New Year … same old hens!

Christmas and New Year have come and gone and still I haven’t had a moment to sit and write … I should even now be getting lunch, but the soup is made and if the family want it hot they know where the stove is!

The Hen Garden kept ticking on over the holiday period … but it was hard work getting out there every day in every weather – we’ve had some terrible storms. However, the direction of the wind has meant that, rather than any damage in the garden (if the wind is from the east, west or north), instead we’ve heard it beating against the front of the house (wind from the south west) … it’s been quite wild some nights. And wet … and warm (well, mild for the time of year, anyway). So the grass is saturated, and the girls’ woodchip is caked.

Which means, of course, that so are the hens …

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(Thanks to DD2 for the photos)

Generally we don’t bother the hens about a bit of dirt, but Betsy was a mess, and since she still hasn’t finished her moult, hasn’t that many feathers to keep her warm so they need to be in tip top condition. When DH came in and said she was mucky, I thought he meant that she’d had the runs. She’s not been a happy hen for a few days now, so we’ve been keeping an eye on her. However, once she was in the bath, it was clear that the mess wasn’t her own :o !!

Hopefully now, following her spa treatment, she might perk up a bit.

Other news around the garden … the work is finished and one day soon I’ll get out there with the camera and show you the ground we’ve gained. Too early to seed with grass as yet (I’m sure we’ll have a real winter sometime soon), and I’m not totally sure how I want to use the space. But it’s nice to have a project for the new year.

But our biggest surprise of the season is that we have a broody bantam … again :doh: There are feathers flying around the Moppet House, so someone is moulting, too. But we do still have an egg from time to time.

DH has just come and asked about lunch … I’d really better go so I’ll stop now … talk to you soon! Happy New Year to you all!

Leave a comment


  1. Happy New Year to you and yours.

  2. Happy New Year to you too. That was one mucky girl. I have had a battle with mud too and mine have feet like that a lot of the time but luckily only their feet, mind you they like to jump on me so I have those feet on my back or shoulder! I have to wear my chicken run only, fleece for this reason. New wood chip has made a real difference. Surely this rain can’t go on for ever! Looking forward to seeing what you decide to do in the garden.


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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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