Wednesday 6 June 2012

Bunnies and Eggs

In the middle of last week, one of the "Lovely Girls" obliged us with a first egg. Being young birds and new to the egg laying game, the Girls are doing what you'd expect, which is laying infrequently (maybe every other day or every 3rd day), laying rather small eggs (they are about "medium" in terms of commercial shop-bought egg sizes) and not laying them in Dad's nice, warm, dry, cosy, nest boxes. By now, the 6th of June, we have, we think, 3 birds 'on line', so that we have now had a 3-egg day, with two laid in one of the feed mangers (where there is, to be fair, some hay so that it looks a bit like a nest box) but at least one of the numpties insists on dropping her precious cargo in a muddy puddle or the wet grass out in the run in the pouring rain.

We have been told that you can train hens to lay in the right place by keeping them indoors till lunchtime and by leaving an old golf ball in each nest box to give them the idea, but we have also been told that they eventually sort themselves out. Because the puddle-nester lays rather late in the afternoon, we cannot really leave them indoors till 4pm, so we are going with the 'sort themselves out' option but we may invest in some golf balls. Meanwhile, Mum and Dad assure me that the eggs are delicious and fresh with lovely firm whites and deep yellow yolks.
It is hard for 2 people to eat 5 eggs a day, so we will almost certainly be trying to give them away to visitors, people we visit, passing neighbours and any old waif and stray we can persuade to take them!
 Did I mention that we had inherited a couple of female bunnies? These guys are a grey and white sticky-up eared lady known as Ginny and a black and white lop eared dame called Padfoot. Formerly owned by J-M Silverwood, they have been re-homed to us to make space for Lily's pups and, if the truth were known, because J-M had kinda run out of steam on the "I will clean them out, feed them, water them" thing as do many pre-teenagers. Also, Padfoot had had an unfortunate scrape at the hands of boy-dog Maxwell when he escaped the decking where he was meant to be stretching his legs and thought he'd broaden his horizons into the dog-run outside the decking balustrade.  Anyway, the thoughts of all are that it will do Ginny and Padfoot the power of good to come and live here where they can run on real grass and keep the lawn short. Dad has built them a move-able run 16 feet square, which Mum and Dad can drag to a new site every now and then to keep the lawn-mowing thing active.
I love it, of course as they are a whole new potential prey animal to play with but Mrs S keeps coming up on Facebook with threatening comments like "I'm watching you, Deefer!" and "Grrrrrrrrr". Honestly, if they'd only let me play with one. I'd not break it! I am having hours of fun running round the outside of the run trying to get at them, and sitting watching them romp in the sun, waiting for one to accidentally leap the 4 foot fence.

A girl can dream.

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