It’s been a long time …

… I have often wanted to spend time writing something for this blog, but various events have taken over and I really haven’t had a moment recently to spend on my own interests. So before the Christmas rush really takes hold, I am grasping an opportunity while I can, before it slips away into yet more paperwork or preparation or publicity (you can tell from the alliteration that I am still ‘in the zone’ as regards work!) …

But really, there hasn’t been a lot of news to share. Still, one or two significant changes have happened, not least losing a hen. Molly suffered badly during her moult, avoiding all contact with the other hens, but even once her feathers began to break out of their sheaths, she didn’t recover. She got slower and slower, and ate less and less, until one morning she wasn’t really moving at all, so we took the decision to cull her. She had lost a lot of weight, so I wonder if we should have taken action sooner, but it’s never easy to be sure with hens.

Not quite all the remaining five have fully feathered as yet … but Milly has surprised us all with her new colour scheme … this was a couple of weeks ago, when we began to wonder about what colour she was going to become …


… and this is today …


She may still simply end up much darker all over, but for now, the mottled effect is most unusual and very attractive!

It’s much colder now, but the Vicarage girls continue to lay … from the eggs, I would guess that one girl lays most days, and there is often a second egg alongside it. One or two days recently, since we lost Molly, we had four eggs from the remaining five girls … not bad for November! But I don’t expect it to continue.

The Moppets seem happy enough. They are only laying sporadically now, an egg or two every other day or so, and I expect they will stop altogether soon. They are still moulting … looking a little scruffy round the edges, but none of them have had any bald patches, and they are still so fluffy it’s not easy to see any new feathers breaking through.

There are changes in the garden too … but I’ll have to wait until the work is finished to take a photo and explain – it’s all rather complicated! Ultimately, it may mean a little more space for the Moppets, but we’ll have to wait for spring if we decide to grass it over. I might try and pave it, instead. I won’t be able to decide until I see the finished result.

In the meanwhile, life goes on and I need to keep up! See you soon x


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  1. Good to hear how they are doing and I approve of the red setter colouring of Milly. So sad about Molly too and it is always hard to tell when to call it in terms of doing something to end an animals life. So sad.

    Looking forward to whatever new you have planned for the garden,

  2. Sad to hear about Molly. Milly looks amazing. I look forward to hearing more when you are able to get back to us again.


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    Our original hen keeping adventure came to an end in January 2013, when a fox took our entire brood of hens. But don’t let that put you off … you can find the story at The Hen House Archive where there are still lots of stories, photos, and information about keeping hens I hope you'll find useful.

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