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Saturday, 4 May 2013

Bluebell and Blossom are slowly settling in. . .

Here is Blossom and Bluebell ready for day three in their new home.  Bluebell has the blue leg ring.  I can actually tell these ladies apart because they have got different markings.  They are 'Rhode Rocks' a Hybrid.  My other three 'ginger' chickens were like clones.  With the first chickens I was amazed to discover each chicken had her own personality and we really bonded as we had them since they were eggs.  They were very used to being handled as they lived in our living room for 6-8 weeks!  They were in a brood box under a heat lamp, they did not free range around the house.  I am not quite that dotty.  There was  one day when the dog opened their gate and invited them into the house last Summer.  I never fall asleep on the sofa but I did that day.  I woke up to find two chickens watching the television (they always loved the tv) and there was another happily exploring the kitchen.  The dog looked mightily pleased with herself.  I am sure they saw me as 'The Mother Hen' and I felt the weight of responsibility.  They always greeted me with abundant enthusiasm.
         I do not look at a live chicken and think 'dinner'. . .well not very often any way.  When the others sat under the sage bush, I could not help thinking about the delicious combination.  . .baaaadddd chicken mama!  I can't believe I love chickens but still eat chicken.  Euan has a policy 'we do not eat animals that we know'.   That is quite noble and good news for the dog and the budgie.  I think in an ideal world we would only eat animals we know, then we could be sure that the animals we ate had lives free from 'pain or distress'.  I am not cut out for farming at all however much I like to think I am and the whole 'to eat meat or not to eat meat debate' is a massive and often controversial topic.  Having 'pet' chickens has made me realise they are not a food product, they are happy, intelligent, sentient beings that are able to experience pain and pleasure.  My girls used to like a trip to the 'Beauty Salon' and enjoyed a 'wash and blow dry' pamper experience and would happily cluck away under the hair dryer.
         Blossom and Bluebell are very different to our previous chickens.  They don't know me at all yet and it is a bit sad that they think I am very frightening.  I had not seen them venture out at all.  Euan had a steady stream of children going up and down the garden last night to show off his new 'sisters'.  I think all of the kids on our street have had a formal introduction now.  He assured me he had seen them both out and eating and drinking.  I went up to the coop this morning to take a photograph of them huddled in the next box.  I was surprised to see them out, they were surprised to see me too but they did not run away.  I am talking to them in my 'nicest, as reassuring as I can get' voice and I am telling them nice things.  I don't think it would be a good idea for me to transcribe a 'chicken chat' for you because you never know who is reading your blog and I do not want the men in white coats to arrive to take me away.  I haven't heard a cluck yet but they are making cute little 'coo's and peeps'.  This morning they looked a little bit interested in what I had to say rather than just plain terrified and they chatted back a tiny bit, so I think we are making progress.  I know I need to handle them regularly so they are not afraid but I really don't want to traumatise the poor things.  I can't trust them to free range yet because catching a terrified chicken is no easy task.
 I am amazed my little apple tree is not so little this year and it is smothered in blossom.  Soon the garden will have oodles of fruit that the chickens can  happily  gorge themselves on.  A chicken doing standing jumps for the fattest raspberry is quite a sight.  We will be competing to harvest the blackcurrants too. It is all happening in the garden again.  I have seedlings and vegetable plants and lots of chicken wire.  It is a long weekend as Monday is a Bank Holiday. . . I do love a Bank Holiday.  
Hope you are having a good weekend.  XXX   

6 comments:

  1. Aww sweettttt bluebell and blossoms...
    Enjoy the spring..
    Big hugs x

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  2. Beautiful blossoms, happy Beltane x

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  3. Those are two good looking chooks you have there! So funny to think of how proud Euen is of them and showing them to all the neighbor kids. I'm thrilled about how things are going for you! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  4. Hi There, So glad you're enjoying your girls!!! Can't wait to see some more photos of your garden!!! Have a super happy holiday on Monday!!!!
    Love
    AMarie

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  5. Such cute girls! Im sure they will soon settle in.

    Helenxx

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  6. Happy Hens indeed ^_^ The apple blossom looks so pretty!
    XOX

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