Not sure where in Australia you are Fizzybelle .... but presume it might be somewhere kinda south ?
Very cold this morning, but warmed during the day to what was like early summer, here in Upwey, Victoria. Turned out to be a glorious autumn day. We had a sticky humid summer, with a couple of small heatwaves. The girls and my dog Miss Ruby, were most uncomfortable on those high humidity days, here . ( so was I !! ).
Have often thought that hens do it very hard ... all year round. They give birth 6 days out of 7 to an egg that is umpteen sizes larger than their vent, with lots of pushing and purring during laying time - and for the rest of the year when not laying, are losing condition because of moult - then going through growing those prickly pin feathers, which hurt them when settling or sitting ( and us if we are not careful ) when having to handle them. I try not to ever touch them when they are in 'pin feather mode' .... if I have to, I wrap them in a towel to keep their feathering evenly spread ( as best as possible ) and am very gentle in handling them.
Poor wee souls - they go through so much.
If your hens are still laying, they are probably not quite near a moult yet --- might happen as the weather gets colder ( which I think as a hooman, is a natures' boo-boo - as they need their warm feathers during colder days - but don't get to have them, often enough ). Perhaps that is what makes them so hardy ( when healthy ). ??
I'm in Brissy. I let the girls out at six am, I was just in a shirt and shorts which until now had been sufficient, but the sudden arrival of Autumn coupled with the rain today made for a super cold morning.
The girls do go through so much. When Annabelle or Ada are on the nest, and I hear them call out I reply to them with words of encouragement, and thank them for the eggs when I collect them. A plate of crickets afterwards though helps them forget their troubles (if they had any, they're pretty resilient) ;)
I agree with you too about the fuss over Araucana/Amerucana's. I didn't realize for a while there were different standards for Araucana's, after wading through so much material on how true Aracuana's are supposed to be rumpless and tufted (the tuft gene being another issue entirely too). Not sure how my little Mabel will measure up to the Aussie standard, but she should be a purebred at least. I'm just amazed at how friendly she is, after again, reading about how skittish they're supposed to be. She's friendly, healthy and happy, that's my ideal. The eventual blue eggs will be a cool bonus to that. Any pics of your Mindy? she sounds amazing
Here's a snuggly Mabel during cuddle time
Edited by Fizzybelle - 4/15/16 at 8:21am