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Free Ranging

Ranging on fresh grass

Ranging on fresh grass

I started letting the birds range in the garden to take pressure off the runs. It is great having all ten layers and the five bantams clucking around the garden. The two cocks are still going at it hammer and tongs, so I have to separate them occasionally. They are at a bit of a standoff now, with the younger bird having the upper hand some of the time and the older one at other times.

I was introduced quickly this evening to the dangers posed in letting the hens out in the garden. As they were scratching around the garden I noticed a young rabbit not far from them. I spooked the rabbit by getting too close to it and it ran under a nearby tree. In a flash, a big cat appeared as if from nowhere and nabbed the poor little rabbit. It never had a chance.

Sheena reading to the chickens

Sheena reading to the chickens

I think that the cat was most likely stalking the chickens but got a bonus of the unsuspecting rabbit when it got too close. So I will have to be careful with the birds.

The eggs have increased in size now, with most of them being medium or large. I’m getting an average of nine eggs a day now – a little more than the family can eat! So we are giving most of them away and managing to sell a small number.

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