Oh what a day!

I have never been a football fan although my husband is. I watch England matches during the world cup and my husband watches every match. He records those that are on while we are working and watches them later.

I started by watching the second half of the early England matches but watched all of the last one and found myself looking forward to Saturday’s match! I bought some beers and the ingredients for a barbecue and settled in to watch the match. We were euphoric by the end of the first half. It really felt like we were in with a chance this time.

During half time I went up to check on the chooks. I have been giving them frozen peas every afternoon since I first posted it here when the weather became ridiculously hot.

It immediately became apparent that Emerald was in trouble. She has been suffering from the heat the most. She is elderly, she is moulting and she has black plumage. This is the worst combination in the heat. Mostly she sits in the shade but she was on the patio area with her beak wide open and her wings held aloft. Then she wobbled and stumbled and looked like she could barely stay on her feet. I was alarmed.

I realised that frozen peas were not enough. I think she had spent her time sitting in the shade and probably had not been eating or drinking enough. I added an ice cube to the now warm peas but she wasn’t interested. I decided to make some mash with cold water and added a couple of ice cubes to it. I then added chopped grapes to the top of it and put it in front of Emerald.

Emerald started to eat the chopped grape and then a bit of the mash. I knew that the second half would have started by now and I thought that it would be just my luck to miss a goal but I felt that Emerald’s welfare depended on me and that was more important. I coaxed her to eat the grape by dropping it in front of her. She gradually ate some grape and drank the pooled water around the ice cubes and then some of the sloppy, chilled, mash. She started to look better. Crisis averted.

I went back inside to find that England had indeed scored a second goal. Never mind, I could see it on the many repeats. I watched the end of the match and we won, hurrah!

I have realised that I must give Emerald some extra T.L.C. From now on she will have mash with ice cubes every day and chopped grapes on top. I must make sure she eats and drinks enough during this heat wave.

What a lot of drama for one day. The next thing was to see what the chicks would do at bedtime.

At nine o’clock when they usually go in I went to check on them. Cinnamon and Dandelion were next to each other on the left perch. The chicks were hovering at the edge of the patio area. It was if they knew that this was the way they needed to go but it was as if the patio was a taboo area and it would take courage to cross it.

I herded them across the patio area and through the pop hole which was actually quite easy. Once inside the pop hole they set about digging in the shavings which was what they used to do when they went into the little coop.

They are through the pop hole

I checked back a little later and they were heaped in the corner.

They settle in the corner

A little after half past nine the pop hole had closed and I had got the bigger girls in. I decided to try to perch the chicks again. I know it will take a bit of time for them to perch on their own but at the moment while it’s so hot I think they will be cooler on the perch than heaped in the corner.

I settled the chicks on the perch once more

I swept the patio area to give them a few minutes to settle and then looked back in. They were still perched albeit in a tight huddle. It’s a work in progress but it’s going in the right direction. Phew, what a day!

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12 Responses to Oh what a day!

  1. Rebecca says:

    Sorry for your heat troubles. We used to give our girls a foot bath they could wade in when it got really hot here (over 100) for an extended period of time. Also we would freeze bug hunks of watermelon for them to eat. They would eat down to the thin green rind.

    • Carol says:

      I have tried a cold bath to stand in, in the past, but found it really difficult to get them to stand in it and Emerald is too elderly now for that sort of thing. I do give them melon so freezing chunks of melon is a good idea. It is 90 (32) degrees here at the moment which is very hot for us.

  2. Sophie says:

    Aw poor Emerald – I know how she feels….it’s been far too hot!! My seramas however absolutely love it – I let them out of their run (under strict supervision of course!) and they all just pile up on the patio together with their wings outstretched and proceed to bake themselves!

    Oh the match! I watched it with my husband and some neighbours – my neighbour thought it was highly amusing that I got so worked up – it gave me such a headache! So proud of our boys!! 🙂

    The chicks look so cute – especially Jasmine – how old are they now? xx

    • Carol says:

      Emerald is not at all good this morning. I think she may be nearing her end which breaks my heart. She is about six years old which is the oldest I have got a girl to yet.

      The chicks are about three months now. The breeder thought they were about two months although I think they may have been younger and we have had them for six weeks now. xx

  3. Sophie says:

    Oh I’m sorry to hear that 🙁 xx

    • Carol says:

      Yesterday I thought it was just the heat getting too much for her but today I am having difficulty in getting her to eat anything. I have managed to get her to have some bits of grape but it’s hard work which isn’t good and to cap it all Blue has just crowed for the first time. xx

  4. marion.pharo says:

    Sorry to hear the news that Emerald is not well, This heat is to much, you are doing your very best for her. So Blue has crowed, Was it a very loud crow?

    • Carol says:

      Emerald is really struggling, it’s not been a good day. I will update at the end of the day. Blue’s crow was obvious but it was the crow of a young bird and a bit strangulated. Apparently that is how they start until they get into their stride. He did it about five or six times in a row and then hasn’t done it since.

  5. David says:

    So sorry for Emerald. It’d be great if she managed to rally, but the strain of producing new feathers, combined with the heat and what is really old age for a chicken, will be debilitating for her.

  6. Jenny says:

    I have posted on the next one about Emerald x And my Bernadette.

    On a more positive note – I have decided there is a new meaning of the verb ‘to heap’ – in a sentence -‘ the chicks are heaping again’. Sound s a bit rude but as you have ones of a similar age to mine you’ll know exactly what I mean.

    • Carol says:

      I know exactly what you mean by the chickens heaping. The chicks are still heaping each night but I am moving them to the perch. They will get the hang of it soon.

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