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    • CommentAuthorJoe
    • CommentTimeJul 29th, 2008 1:31pm (Jul 29th 2008)
     
    what about when he needs the toilet?
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeJul 29th, 2008 5:02pm (Jul 29th 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Yes, can't have Gravy leaving little trails of runny poo up the aisle, can we? Good point well made, Joe :D
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 29th, 2008 5:35pm (Jul 29th 2008)
     
    Give that man a pat on the head; quite right, Joe, Diane's FIRST THOUGHT should have been about RP and its consequences on long haul international air travel. Tut tut!
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 29th, 2008 6:18pm (Jul 29th 2008)
     
    No no, I'm weaving some diapers out of recycled plastics for him as we speak. I do love Joe's genteel manner of expressing the ... issue. :D
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 29th, 2008 8:25pm (Jul 29th 2008)
     
    I'm still not 100% sure about Gravy, though...I mean, Livia copies Onion's crow in a sort of faint echo, and Gravy might be copying that...In the immortal words of Vicki, I is confuzzled...
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeJul 29th, 2008 11:09pm (Jul 29th 2008)
     
    Talking of sending birds elsewhere (loosely talking anyway!) I read in the newspaper that a man was arrested this weed for attempting to send a pigeon by post. Basically he was seen shoving it through the opening in the postbox, and then it took 4 hours to get someone out there with the keys to let it out. The postman's wife was looking after it but they weren't sure it would survive. Don't know if the man will be prosecuted. He should be.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 3:50am (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    What a horrible thing! That was one of Lady Langley's relatives!! :cry:

    But, yahoooo! Maybe Gravy will get to stay!! (Hey some of the vanillacons are missing - I wanted to put a heart here...)
    •  
      CommentAuthornancy
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 1:02pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    :heartbounce::heart: under "love" diane
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 4:48pm (Jul 30th 2008) edited
     
    Thanks Nancy. For some reason, in that particular post box - only the *standard* vanillacons would open for me. Lets see what I've got now...

    :heart:

    Yahooooo!

    :boogie:
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 5:52pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    I think that bloke should be stuffed in a postbox and left there for a day. In this heat. He'd never do it again...
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 5:54pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    By the way, Red, I remember you saying once that a chick can change sex; under what circumstances, do you know?
    • CommentAuthorollie in UK
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 7:42pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    Back from Portugal via "Jet.2" I think Millie has had a trail run in that plane, it ain't as clean as I would like for the money paid for the honour of have me on board.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 7:45pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    CC, I've heard of a hen 'changing' into a rooster. This usually happens after the only rooster in a flock dies. The hen (usually the one at the top of the pecking order) will stop laying eggs, learn to crow, and i've heard may even grow spurs! Is that what you meant?

    Also, if Gravy's comb is red this is an almost certain indicator that he is a boy. Pullets don't develop red colouring in their combs until they are about 15 weeks old, whereas boys can develop it as early as 3 / 4 weeks old. A large comb is also usually a sign of a roo, although the colouring is more reliable.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 7:45pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Hiya Ollie! Have you come back to nice weather?
    • CommentAuthorollie in UK
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 7:52pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    Hello Red, my weather is much the same as yours to say I am only a very few miles away. Today IS nice though, it isn't as hot as Portugal but it's OK, especially as it is HOME....
    Thinking of dropping by Hencam one day in the school hols and bringng some grapes for the girls.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 7:56pm (Jul 30th 2008) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    You should, they'd appreciate that. Grapes are a favourite treat of theirs, followed by couscous and pears...although they like cakes and buns too but they're on a sort-of diet until Tilly loses a bit of weight! :P

    I'm pleased the weather brightened up today, i thought we were in for another thunderstorm but it looks like the sun is back for a few more days (hopefully!)
    I love the feeling of coming back home after a holiday, and the feeling of sleeping in your own bed...
    •  
      CommentAuthornancy
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 8:02pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    Red do you mean that a chicken's gender is really "mind over matter?"
    • CommentAuthorollie in UK
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 8:08pm (Jul 30th 2008) edited
     
    "It's nice to go traveling,
    It's very nice to roam
    But it's so much nicer,
    Yes,
    It's so much nicer, to get home"
    :bigsmile:
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 8:12pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    Welcome home, Ollie; did you have a nice rest?
    Yes, Red, Gravy's comb is red...:( Ah well...he'll have a lovely time with lots of ladies to run after. He likes climbing, he's been sitting in a bush and on a bench today!
    • CommentAuthorollie in UK
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 8:27pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    I took my daughter, her hubby and their daughter along with a pal. It worked beautifuly!
    Georgie had a pal instead of gran having to amuse her. I got my meals cooked for me, that was a huge treat.
    Villa was expensive but I say I can't take it with me so we get an annual holiday in style.
    This villa had it all - pool with electric cover, lots of garden with a trampoline etc., sleeps six in any configuration you want. All mod cons +++.

