15 September 2010


We have a new helper with the girls - so far she has survived trial by swimming with Bear and also trial by beach on a cold day with Bear - she's doing well, even when Bear decided it was an excellent idea to combine the two...well, she only sat in the edge of the sea so not really swimming but she might just as well have been for the wetness/sand factor.

No seizures yet so hopefully she'll get training before she's in the deep end with that too, but despite our best efforts she's still with us, still keen and so far so good.

When we asked Bear if she liked her, she of very few words said "Good" What higher endorsement can there be?

Ducklings are doing great and growing like weeds, already twice the size they were and will shortly be on to duck grower rather than chick crumbs.

I have cleared all other eggs away as nothing was happening. It was a bit hopeful to have chicks so late in the year but as the hens were so broody I thought I'd give them a fair go. Let's see what happens next spring.

In other animal news, we are giving serious thought to getting a second dog. I confess to being lead astray by my good blog buddy Michelle but we, Hot-Hubs and me, feel Meg would like a friend. It'll be tricky to find the right friend though because, as those of you who have met my little sanity keeper will know, Meg is a people dog and whilst she likes to meet doggy friends she also likes to meet their humans too. Truth be told she loves anyone with a ball who'll throw it for her and much as I love to think of her as mine she is a bit of a tart like that. The other thing to consider is we are firm believers in getting second hand dogs for two reasons:

1 - there are SO many dogs who need a home

2 - we don't have the time or household to train a puppy so a dog that already has the basics is a good thing.

3 - both Ollie and Meg were rescue dogs and both were and are the most amazing, loving, patient creatures ever.

OK that's three reasons. Guess we'll be visiting the local shelter a few times. I've already got a note of the visiting hours ...because it's something Bear would like to do and it's free (Yep, he fell for that one!)

We're looking for a boarder collie or similar about a year - 18 months old who's good with poultry, sheep, other dogs, cats and kids. Easy?

05 September 2010

We have Ducklings

Yes, after much heartache and misadventure we have 12 duckling from two hatchings.

This is Gracie with her 10

And this is Wander (at the front) with one of hers just moments after hatching. Tiddler (in the background) may be about to hatch a couple too. As you can see they seem to have a habit of brooding eggs right in the wrong place - first Wander thought it an excellent idea to sit under the topper in the front field, now with a little more success she thought rightin the doorway of the hen house was a good bet. Only thing is every time a chicken went in or out they had to stomp all over her and got pecked and prodded for their trouble, poor things!

I'm having to monitor the bird situation very carefully to avoid casualty to crows and/or cats. The move to the nursery block from the hen house (she was under the roosting bars!) was a little traumatic for Gracie but she's over it now and guarding her babies well.

At least this means I'll be able to give the chicken house a really good clean out - ducks don't see cleaning as a necessary part of life and will attack you for getting too close, although they do like having new bedding when the maids' been in!