Archive for February 2nd, 2009

What an eggs-ellent result!

One of the things I wanted to do as a not-a-New-Year’s-resolution-but-the-same-kind-of-thing was to be more organised in my daily life, especially with regards to the animals, such as making note of when I buy feed, how much it costs, how many eggs are laid etc. Suzy suggested setting up a private blog and that’s what I did. One month in, and it has worked!

So I thought I would follow Compostwoman’s lead and blog about the number of eggs laid each month. I’m not running a hen laying league, mainly because I simply don’t know which egg has been laid by which hen as I never seem to be around when they pop them out!

Anyway, I have got 6 adult hens and two point of lay pullets. Five of the adults have been laying regularly all month, with just Buffy the Buff Orpington being the odd one out. she hasn’t really got back into the swing of things since she hatched her chicks back in July but has popped one out every so often.

In fact, her chicks (or at least the females!) are now point of lay pullets – and I think one of the POLs has in fact started laying! They are all in the Cube with the big hens and there were three eggs in the cube nest box yesterday afternoon. If they were laid by Buffy and Willow, the two Buff Orpingtons and Irene, the Light Sussex x Dorking, two would be similar and one would look a bit different. However, all three looked different. Irene’s was long and pale, one was a Buff egg (pale brown) and one was … dark brown with specks!

I could be wrong but I think the speckly egg was laid by the Buff Orpington x Warren who I call, coincidentally enough, Speckle as she has a lovely speckled necklace: a spattering of black in her neck feathers.

I cannot remember what the Warren eggs looked like but I think they were quite round and were a rich brown colour.

Hmm, I seem to have digressed somewhat.

So, the 6 adult hens (I won’t count the POLs as yesterday was the first time I saw such an egg) laid a grand total of 101 eggs in January! The big hens laid 50 and were just pipped by the Silkies and Dolly the Bantam who laid an impressed 51 eggs between them – especially as Mama Silkie is still looking after her three chicks!

Well done girls, I hope you all enjoyed your warm porridge this morning: you deserved it!

Mama Silkie and her trio, Silly Silkie, and Dolly Parton and John Wayne the Pekin Bantams

Mama Silkie and her trio, Silly Silkie, and Dolly Parton and John Wayne the Pekin Bantams

Speckle (Warren x Buff), Fat Boy, Dawn and Willow (Buff Orpingtons), Nemo (Leghorn x Buff Orpington) and Irene (Light Sussex x Dorking)... Where's Buffy the Buff?!

Speckle (Warren x Buff), Fat Boy, Dawn and Willow (Buff Orpingtons), Nemo (Leghorn x Buff Orpington) and Irene (Light Sussex x Dorking)... Where's Buffy the Buff?!

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Castell Coch

I took the dogs for a walk yesterday in the woods surrounding Castell Coch with Jennie and her clan. Despite living in the same valley as Castell Coch for a year in my early twenties, I’ve never visited the castle before. It was closed for refurbishment but I can now confirm that it looks as much of a fairytale castle up close as it does from the train:

Castell Coch - 1 February 2009

Castell Coch - 1 February 2009

We had originally planned on another beach walk but the wind inland was decidedly chilly and we decided that finding out how cold it would be on the coast wasn’t the best plan. Somehow, the protection and shelter of trees seemed like a much better idea!

Jennie's boys and the dogs - 1 February 2009

Jennie's boys and the dogs - 1 February 2009

And, yes, it was a great idea and I had a great time. We walked through the woods for almost two hours, throwing sticks for Snipe (Midge doesn’t do chasing things) and just enjoying ourselves. Bring such a cold day, there weren’t that many people out and about: I can’t imagine how crowded the woods would be at the height of summer!

Midge - 1 February 2009

Midge - 1 February 2009

There were loads of interesting secrets in one part of the woods that we ventured into out of curiosity, such as trees with small doors and windows – and a great big treasure chest! Not to mention the dragon…

Unfortunately, my battery died on me so I couldn’t take any more photos, but I dare say Jennie will post something that explains things!