May 30, 2010 at 11:54 am #252339
May 28th was Chook Day at last. :clap:We picked up three Barnevelder pullets, a handsome two year old Barnevelder cockerel, and six other pullets – a Red Sussex and a White Sussex, a Blue Australorp and a White Australorp, a Cochin and a Gold Laced Wyandotte. An attractive mix.They have settled in well and it has been fascinating to watch the “pecking order” process unfold, without too much argy bargy, but I don’t think it’s finished yet – maybe the quiet White Australorp will be Top Chook. I thought it was going to be the Cochin but I’ve read they are a bit lazy and I don’t think she could be bothered to see it through! None of them seem to like the poor Wyandotte much – maybe she’s too pretty! I’m going to have to make sure the little Barnies get enough food – they are quite a bit smaller than the others.
My blood ran cold as I heard a fox calling very close this evening and I think I saw a flash of red across the yard when I went out with a torch.If so it wasn’t the same fox that was calling as I could hear that one moving away. I am confident the dome is fox proof around the base as long as they can’t actually rip holes in the small gauge wire netting.Tell me they can’t do that please.
I’ll add some pics tomorrow.May 30, 2010 at 9:45 pm #466997ccBearMember
Well done, where did you get your chooks from was it the local area.
Just double check the dome each morning and night and see if you find any areas the fox was working on. Remeber they have lots of fluffy fur and therefore can slip in to some small spaces to raid your chooks.May 30, 2010 at 10:57 pm #466998marzMember
I can see someone spending a lot of time watching chooks, I know I did when I first got mine 😀 (still do actually).
We don’t have a problem with foxes here as the dogs chase them away, or bark at night if they hear something. Have forgotten to close the chook door a couple of times but all still there next day.
Good luck with your new arrivals.
Have pm’d you.May 31, 2010 at 12:31 pm #466999
ccBear and marz ………..I just wrote a long post about Life in the Dome but was timed out when I posted :uhoh:……….another lesson for Techno Nana.”Write it somewhere else and copy/paste.” Also DH has to help me get pics off my camera .He gave me a card reader for my birthday last week …… hint, hint! More tomorrow.May 31, 2010 at 12:34 pm #467000ccBearMember
No problems tomorrow is a new adventure. See you there. :tup:June 1, 2010 at 6:54 am #467001
Hi guys. I am going to post this in two instalments in case I run into trouble. Techno Nana strikes again.
Ccbear Yes I purchased my chooks locally. The Barnevelder pullets came from Murgon State High School Ag Dept., and all the others from PoultryPals near Murgon, QLD. They have a great web site and can supply many rare breeds. They personally deliver orders as far North as Cairns and to NSW and Northern Vic. I am confident there are no spaces for fox invasion from above or below, so as long as they canâ€™t dig â€œThe Great Escapeâ€ type tunnels or rip the actual wire mesh apart I think all should be well.
Marz â€¦..Yes, but I have to get to know my girls and their boy! The rooster is Mr Clogs (Barnies are a Dutch breed) and he has two Dutch girls â€“ Tulip and Carla. Then we have Miss Ping the Chinese Cochin, Fifi the Blue Australorp because I thought she was going to be a French Faverolle, a Red Sussex â€“ Little Miss Chatterbox because she is and Goldy the Gold Laced Wyandotte. Two are to be named yet â€“ waiting for inspiration â€“ White Australorp and White Sussex.I’m thinking Beyonce and Shakira but that would be copying.
They all seem to have settled in well. The big Cochin IS fat and lazy and will happily sit and watch the others earning their keep as they prepare my veg garden beds .I do realise that Miss Pingâ€™s feathered legs and feet arenâ€™t the best for negotiating long grass but I get the distinct impression that she thinks all that scratching is beneath her. I am puzzled that Mr Clogs has not crowed once since he arrived, night ,dawn or day , although heâ€™s doing all the other rooster things. Heâ€™s two years old and has had lots of babies so has plenty to crow about . I hope heâ€™s not feeling hen pecked â€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦sorry! I am checking this No Crow with the breeder in case itâ€™s a problem. Any comments from those in the know? I donâ€™t mind a quiet rooster but preferably not a mute one. He does gape a bit too. Something stuck in his throat? Heâ€™s active, and eating and drinking OK.
