Thursday, March 25, 2010

If you want something done, call the eggsperts!

Some friends of ours went into the chicken buying business on the same day as we purchased The Three Degrees Mk II. They bought two, a run-of-the-mill brown one like ours called Ruby, and a very good looking French Black Copper Marans (see photo) that they call Gilda., She has beautiful plumage, although not like a Norwegian Blue! Neither their birds nor ours are layers yet, but we are hoping for the first egg any day now as it will be four weeks next Monday when we got them.

Our friends told us that the brown hen has been flying up and sitting on the fence and they have been concerned that she might eggscape.
We said not to worry, they just had to trim the flight feathers so the hen couldn’t actually get off the ground to any real height. Probably about as far as they could jump, although to be honest I have never ever seen a hen trying to jump. Perhaps we could train them and have a hen jumping competition. Hmmm. O2 Arena for the main event? Possible income generation scheme.

Anyway they asked if we could pop over and help them with the bird trimming (no not trimming as in a nice roast chicken with all the trimmings) as they hadn’t any eggsperience of it. To set the record straight, we have only trimmed flight feathers twice. It worked OK, we didn’t hurt them, at least not physically, I don’t know about mentally, and the birds stopped eggscaping so we guessed we did the right thing. We liked our friends’ blind faith. What’s that saying, “The one-eyed man is king in the land of the blind.” A bit like that really.

So we went round last Tuesday armed with our trimming machine – an old pair of kitchen scissors. We sat outside and had a great natter and enjoyed a lovely coffee and some cake (it’s alright, it was a diabetic cake, honest. I know for sure because one of our friends is diabetic too!!) These friends are the ones who took one of the kittens the community cats had last year. A little silver queen. She has grown into a very pretty cat and looks as though she rules the roost over the other three that they have.
Then we were down to action.

I did the showing of getting the wing stretched out whilst they held the first hen and La D did the snipping. Then they did the second one as we watched on shouting encouragement. The birds didn’t bat an eyelid. Once they were put back onto the ground, they just went on with their lovely gentle clucking and pecking about our feet as though we weren’t even there.

A very pleasant Tuesday morning.

On the way home, La D suggested that I could market myself as a “pollo parrucchiere” – chicken hairdresser – to royalty as I look after our chickens and La D, by way of her title, is nobility. I had to point out to La D that her title is one that she conferred upon herself and that in fact she is not a real Duchessa. “Oh stop splitting hairs L’uomo chi fa”

Lordy, lordy.

Ciao, mantenere la fede

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