Saturday, January 28, 2012

Trials and tribulations of keeping chickens

I have committed mistake no 1. Ok, I hear you say, mistakes where bound to happen. This is the first time I've had chickens to look after. So how bad can it really be you ask?

I almost starved my hens to death!

Tragedy averted now I hope. Its been really wet here for over a week but I have diligently gone down to the bottom of the garden twice a day and fed and watered my three hens.

As instructed when I bought them, I have been giving them layer mash and scratch mix. They didn't seem to like layer mash. I gave them fresh stuff but they didn't eat much. I gave them scratch mix - I tossed it down on the straw in the bottom of their coop and they scratched away merrily.

All good so far.

Today, one week after I brought them home, I cleaned out their straw and replaced it.


We raised the coop off the ground a little so the timber wouldn't rot.  There is heavy mesh on the bottom to fox proof it.

But, the feed had fallen/been pushed through the straw, through the mesh and underneath.


So today I have changed the system. I have put a plastic box lid under the feed tray to catch any stray food. Temporary measure, I'll do something better when I find something that fits well in the coop. I have mixed warm water and milk powder into their mash and they have eaten it all up. And I have given them some spinach leaves from the garden.


What a fright that gave me. So I will be more careful now.

Poor little girls, this is supposed to be a chicken holiday club not a boot camp.

Now I vow to make it the ritz!!


  1. Now those little chickens are going to give you the best eggs ever : )
    Plus you wouldn't hurt a fly so I'm sure your girls know that xx

  2. That was me btw Jodie
    Looking forward to hearing more of your chicken news

  3. Thanks Rach
    Post note - they ate every last morsel of the mash, and most of the spinach. I got one egg this evening, AND its bigger than the others I've had. What's life without a bit of a learning curve!

  4. Oh dear, that gave me a good laugh!

    I thought our dog had got one of my hens the other day(hadn't seen her for a day & a half....I am known to leave them & they let themselves go to bed & I do not close the door at night, they can then catch the early worms!)

    I was walking around tending to horses & children when out of the corner of my eye comes HENNY PENNY WET to the skin, feather's everywhere, mud and making a great cackling sound! I did ask her if she had had a BIG night out.....
    I put them all in their hen house to dry off & have a feed! xoxo Amanda

  5. Hey Mandi
    I haven't been game to let them out yet - I think they'll have to wait until the weekend. My dogs are fascinated but I don't think they'll hurt them. I'll get the hang of it and top panicking one of these days ;)



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