A tribute to Freckles

Sadly I had to make the decision to have Freckles put to sleep on Saturday. I had pulled a soft shelled egg from her vent and cleaned her up but she didn’t recover and I couldn’t let her suffer any longer.

I often think if anyone reads my history of chicken keeping it may be enough to put them off of chicken keeping and if anybody reads my history with seramas it would definitely put them off. I try so hard to give my girls the best life I can but I do believe that I have been unlucky with my breeders.

Before I do a tribute to Freckles I will just recap and it doesn’t make good reading.

My seramas

31/8/16 I bought home Caramel and Pebbles from my first breeder. They were her last two girls as she was giving up breeding them. 20/9/16 I had to have Caramel put to sleep as she had a really advanced case of mycoplasma and this had now brought this to my flock. We had her for three weeks.

17/12/16 I had to have Pebbles put to sleep for the same reason. We had her for four months.

I found another breeder and brought home Rusty and Freckles on 25/9/16.

From this breeder I brought home Cinnamon, Dandelion and Apricot on 25/2/17.

On 30/9/16 we lost Rusty at home after her second prolapse. We had her for a year.

On 9/4/18 we lost Apricot overnight just as she would have been coming in to lay. We had her for one year and one month.

On 30/6/18 I had to have Freckles put to sleep after constantly laying soft shelled eggs and getting one stuck partly inside her. We had her for one year and nine months which is our longest serama so far.

Dandelion has also had some soft shelled eggs and a slight prolapse but so far has bounced back. She laid her second, good shelled egg, today, after her prolapse.

Cinnamon is the only one not suffer this but right from when we first had her she has always almost turned herself inside out when she poops. We thought she would be the most likely to prolapse but we now think that it’s been her saving grace. We think that she has strengthened her muscles and that is why she is doing okay. My son said it’s a bit like pelvic floor exercises, he has a year old son which is why he would know this!

We have had Dandelion and Cinnamon for one year and four months. Dandelion is like the cat with nine lives and has had many moments when we thought we would lose her but she has managed to come back each time.

We have now found a third breeder and brought home three chicks, Blue, Sienna and Jasmine on 20/5/18. We have had them for five months. We hope these will prove to be healthy although we strongly suspect that Blue is a cockerel but that is a different story.


Rusty and Freckles when we first got them

Rusty and Freckles as chicks

These two were inseparable and Freckles was top serama from the start and remained that way until she left us.

Freckles tail feathers are amazing

This was Freckles with her new tail feathers after her moult hence the pale comb.

Freckles squatting

Freckles would drop into a squat when I came up behind her or touched her back. She squatted more than any of the other girls and it made it really easy to pick her up.

Freckles looks amazing

Freckles when broody

Freckles when I lift her out of the nest box when broody

Freckles would go broody regularly and her tail would rise up over her back. I would take her from the nest box and she would sit for a while until I moved her on.

Freckles portrait

Freckles was a lovely looking girl. She will be sadly missed.

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8 Responses to A tribute to Freckles

  1. Sophie says:

    Sleep well sweet Freckles xx

  2. marion.pharo says:

    Such a lovely girl,Iknow how much you must miss her.
    But you must feel proud that you gave her a grand life.

    • Carol says:

      The flock once again looks very small even adding the chicks. I did my best for her but it is still so sad. My first two girls from that breeder are both gone now in such a short time. I hope a new breeder will mean longer lived birds, I have to say birds as I can no longer say girls!

  3. David says:

    Hi, Carol
    I have been out of the loop increasingly for the past couple of weeks, for reasons with which I’ll not bore you. I have logged on this evening and read your series of posts with disbelief. I am so very sorry that Freckles’ demise has come in this way, a cruel twist of nature, really. You have had such appalling luck with the seramas, but at least Dandelion seems to be over her latest hurdle and Cinnamon retains her strength (I loved the post you did about her feet and her digging). I have also lost one of my favourites this past week – Galaxy, the chocolate pekin, who came as a cheeping chick in August 2013. She was so tame and I haven’t had the heart to tell my granddaughter as yet – fortunately, she’s more into watering the plants than going into the hen run at the moment, but she will notice before long.

    Sorry about Blue and sorry that I made it obvious what I thought some time ago. He is a beautiful bird but, as you say, neighbours would not appreciate his frequent and persistent contributions. The cockerel collar, as advertised on ebay, seems to have some positive effect – I think that there are videos on you tube.

    Thinking of you.

    • Carol says:

      Don’t worry, I knew you would catch up eventually. I am so sorry that you have lost Galaxy, I remember you referring to her often. I think things that are meant to stop cockerels from crowing are rather cruel so I won’t go down that route. You only said what I had been thinking but I kept trying to talk myself out of it. I knew you would be much too polite to say – I told you so! I will cross my bridges as I get to them as I can’t turn the clock back. It’s all been very stressful but I am getting my head around it now. It’s good to hear from you. xx

  4. Kevin says:

    I’m also just catching up, so sorry to read this Carol. Hope you’re ok.

    • Carol says:

      Oh, I have been through the mill. I was really down and then have gradually had to come back up again. It has been awful but it has to go on so I am trying to bounce back as there isn’t anything else you can do really. Onwards and upwards as they say. I am getting my head around it now and progressing on and will continue to cross my bridges as I come to them. It is good to hear from you.

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