Saturday, 25 September 2010

My worst day as a smallholder yet.

I know I know I promised wonderful things and I haven't delivered. I fully intended to blog today, to talk about the hens and the new additions, baby stuff and pictures of pretty views and beach's. And to say thank you for the comments and messages about the baby (thank you x)
Butbloodshed put the stoppers on that.

Last night a mink got into my big main hen house, My hubby went over to let them out this morning, so thankfully I didn't have to deal with the carnage in the house ( he said it was like something from a tarentino film). Somehow it had squeezed in through a gap between the door and after its killing spree got it self caught in the rat trap. When hubby came and woke me to tell me what had happened he couldn't tell me exactly how many hens had been killed or who they were as there was blood and feathers and bits lying everywhere. But he had a rough idea who was missing when he let them all out into the paddock.

He went back over to clear up the mess and deal with the mink (that he described as the most evilest looking creature he'd ever seen thrashing about in the cage) giving it the full blast of a 12 bore.

I went over there expecting the worse as hubs bless em can only recognise a few by name but they few he'd told me that were missing were the ones I was dreading. And sure enough that F-ing mink took most of my favourite girls and one of my boys.

Its so quite and empty over there, Its missing a funny sounding crow, a couple of banshee like screech's.
If you've read my posts about my hens who'll recognise a few names :

Holly my gorgeous silkie cockerel, who I've nursed through sour crop, mycoplasmia, injured leg and wings, he was a little fighter he always pulled through and came back stronger, and he always pulled this funny face when he crowed bending his neck at an almost 90degree angle.
2 young sweet bluebell pullets who had just started laying on this week,
Boo my beautiful bossy buff sussex who was always the first to see me when I enter the field and would shout to all the others and run towards me flapping her wings trying to be the first to get at what ever food I was bringing,
Honey an ex batt who would never lay in the nest box in her house but always find a way to get into the other paddock and use the bantams hen house.
Wonky, my lovely sweet wonky with her lopsided wing and a lopsided leg who was the most friendly hen I've ever had she was also the most greedy, she would also wobble about chattering to self in her own little strange world and try and jump up on to my knee whenever I sat down.

But whats feels the hardest is that it took 2 of my original ever girls Tallulah who was beautiful and sweet and always looked after any new hens that got put in with them. When I put Boo in with them all the others really picked on her and wouldn't let her perch but tallulah would snuggle up next to her. She loved being picked up and cuddled. And margo my squawky glamourous boss hen, she has laid an egg everyday except 8, since I got her she was grumpy, stroppy and loud, but I loved her.

It really strange atmosphere over there even the other group in the other hen house are acting quietly. I've checked over the remaining girls and they all seem fine not bites and already I can see new groups and friendships forming. Ben the cockerel is very quiet, he has bite marks and bald patches on his legs where I'd like to think he gave the mink a good kicking trying to save his girls, margo and boo were his main girls, everynight he'd perch with them too either side of him. And holly was his little sparring partner, When I moved all the flock about holly and his girl isabel were left without a run and a home so I put my sweet little chap and isabel in with ben knowing I was taking a gamble introducing two dominant cockerels together, straightaway holly went for ben (even though holly was 3 times smaller than ben)ben gave as good as he got and holly ended up on his back and ben just muttered at him and walked away to dust bathe, since then they've got on fine like to old geezers sat in a pub drinking ale together and avoiding the wives.

I have a lot of hens there and I'm lucky it only got 8, but it hurts that it took them. There are some new additions there, still nameless, a few exbatts, some young lightsussex Hens that I would have been sad to lose but even though I've had them for a few months I didn't have a bond with them like Boo and wonky and tallulah. I know if you have animals you shouldn't care more for some than others, but its inevitable you'll build a relationship with some. I know to some people they are just chickens, just livestock, things we use to get eggs and chicken nuggets and there are far worse things happening in the world, but as sad as it may sound to some people they were like my little friends and I miss them already, its so heartbreaking that some evil vermin just broke in there and destroyed them.
I don't even want to go over there, I just feel so sad. There is a saucepan full of cooked up veg peelings, potatoes and pasta I made up last night for their lunch today, I added extra potatoes because wonky being wonky and slower than the others always misses out on potatoes bless her little heart and right now I can face not seeing her face waiting and calling to me.

If I wasn't preggers right now I think I'd get drunk.

jess x

P.S I got ill for a few days a couple of weeks ago and didn't get out to feed sidney always missing him and seeing him swimming far down the river. So he decided I'd stopped loving him and has gone (I hope he's found some friends) but I did manage to remove the string from his leg.

P.P.S on a happy note the baby seems to be doing really well and regularly dances about in my tummy and gives me the odd roundhouse kick, I have high hopes of a riverdancing kung fu master.

P.P.P.S I will return with a new look blog and happier regular posts soon..............promise.


IsobelleGoLightly said...

I'm so very sorry to hear of the loss of your wonderful chickens. We do our best to keep our chicken friends safe but the predators are determined. I've heard that the mink and weasel are the worst, with raccoons and o'possums doing a fair bit of carnage just for the fun of it. So very sorry.

Fondant Kiss said...

oh you poor thing, I am so sad for you. Hope you feel happier soon.
Deb x

Magic Cochin said...

Horrendous! And so sad for you.

But I'm so pleased the baby seems happy.

Take care

John Gray said...

oh I am so sorry.....
we have all been in this awful place and it is a bastard!

at least the mink is caught and will not return....
big hugs!

Annemarie said...

So very sorry to read of your loss, they all become part of the family and an event like this breaks our hearts. Two of my beautiful girls were also murdered by fox in my suburban backyard. Who would have expected it. I had a memorial for them and felt better for it. We will never forget them, our little two legged fluffy bums are precious.

Keep yourself and the little one well while you grieve.

Best wishes.....

John Gray said...

any sigh of that little basterd returning/////???

could you do me a favour jess?
could you visit my sister's blog and say something supportive?
she had designed it to support our brother!
thank you hon!

ps hows the morning sickness?

John Gray said...

thanks for the quail info!!!!!
nofighting as yet...perhaps they are all female!

as for little JAMES

John Gray said...

lovely to hear your good news
xxxxxx congratulations


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