    We are considering rebooking for next year, difficult to better.
    We found a wonderful beach on the last day but I fell asleep on the sand and now have a little scorching on my ankles.
    :sad:
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 8:39pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    Ow...slap on the aftersun! Glad you had a lovely time; do you feel rested? Ready for some hard hencammimg?
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeJul 30th, 2008 9:48pm (Jul 30th 2008)
     
    Welcome back Ollie, glad you had a good time. Forecast is for rain tomorrow here - we had a few showers last night. That'll make you appreciate your holiday even more!
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 1:55am (Jul 31st 2008) edited
     
    Welcome back Ollie.

    By the way, Red, I remember you saying once that a chick can change sex; under what circumstances, do you know? ~CC
    Just what were you planning, CC...?

    Everyone knows that ALL boys start out as girls, right? (I just think that is an interesting factoid.)
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 4:42pm (Jul 31st 2008) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    :rolling:
    Diane, when you quote it like that I can imagine CC there with a test tube and the crazy scientist hairstyle & goggles, trying to change Gravy into a girl...
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 5:28pm (Jul 31st 2008)
     
    My sentiments exactly. ;)
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 6:00pm (Jul 31st 2008)
     
    I would if I could...but I can't...:(
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 6:03pm (Jul 31st 2008)
     
    I am VERY late for my back (and there for, potentially the ferry) so I've gotta go CC. :cry: I wanted to ask how the reading was and whether LSE survived.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 6:05pm (Jul 31st 2008)
     
    I'm taking *Onions* on the ferry with me - thought I'd finished reading it where I began it. :D

    Tara
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeJul 31st, 2008 6:06pm (Jul 31st 2008)
     
    Byeeee!
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd, 2008 10:18pm (Aug 2nd 2008)
     
    Next dilemma; if Gravy's a he, does he go to Wendy's uncle where there's a lot of space but not secure from foxes OR to my mate Jo who keeps her girls in arks (small enclosures)? And Jo's girls are BIIIIIG girls...would Gravy cope, or woyuld he get squished like a grape?:shocked:
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd, 2008 11:46pm (Aug 2nd 2008)
     
    You'd have to change his name to Juice then...

    Hmmm. Does he like being out in the yard, or is he happy staying in a small contained area? What's in his little heart?
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 11:09am (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    Well, he's used to rattling around a 26 foot square walled garden. And chasing pigeons, robins, blackbirds, dunnocks and starlings.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 12:14pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Do they ever get let out of the ark to free-range?
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 1:18pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    I'm not sure...I hope so...I think he's going to Wendy if he's a he. I know I anthropomorphise them, but I think he'd hate to be shut in.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:18pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    Sounds like it. I know I've had animals whose spirits just meant a contained existence would be torture and so I had to let them roam free - against my own nature to try and control the environment and keep them safe... They all DID remain safe somehow.

    OMG - one of my yard birds hit the window beside me as I was writing this. S/he's okay. Sitting in the vine staring at us...
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:20pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    Staring at all twelve of you...! :)
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:28pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    Wot?

    Oh, do you mean from the bump on the head? :rolling: Prolly.

    Ah, s/he's flown off now. It was a young (1st year) Black-headed Grosbeak. Pretty.

    Argggh. There's a rat in the bird feeder - at noon! Why is it that I feel differently about that then about squirrels or chipmunks???
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:31pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    I think it's a primeval response...I like pet rats, but seeing a wild one in the garden makes me worry about disease/attack for the chickens, rabbits and cats. And Eric. :)
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:32pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    I agree. I don't know if they ARE worse (re: disease) than squirrels. Or birds, for that matter. And its funny - I love Mel.
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:33pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    Mel's eyes are so HUUUUGE!
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:46pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    Surpassed only by her Mickey Mouse ears. I think she is actually a chinchilla...
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 8:48pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    That's true...a chinchilla on anti-steroids!
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeAug 3rd, 2008 11:02pm (Aug 3rd 2008)
     
    I thought she looked like a chinchilla too, but thought I might get ridiculed for saying so!

    Wild rats are quite aggressive and will attack any other animal - they have a very strong 'kill or be killed' instinct. I think the speed they breed scares people too - they can have litters of about 15 when they're just 6 or 7 weeks old. Don't know if they carry more disease - think that idea is left over from the black death, but as they tend to live in sewers it seems more likely.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 1:10am (Aug 4th 2008)
     
    Wot? Ridicule? We wouldn't Kate.