Time for a pic!June 1, 2010 at 7:03 am #467002
Whoops! Forgot to resize the pic. Now the size is right but too many Kb.Not sure how to do that so I’ll just add Mr Clogs for now and add his girls later.June 1, 2010 at 7:11 am #467003
:confused: Sorreeeeee! Mr Clogs with the White Sussex and White Australorp.June 1, 2010 at 7:42 am #467004
At least I can type………I’ll try pics again later.
Roosting time has been an absolute circus. The two Sussex roost peacefully in the egg box â€“ how clever are they! â€“ while the rest fuss and flap and carry on for ages all on the top perch â€“ plenty of other space – and pretty much on top of each other. Too many Top Chook Wannabees ? Even the little Barnies, much smaller, have been right in there. I have changed the perches today so that they are all on the same level. Just went to say Goodnight. The roost is much quieter with everyone more or less settled.I think the Cochin is saying she has a headache ……….not too much wrong with Mr Clogs methinks.;)
I have so appreciated ALS members’ earlier posts and links to the experiences, good and bad, of previous â€œDomersâ€ which have helped me clarify my own plans and perhaps modify some expectations for this whole project. One member commented that the chooks were unable to scratch deep enough to remove running grass. This is becoming apparent already, but after only three days the grass is thinned out and it is obvious where the runners start, so I spent a happy half hour on hands and knees with the chooks ripping the runners out and will continue rendering them this assistance for the first rotation. Nothing like seeing my garden staff eye to eye! Iâ€™m not going to add my intended mulch as per Linda Woodrow â€“ old grassy hay – while the chooks are there as Iâ€™ve learnt it can harbour a fungus in the genus Aspergillosis which can cause serious respiratory disease in young birds. Iâ€™m wondering if I should remove the hay bales from around the dome which are part of the fox defences on top of a pegged down wire skirt, and perhaps not use the hay at all while the chooks are on site. Any advice out there? I turn out the barley straw in the nest box daily so thatâ€™s nice pooey mulch anyway.
Well, enough from The Dome for now. If thereâ€™s interest I will keep this updated.
PS Did you know that you can tell from the colour of a chook’s earlobes what colour eggs they are going to lay? I was VERY close to chook earlobes today and it figures.How cool is that?:metal:June 1, 2010 at 8:04 am #467005
Just found a response from the breeder re Mr Clog’s silence, so I’ll add it here. Will ask about the gaping too. “He wasn’t yet fully back from his moult Rosemary so that could be it.
They were all just wormed so that could also be the discharge.” ( I found some sloppy poos today)
“Once he has fully feathered up he should crow but heavy breeds don’t crow as much as leghorn or game either
Let me know how he progresses.”
Oh Wow! Mr Clogs looks pretty good now so with all his feathers he’ll be stunning! Even Miss Ping may be won over.:kiss:June 1, 2010 at 11:47 am #467006
I’ll just try to find a pic that ticks all the boxes.June 1, 2010 at 12:04 pm #467007
Miss Ping the Cochin.June 1, 2010 at 12:23 pm #467008
Tulip and Carla, Barnevelder pullets.Not the best pic.June 1, 2010 at 9:09 pm #467009KarmaMember
Look really nice chooks.:DJune 1, 2010 at 10:01 pm #467010sue eMember
they are very pretty BL. Great to see it all coming together so well. i wish our rooster was mute. we are now in suburbia.(we tried to outrun it but it has caught up with us) so no rooster allowed here now. unfortunately our Barry does not comply with council regs. and insists on crowing day and night. hubbie locks him up each night-the theory being that if they can’t lift their heads beyond a certain level they are unable to crow. Barry hasn’t heard this rule either! but at least in his box the noise is somewhat muffled. He has a particularly protective disposition and god help anyone who ventures into the backyard when they are out- me being the main victim with a couple of nasty punctures from his onslaughts. hubbie won’t hear of getting rid of him as he is afraid he will be eaten! just give me a knife and fork and i would love to have the last word so to speak!:D:D:D
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