Another stunning day

Like the rest of Britain, I barely ventured indoors yesterday, choosing instead to bask in the glorious sunshine. B and I scrubbed out the Eglu and Cube in the morning, thoroughly dusting them with Red Mite powder. Buffy, one of the Buff Orpington hens, has managed to get herself a little infestation, so we gave her a good dusting as well. The others seem clean, so we saved them the indignity, but I’ll be keeping a close eye on them all, just in case.

By the time we’d finished, Jennie and her clan arrived and that marked the beginning of a truly wonderful afternoon. Nothing special happened, it was just one of those days where everything goes the way you want it to. The pigs, dogs and children all behaved themselves (more or less) and we just chilled. Perfect!

Unfortunately, there was a dark cloud looming.

As I turned out of the farm lane to go home, I saw a 4×4 approaching, following a ewe and her lamb. I started to drive off and then remembered the vegetable garden. The unfenced vegetable garden.

The “rule” with loose livestock is that you push them down the nearest entrance to get them off the road. But, if you are told that the animal doesn’t belong at that farm, it’s generally considered polite to help get them off the property, not stand there gawping while someone runs back down the lane in the baking heat, does some shepherding, and then runs back down the lane after the sheep, especially when they ask not once, not twice but three times for help! If that does happen, please expect the very hot, sweaty and tired runner/shepherd to be extremely pissed off. Do not, under any circumstances, make matters worse by lying (“I didn’t push them down your lane”) and then shout “why don’t you come over here and we’ll sort it out now”. Funnily enough, I declined the invitation to have a stand up fight in the middle of the road, especially given the running I’d just done, and instead got back in the car and drove off, much to the relief of the many cars who were at a standstill due to my bad parking.

Ho hum, I fumed all the way home, but the day was still too glorious to be cross, and a cool shower washed away my bad feelings along with the dirt and grime.

The day finished on a high note: dinner and not one but two bowls of chocolate ice cream at Jennie’s that evening. Hurrah!

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6 responses to this post.

  1. You deserved two bowls of ice cream after that!!

  2. I don’t think anyone ever deserves two bowls of ice cream but it was nice to be offered … and even better to hear myself say “yes”!!!

  3. Posted by welshpurpletree on 2 June 2009 at 6:56 pm

    Just wondering how did you find out that Buffy has wee beasties? Could you see them or was there any other really obvious signs? Also how did you go about giving her ‘a good dusting’? My 3 run away as soon as they see the powder coming out.

  4. I check them every week just to make sure they’re mite-free. Buffy had a white build up around the base of her tail feathers, kept pecking herself, shuffling about as though she was itching and generally wasn’t herself. A quick check revealed the little blighters. Actually, they may not have been red mites, but they were red. And mite-like.

    As for the powder, I held her so her bum was tilting skyward and B puffed the powder into her feathers. It shouldn’t need two people so long as you get a good enough grip.

  5. Posted by welshpurpletree on 3 June 2009 at 12:15 pm

    Think Mash might be getting bothered, she seems to be preening a lot more, and acts as though she’s getting bitten. I’ve got some DE powder so will try my best to get it on her and amongst her feathers later. Typical when I’m about to go on hols. Been reading various threads on Omlet Forum – probably scaring myself – lots of people seem to use sprays and things like Xeno 200, but you have to withdraw eggs with them.

    I thought red mites only came out at night to feed, live in the housing during the day?

  6. This is what I’m not sure about, but I did her again this afternoon (beware crouching down and perching a hen on your leg. She will poop…) and she’s much, much better. I couldn’t spot a single beastie, but I’ll do her again in a few days, just in case.

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