    Hey, thanks for the wild rat info. One thing that I'm curious about (although I feel a little like I'm pushing my luck by saying this aloud) is that I only ever see ONE at the feeders. Maybe its just the bravest. Or else they are taking turns... My rat seems to have a *run or be killed* approach to things, fortunately.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 12:51pm (Aug 4th 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    There's usually one in the family that is sent out to gather food, not sure if it is the male or female.

    What is it in the city - something like you're never more than 6ft away from a rat, or something? :confused:
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 5:41pm (Aug 4th 2008)
     
    Not just the city, I think!
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 6:22pm (Aug 4th 2008)
     
    So when I chase the rat away from the feeders I'm keeping food from all the babies? Oh no...
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 7:58pm (Aug 4th 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    I'm sure s/he'll find food somewhere else, Diane. Sorry, didn't mean to make you feel bad...

    Yeah, guess so CC. There's probably loads more roaming the fields!
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 10:43pm (Aug 4th 2008)
     
    They usually send one rat to taste the food (like in the movie ratatouille) so that if its poisoned they don't all die. That's why rat poison doesn't work so well. It probably is gathering food for the others but your feeder won't be its only source so don't worry. You should chase it away - it'll attack the birds if it gets brave enough.
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 4th, 2008 11:58pm (Aug 4th 2008)
     
    I believe you - its beginning to not run away when I open the window and whistle. Had to open the front door, go out and then jump up and down last time!

    I wouldn't want the job of Taster Rat... To many people out to get you. To say nothing of Mother Nature.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeAug 5th, 2008 1:06pm (Aug 5th 2008)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Hahaha! Bet that was a brilliant thing to see, Diane jumping up and down on the spot to try and get rid of a rat :rolling:
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 5th, 2008 5:48pm (Aug 5th 2008)
     
    Get a plant sprayer and put it on 'jet' Diane; if you squirt it with water you can discourage it without hurting it.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeAug 5th, 2008 9:00pm (Aug 5th 2008)
     
    That's a great idea CC!
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 5th, 2008 9:40pm (Aug 5th 2008)
     
    ...unless of course it's wearing a shower cap and is clutching a bar of soap.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeAug 5th, 2008 10:40pm (Aug 5th 2008)
     
    LOL!! I was just imagining Patrick and Molly queuing outside our shower waiting for their turn!
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 6th, 2008 6:37am (Aug 6th 2008)
     
    LOL - I think I told you all this once, but there was a time when I was trying to get Sidney to move somewhere else. Keep her out of the bird feeders. Yah, I know...why...? But - here's the thing. I tried it all. Even got a book on getting rid of squirrels from the library. The last chapter was titled: "Giving Up."

    Sidney and I would have contests. I would think of something. Try it. Win. Then Sid would sit in the Elder Flower bush and scream at me for a day. Then she'd think of a way around what I had thought up by the next day.

    She got so sure of herself that she wouldn't move when I was out in the yard. So, one day, I got the hose (with nozzle) and walked toward her. She just stared me down. I said: "I'm not kidding." She didn't move. I walked up until I was three feet from her. "I'm REALLY NOT kidding!" *Squirrel stare.* I extended my arm, the nozzle now reminding me uncomfortably of a gun. I held it right in front of her nose. And we just stayed like this for a eon. Then I pulled the trigger and she got the full force of the water jet right in the face.

    I didn't see her for two days and I felt really terrible the whole time. I was so happy when she came back. Since then I've just let her eat from the bird feeder. Oddly, she spends hours there but not that much seed disappears.
    • CommentAuthorJoe
    • CommentTimeAug 6th, 2008 2:55pm (Aug 6th 2008)
     
    Diane you bully :fingersear: we spray the hose at ellie and she loves it
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeAug 6th, 2008 6:14pm (Aug 6th 2008)
     
    So the squirrel won in the end then Diane! I don't think I could've squirted it!
    •  
      CommentAuthorDianeonWhidbey
    • CommentTimeAug 6th, 2008 7:14pm (Aug 6th 2008)
     
    It was a long protracted journey of almost a year to the level of frustration I was feeling by the point, Kate & Joe. One time, I came out to survey a new impenetrable feeder I had purchased and found a perfect, squirrel-sized, hole chewed out of the side of it. Time after time I found things like this. I'm the HUMAN! I'M supposed to win!

    But you are right. I'm a terrible terrible person for squirting her... :cry:

    And now I know - it is squirrels, not humans, who rule!
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeAug 6th, 2008 9:00pm (Aug 6th 2008)
     
    The ability to speak does not necessarily make us the cleverest animal.
    :D