Yesterday we took a trip to Whitehouse Farm. This is where we get our disposables and is also is where we have rehomed some of our girls in the past.
We rehomed Peaches and Barley at the farm last spring, one and a half years ago. We have visited them in between and I went along yesterday to see if they were still around.
Moira, the farmer, wasn’t around so I just wandered through the orchard where the chickens hang out. I know that she is happy for me to visit them when we are collecting disposables.
I soon spotted Peaches but there was no sign of Barley. As the two were inseparable I can only conclude that sadly she may have been taken by a fox. I know that Moira has a problem with foxes being quite bold even during the daytime.
There was also no sign of Claude, the huge cockerel, that had been resident for many years but he may well have passed to old age. Without seeing Moira I can only speculate so perhaps shouldn’t make too many guesses.
I spotted a new set up of an enclosed run and large coup and went to investigate. It was a breeding pen for silkies. I know Moira likes to take on new projects. There was one cockerel, possibly a replacement for Claude and three adult hens. There was another smaller hen which I would consider was at the “teenage” stage and there were seven chicks.
There was another empty smaller run and coup nearby so I would assume the mother and chicks had been in there until the chicks were big enough to integrate with the other silkies. They were all getting along happily.
I am only able to identify Peaches because her comb flops to the left and Barley’s comb flopped to the right. She is moulting and the pair of them always looked very shabby when they were moulting and their combs would be very reduced in size.
It was sad that Barley was no longer there but good to see that Peaches was still around. A free range life is always with it’s risks but I feel leghorns need a free range life and I would never consider having them again in my contained set up.
They are zippy birds and being contained made them bullying and caused them to pluck the other flock members. I know rehoming them was the right thing to do because they were in a more suitable environment for them and my flock has flourished without the bullying.
Integrations have been so much easier since Peaches and Barley left the flock and I now have a happy flock. I was pleased to see Peaches again.