Bald chickens?

There's been a lot of feather moulting going on in the coop. Puzzled me a bit since I'm sure the chickens have moulted once already this year, at the beginning, right in the middle of the coldest weather. Fortunately the (un)feathered fiends appear to shed coyly and aren't as bad as this poor bird. Think mine are doing their own version of the dance of the seven feathers.
Still not managed to solve the mystery of which chicken isn't laying. Most days I get three eggs from four birds and that's been the case for months. Tried hanging around to spot the culprit but that upsets their routine and I might only get one egg as a result. Thought about placing a thread over their vents, a dab of poster paint... anything to indicate the errant gallus domesticus. All to no avail. Guess I'll have to lump it, but if anyone has any bright suggestions please add a comment.
Must do a note to my daughters... there's a danger they'll go up to the allotment and think they're on the wrong plot, it's looking sooooooooo tidy. The influence of a good woman in the form of my wife Linda, who's started to visit the allotment with me and share the tasks. Now the shed is pristine with all the onions hung up, the mess out the front is cleared and I've finished all the footings around the shed to keep Mr Rat away. Images of this miracle shown below. Linda even smiled kindly on the chickens on Monday as the evening drew ever darker... or maybe it was my imagination!
Nearly got myself into trouble at the Flaming Wok on Saturday. As they shouted out '76' for a customer to collect I got an uncontrollable urge to sing '... trombones led the big parade, with 110 cornets close at hand...' etc. etc. Fortunately my order followed immediately after to save me from embarrassment and possible arrest and sectioning under the Mental Health Act.
Sad weekend though... the last opening of Holt Island, one of our favourite haunts. We've seen all kinds of birds there this year as well as a couple of sightings of the muntjac deer. And on our last visit on Sunday as a goodbye gesture the island gave us a sighting of one of its shyer residents... as we walked over the footbridge to get on the island a kingfisher flashed above the water like a jewel.
Sat in our favourite seat in the warm sun overlooking the water meadow, where I almost fell asleep. Then walked around to the Norris Museum to sit in the garden there in the sun, where I almost fell asleep. You can see there's a common thread in this walk!
Also discovered another couple of places in our quest to list the best places for coffee around St Ives. Favourites up to now are The Dolphin Hotel, where the best and cheapest coffee is served in lovely surroundings both inside and out, and The Axe and Compass in Hemingford Abbots, which serves the most chocolatey tasting accompaniment I know in ancient surroundings. Step forward Slepe Hall Hotel, where last weekend we sat on the terrace drinking great coffee from a pot (four cups) and eating the accompanying mint biscuits, all for £3. What a bargain! Then yesterday we walked to Oldhurst and visited Johnsons Farm for great coffee and a rhubarb and ginger crumble cake. The farm has exotic animals to view and a barn for children to play on toy tractors, but the crocodiles that are farmed are still kept under wraps. To read more on this topic click here.
Things to look forward to in the next week... getting the Fiat Panther Monday (now unfortunately renamed Fiat Pansy by daughter Beth), and Saturday we're having a family get together in our back garden, with a chance to meet Penny (John's girlfriend) for the first time. She's bringing her two sons to join the massed ranks of grandchildren that'll be trying to break the sound barrier. I'm praying it doesn't rain and we all have to pack into the living room. Maybe I should let the neighbours know it would be a good time to have a day away somewhere.

Shed front looking palatial. (Click to enlarge)
Inside all spick and span.
Even at the back the wood stack has been tidied!
Another example of Allotment Heaven with the best sunsets in the world.

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Who says Paige doesn't like being beaten?

1 comment:

  1. It's all looking spick and span. I wish I could say the same about my allotment.


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