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    • CommentTimeMay 26th, 2016 1:56pm (May 26th 2016) edited

    Keeper of the hens

    Well we thought we had enough nest boxes for the girls - we had two broody hens (Maude and Mabel) but as they are only lickle banties it still left lots of room for the others to lay.

    That was, until Velma our huge Brahma went broody a couple of days ago!  She fluffs herself out and is enormous - you could fit dozens of eggs under her!  Unfortunately none of them will hatch though :(

    So I've been tipping her off the nest when I can - she's heavy (really heavy!) but is so gentle she just clucks disapprovingly and hasn't pecked me once - even the shy Pekins will peck any hen or hand that comes near when they are sitting on the nest - I watched Maude furiously pecking Renee's neck the other day as she tried to lay!

    So desperate measures etc - I bought an 'under bed storage box' which is a wide large box, just slightly smaller than the width of the coop, and filled that with straw and put that in front of the nest boxes to provide an additional laying area.

    Renee was the first to investigate this strange new addition - she scratted the straw for a bit, then decided it was either a bit boring or she could wait to lay and went back outside.

    Hopefully there will be a couple of eggs in it when I check later today.
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeMay 26th, 2016 5:13pm (May 26th 2016)
    Mass brood-in! Bless them. The extension was a brainwave, Neil!
    • CommentAuthornanny north
    • CommentTimeMay 27th, 2016 1:03pm (May 27th 2016)
    Brilliant idea Neil I am sure it will do the job just nicely. Ha ha Mass brood-in that did make me chuckle.
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeMay 27th, 2016 6:48pm (May 27th 2016)
    Locky was broody so I ordered rubber banty eggs from eBay. I put 2 in yesterday...and the squirrels have nicked them, I reckon. I'd love to see their faces when they realise. Put the other 2 in this morning and shall see if they too have gone awol!
    • CommentTimeMay 27th, 2016 7:45pm (May 27th 2016)
    Ha ha!!!!! Those squirrels are going to be so confused!!
    • CommentAuthornanny north
    • CommentTimeMay 28th, 2016 12:37pm (May 28th 2016)
    Ha ha thats funny do they often take the eggs CC ? You will have to start looking under trees to see if they have chucked them down in disgust.
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeMay 28th, 2016 6:02pm (May 28th 2016)
    I just hope they don't drop them on someone's head - they're small but blooming hard!
    • CommentTimeJun 2nd, 2016 9:50am (Jun 2nd 2016)

    Keeper of the hens

    Those squirrels aren't going to be happy!

    Velma is *still* broody - I thought she'd have given up by now - I worry that she isn't eating enough for her erm... over-large size.

    Will have to think about penning them separately if they don't give up soon.
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJun 2nd, 2016 6:01pm (Jun 2nd 2016)
    Locky still well dug in. Threw her out for some air today , but she had a drink, quick dust bath and shot back in. She had stolen 2 of Nugget's eggs as well and as we didn't know how long she had been sitting on them i put them out for the squirrels (to make up for the rubber one!)
    Can you not park a bit of food by Velma, Neil? I have been giving Locky a bit of food and water on the nest.
    • CommentTimeJun 3rd, 2016 5:08pm (Jun 3rd 2016) edited

    Keeper of the hens

    There was a huge commotion in the coop the other day as five hens tried to get in the door and nest boxes at the same time :rolling:

    I got some photos of everybody shoving everybody else about, and Ariel and Maude even thought about using my dad's emergency nest box...but then didn't :P

     photo nestboxissues_zpskmkq9dzm.jpg

     photo 6214a56e-acdf-49c6-8091-c4091ea51ea6_zpsqx6gdnak.jpg

     photo nestboxissues2_zps7cnuo4ph.jpg
     photo nestboxissues1_zpso0oj12s0.jpg