It wasn't planned but on New Year's Eve we added 3 new hen's to our small hen family.
After the passing of our beloved Barbara, one of our two Red Sex Link hens, poor Margo was left all alone. We were desperately looking to find her some company.
A couple of days before new years eve, we got a phone call saying 3 lovely hens needed re-homing and we'd been picked to re-home them!
Clara, she's the feisty one out of the new hen's, hence why she's in the coop, Bully's time-out.
Margo (Red Sex link) our lovely old hen, doing well after the new hen's arrived even though she's been beaten up. Treated her to some beef stew. As she was being pecked whenever she tried to eat with the others!
Kentucky, such a beautifully coloured lady, the most docile of the few, just try's to get along with everybody.
Madam Talk Talk, The top of the pecking order, even though Clara seems to do most of the pecking, she does Madam Talk Talk's dirty work, whatever Madam Talk Talk "Says" goes. She's the first to lay the eggs in the morning, and NO ONE else is allowed to use the nesting box until she is done. Knows that I am the feeder, boss and is afraid of me, unlike all the other hens. Funny considering she's the head out of the hens, yet she seems to be the one most frightened of humans?
It's only been a few days, yet they've all shown different personality traits. They love the new garden as there is loads of places to explore, hide and venture. Poor Margo has taken to escaping the Garden to get away from Madam Talk Talk and Clara. So we've been finding her outside the front of the house, she always comes back when called, so today when she didn't I was very worried! Amazingly though, when I went to put everyone to bed, there she was in the coop (even though I had checked earlier) all snuggled up next to Kentucky. Still have no clue as to where she went?
Our new coop, in our new house, for the new year.
As the girls get the rest of the garden during the day, the run didn't need to be that big, the coop is perfect size for them to snuggle up in and keep warm as it's cold here in Scotland. Our garden is a little need of some maintenance but it leaves a lot to explore for the chickens. The stone area that the coop is on was full of weeds when we first moved in, just shows how hens are fantastic gardeners! I didn't have to pull any weeds! So thankful considering I have bad back problems!
Kentucky has to be my favourite colouring of our four hens,she has a mix of red, gold, green, blue, black, and white in her feathers! She sure does stand pretty too! Her coat has a lot of personality, which is a good thing, as it makes up for her quiet and keep to one self nature. She stay's close to Madam Talk Talk as she knows she'll be protected but never likes to cause trouble.
Margo, oh my lovely Margo. We named her after Margo Ledbetter from The Good Life, and her Sister was Barbara Good.who sadly passed away last year. When Babs was alive, Margo was a bit of a bully, she was constantly pecking at Barbara whenever food was involved. But saying that, she jumped on my shoulder every morning whenever I opened the coop and sat there while I walked around the garden like a parot. She would fall asleep on my lap along with Barbara. And since Babs passed. She comes whenever called, I've never met a more social chicken in my life. Our 1 and half year old son is her best friend. She follows him around the garden, and I'm not sure how but they even sometime's seem to have conversations with one another. My only worry is that she will come up to ANYONE who comes in the garden to say hello and will let them pet her.
Clara, I always want to say Clara Oswald from Doctor Who, but she's not, the new birds all came with their names. And I was told that no, her name has nothing to do with Clara Oswald from Doctor Who... which I am not surprised by as I think this chicken is older than the doctor who character Clara. Clara is a feisty little thing, I wouldn't want to come up against her in a fight if I was a chicken, she will kill is she wants to. She also has no fear of going off by herself and coming up against predators. She chased a huge cat out of our garden the other day. Doesn't seem too surprising with a chicken but she attacked the cat first, so it's not like the cat went for her and then she defended herself, no, she saw the cat and thought, hell yeah, I'll eat that! She also has chased our Margo out of the garden on more than one occasion along with drawing blood. Hence why she's locked in the coop by herself. Bully's Time- Out!
Madam Talk Talk, where do I start? Biggest of the Three new hens, well, biggest of all four hens really. Top of the pecking order. She can be a bit of a bully but only if she can't get Clara to do it for her. She'll start to get other's to finish. Just like her name suggests she's very talkative! And has no boundaries of what's her's and what's not, like the first two photos of her where she's running around in the neighbours garden! But what entertains me the most is, for a chicken that is such a bully and so confident, she is petrified of humans! First to run away from people. I don't know whether it's smart or not? She'll come in the house though if the chance arises, but she'll try and hide from you, while the others are happy to eat from your hand. She's also first to have any food put out (permitting it's not from my hand obviously) and all the other girls know that they aren't allowed to have any until Madam Talk Talk has had some first. Such a big hen, and quite fast for someone who weighs a ton! She weighs more than she looks!
With all said, the new girls are still laying eggs this Winter. Something we're not used to as most of the breeds of chickens we've ever had usually stop laying around Halloween time - Valentine's Day. Which we happily except as they've always supplied us with lovely eggs from spring to early Autumn. So it's amazing to have so many eggs this late in the year as it being quite cold!
We're enjoying our new additions even though poor Margo is taking it a little hard. But she's slowly getting there. And hopefully all will settle down soon.