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Here come the girls!

After 10 years of wanting my very own chickens I can happily say that I am now an official chicken keeper! It was definitely worth the wait, I am completely and utterly smitten with them and they’ve been a huge distraction so far…

To say I was excited about them arriving is an understatement, the coop was actually purchased last Autumn and has been sitting waiting for their arrival. I knew that I had to wait until the garden show season was over so I could give them my full attention. As we would be away for weeks throughout the Spring and Summer I thought it would be a tad unfair to leave my Mum home alone to sort them out, plus Ted also needs some training too as he’s never seen chickens…

The girls have been here a whole month now and they’ve settled in perfectly. The top hen seems to have been appointed quite quickly as I haven’t witnessed any fighting or bullying and they all seem to get on lovely. So all in all a happy hen house!

 I purchased 10 hens altogether, a rather strange mix of breeds but I am so happy with them. Another fan of the chickens has been my nephew who absolutely adores them. You’ll often find him sitting with them in the orchard, taking photos of them and feeding them endless swiss chard. In fact because he was so excited for them to arrive I even purchased one just for him and he’s been a big help with them so far. 

Here’s a list of the breeds I went for as well as their names (you’ll notice a bit of a theme!): 

  • Buff Orpington – Molly. 
  • Specledy – Minerva. 
  • Beechwood Blue – Fleur. 
  • Rhode Rock – Bellatrix (almost entirely black with green) and Narcissa (brown neck).
  • Calder Ranger – Hermione (light brown) and Sybil (dark brown).
  • Silkie – Andromeda (Black), Tonks (Cuckoo) and Mantis (Gold)
That’s right… I just couldn’t resist naming them after Harry Potter characters! Although all you fellow Harry Potter fans can probably make out which one is my nephew’s silkie? 

I’ve been spending as much time as I can sitting down in the run with them so they could get used to me, often taking my cup of tea down there. Then after a couple of weeks we let them out to explore the orchard which they love. We even erected a new fence and gate to stop them venturing into the kitchen garden, so now they are completely free range.

They all have their own personalities which are starting to shine through and it’s been wonderful to watch. Molly the Buff Orpington is by far the most shy, whereas Bellatrix and Narcissa are the bravest. I didn’t actually want to name any of the hens after the villians in the francise but both the Rhode Rocks were so confident, bold and not afraid of anything… Then when they started pecking us I decided on their names!

I know you shouldn’t have favourites but the silkies have really stolen my heart. I just love everything about them, not only are they unbelievably cute but they have the nicest temperament. I think the fluffy feet and tufty hairstyle does it for me! Andromeda in particular is my number one, just don’t tell the others… And to think I wasn’t going to get Silkies until right up to the last minute. I’m so glad I did because now I want more!

So far we are getting 3 eggs a day and I think I know who the layers are… Fleur usually lays first thing in the morning as there is always an egg waiting for me, in fact she was the first of the hens to lay. Then Narcissa produces an egg around 10.30am, followed by Tonks who has decided to lay her perfectly small white egg underneath the coop. When they first arrived I was getting a little worried that none of them were laying, then Fleur started and that was it… Until I rolled the coop back and found 5 silkie eggs underneath! 

So the first month of chicken keeping has been a huge success and I’ve loved every second (even cleaning them out!) They’ve been the biggest distraction but I really can’t imagine life without them, in fact now I’m thinking that I only have 10 and my coop can supposedly fit at least 16… Crazy chicken lady mode has officially been initiated!

Comments (2)

  1. Lovely to see that you now have the chickens.When I had my allotment,the chickens were my favourites.Wow how much progress have you all made since moving to Wales?Best Wishes to you all x
  2. I found you , I followed you in your allotment pretty garden shed in lock down and did you marry your sheep farmer , he gave you a lamb , you used to travel to wales to see him . And your little dog Ted , you were making a little coat , I remember you sitting in your knitting room , knitting away happily, you made your boyfriend a hat !!!!!! Ted by your side , do you know I kept the calendar I brought one year with your photo’s you took ( loved the sunflower one ) nice chatting, hope your your well , love your chickens and names are lovely, where did you get your chicken coup please , x

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