Compassion in World Farming

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

It's wet & muddy outside....but it's dry inside at last!

Tonight our barn is resounding with the sound of ....... SILENCE. Blissful silence! No more fans blowing noisily away, no more dehumidifiers with their incessant, annoying humming! We're officially dry enough for the machines to be taken away. Which means that the insurance company should be in touch tomorrow to explain what happens with the repairs now.

There should be a shower here.

The bathroom needs putting back together.

New carpets & skirtings need to be fitted.

Walls need to be reconstructed & decorated.

It's amazing how much damage a water leak can do! But I'm very hopeful now that the place will be in a fit enough state for Mum & Dad to come & share the festive season with us, even if things are going to still be higgledy piggledy when Eldest Son comes home from Uni for his Xmas hols this Sunday.

It was also fairly dry last weekend, which meant that I got to spend some time with the new cockerels in our little field. They are coming on really well. Their plumage is getting more & more impressive as they grow bigger by the day. They are still young enough to be fairly meek, but grown up enough to hold their own with the hens now & strut their stuff about the field! What I'm most pleased about is how friendly & gentle they are. This, of course, I can't take the credit for. It's down to the way my friend Andy reared them - with love & kindness. They are hand tame & it's lovely to feed them corn from my hands (youngest son loves it too!). They are certainly more gentle than some of the hens, who shall remain nameless, who fair take your skin off when they come to enjoy a treat (ok it's the ex-battery girls, but it's not their fault. They're not so used to being fed from a caring human hand!).

Here's the gorgeous Merlin, the Copper Blue Maran cockerel, strutting his stuff! His colouring is stunning, shades of grey perfectly offsetting dramatic flashes of copper & gold. Of the four he seems to enjoy my company the most for some reason & is usually to be found close by me.

And here is mild mannered Mr Dorking, a Silver Dorking cockerel. He's a delightful, charming soul. He fixes me with calm eyes that seem filled with wisdom & knowledge - of what I'm not quite sure. I'm sure he will sit down & tell me one day!

This is handsome Snapdragon, showing off the beautiful green sheen in his feathers. He is a Welsummer cockerel. He's a very busy chap, always on the move, running about the place like some kind of action hero. Super Cockerel maybe? He's going to be quite the dandy.

And last, but by no means least, is Spicy, also a Welsummer. His nickname is Baby Spice at the moment, because he seems to be the 'baby' of the boys and therefore, it follows, the one I feel most clucky over. I'm sure he doesn't thank me for it, but I keep telling him that one day he is going to be so magnificent that it his nickname will seem ridiculous & we will laugh about it!

It is so lovely to have them as part of our flock and to be able to endlessly chat & share pictures of them with Andy, knowing he won't get fed up with me! Hubby & sons often look at me with that 'yeah, so it's yet another picture of one of the chickens' look.

Of course, certain of our feathered friends have enjoyed all this wet weather and are having trouble understanding why I am not quite so pleased with all the mud they have created!

Daisy & Seymour the Aylesbury ducks have made what they think is a stonkingly good mud slide into their pond! Hmmmm!

Its no good looking so innocent - I know which one of you has been dabbling again!

Something exciting happened at the weekend. Dear Izzy Whizzy, my Cream Legbar hen finally, at nine months old, stayed still long enough to lay me a beautiful blue egg! Hurray! I can now fill an egg box with pretty coloured eggs for my friends.

Every time I write about my critters it makes me beam from ear to ear & reminds me of just how much happiness they bring to my heart. True blessings from Mother Nature, each & every one of them & treasured beyond measure.


  1. nice to have you back!! I am so sick of the wet weather!!! oh for a late heatwave!!!!

    the cockerels look lovely......have they started to fight yet???...u know if they are ok now, things may change in the spring!!!

    blog more often sara...I miss your blogs

  2. Hmm watch out for Mr two Silver Dorking Cockerels ( Long John Silver and Cap't Flint...) were lovely until about 25 weeks old and then they became really nasty.......!

  3. Glad you can get on with your insurance claim now... and soon back to some normality!
    As ever its a delight to see updates on your much loved chickens and cockerels... and the gorgeous ducks that are having the best time!!
    Love Jane xxx

  4. The four cockerels show no signs of aggression as yet, and as they have been brought up together I'm hoping that they will always tolerate each other well. They have a good number of hens to service & a nice open area to roam in so I don't think there is much else I can do but continue to treat them with love & kindness & see what happens. I have seen how nasty cockerels can be with one another. We had 2 bantam cockerels Rodney & Delboy who were gold as gold with one another until my neighbour got some cockerels. Their crowing set my 2 bantams against each for some reason & they fought until Delboy was very badly wounded. Unfortunately I didn't get to Delboy in time to save him & he died very soon afterwards. It was very sad day indeed. My youngest son's friend had a big cockerel who terrorised the family! He would fly at them with his beak & claws & could inflict a nasty wound if you weren't either armed or very quick on your feet! They had to dispatch him in the end. Lets hope my gentle boys remain as calm & wonderful as they are into adulthood. There's nothing to suggest otherwise at the moment. :o)