hens were settling in. We explain that we would like two more and he said ‘yes, the Amsrock, I will bring them later when they are ready – too small today’ we explained we didn’t mean them which we understood will arrive in 3 or 4 weeks, but we needed two more of the little bantams. ‘Eh, bien; deux petite en plus’. After some shenanigans catching them they were put in the cat basket we had brought with us for the purpose. Then he said he would show us the Amsrocks that we would have later. They were delightful running around like excited children. Suddenly we reached in and caught a little ginger bundle of feathers and handed it to Liz. So cute! A very small not very old bantam but wings quite well developed. ‘Voila, une petite cadeau’ he said. It wasn’t clear why he wanted to give us a present but she was so delightful we couldn’t refuse.
On arriving home we added the three new chickens into the run. The little grey and beige bantams immediately banded together making excited baby noises. The little ginger bundle, who we thought would want to be with them was solitary. Occasionally one of the others would pick on her which would have been worrying but she would run away, then turn around as if to say ‘What… I’m not scared by you’. She has turned out to a great character and very courageous. Gradually she has begun to spend more time with the other bantams but is also happy to be on her own. We decided that she is Katie (after ‘What Katie Did’ and Katherine Hepburn!). The two new bantams are Poppy and Daisy.
We were worried about the heat, the poor chickens were panting and couldn’t seem to find enough shade. So an umbrella was propped on the ground over the grain tray – this seemed to be just the right place for Katie. We also put up a parasol so there is a large rectangle of shade throughout the day. Then we have been spraying the grass in the run several times a day; this cools things a little and attracts insects and worms. Thank goodness for the well!
So we now have eight chickens with two more to come, more than the six we originally planned but fate seemed to take a hand and they are all happy now so it was obviously meant to be.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_separator color=”custom” accent_color=”#deead0″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]Perhaps you would like to know…
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