Thursday, 22 December 2016
Preparing for the storm....
I got all my supplies for Christmas in yesterday, so today I've been working as well as making sure all hatches are battened. We've already had hail showers, with thunder and lightning. I've been racing to unplug the internet modem at every rumble!
The skies have been quite dramatic today but it has barely got light. These photos were taken from an upstairs window at 2.30 this afternoon.
Though things were a bit brighter at 10am this morning.
The hens are hopefully comfortably settled in their hen house. They have had to be kept shut indoors in most of the UK since 6th December by order of DEFRA as a prevention measure due to fears of transmission of avian flu from migrating birds to domestic poultry. Sadly the two cockerels had to be "despatched" as they would have fought in the hen house, and the girls are more settled without a cockerel around.
They have lots of straw, as well as roosts. The hen house is a reasonable size with natural light (I'm about a 3rd of the way down it taking this photo). They are being fed more often and I'm giving them lots of veggies and things for them to rootle about with, as well as extra grit and shells and food scattered among the straw to stop them getting bored!
The hens only get up once it is proper daylight and go to bed as soon as the light level drops, so even on good days at this time of year they would only be out for a few short hours. In this weather they are better shut in anyway to prevent them being blown away! They have a small run cobbled together outside "for the duration", but it's a bit "Heath Robinson" so in bad weather they get shut in for safety.
I've left Charlie, the barn cat, with extra supplies of food. He'll just hunker down among the hay and straw. Plenty of mice for him to catch if he feels like it!
As for Princess Button, she's nice and snug and warm, thank you very much. She's got plenty of food and is quite happy indoors. Indeed we will have arguments when she needs to go out "to do the necessary". Sigh.... she refuses to use a litter tray so out she has to go!
There will be no more beach walks for a few days yet!
Mmmm think I might join Princess Button on that fleecy blankie!