Sunday, 21 June 2009

Back home

Well the good news is that Eggnog is doing great!

Eggnog munching out in the lawn run

We have just had the most wonderful weekend in Devon with our dear friends Bunty and David. They are wonderful hosts though I fear our livers may disagree.

Also visited Paignton Zoo and met up with my great colleague and friend, Curator of Birds Jo Gregson. As ever I was very impressed with the work Jo and her team are doing, especially with cassowaries - here is a picture of one that I hope will soon be at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.

Now that is an impressive bird!
We did take out time to visit Devonshire Traditional Breed Centre in Crediton where I acquired three hopefully fertile buff Orpington eggs.

I'm not a fan of Bramha chickens but this lot were great - full of personality
It's still a lovely collection, the chickens and grounds were a pleasure to see and as ever the staff were great (Thank you Tracey for rushing around and getting fresh Orpington eggs)

If only I had a really big garden it would be FULL of buff Orpingtons

Back home and it was a pleasure to see the mums and chicks. It's been good weather in London over the weekend so some of the plants were a bit saggy but nothing that a good water around the garden didn't cure. Rob and Isobel had done an excellent job with the chickens though Harriet and Ruby had done an excellent job at trashing the run with the chicks.

Ruby on guard

First we got all eight out of the home run and into the lawn run - of course Ruby kicked off big time when we moved her chicks but once they were out on the grass they loved it. Slight problem in that the silkie chicks walked straight through the wire (well the gaps were a bit big) so a rapid job with some smaller wire soon secured the pen for the mums and chicks.

Harriet and Eggnog in the lawn run

So how are the chicks doing?

Eggnog is doing brilliantly. I have NO idea why we are calling him "he", I really want Eggnog to be a girl so fingers crossed. Still staying close to Harriet, Eggnog is now far more visible and he eats with gusto and is becoming a little mister independent.

The two silkie chicks look gorgeous and are fast as hell, they have got the idea of catching flies, just like Harriet - is fly catching a silkie thing?

The buff Orpington bantam is growing really quickly and had the fullest crop.

Most impressive are the speckled Sussex. They have grown faster than anybody, you can see the flight feathers already starting to form on the wings. They scratch about just like the mums and with the size of them I wonder if they are indeed bantams!

It was lovely to be away but it's equally lovely to be home.

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