Three so far and it’s only June.
It has been a peculiar year for me and we are only coming to the end of June. Discounting the chicks that don’t make it from the nestbox. It has been a funny year for l have lost 3 youngsters that have made it to youngsters flight. If they make to the perch l do not normally lose any birds but this year has been different.
First a light green cinnamon hen that was very promising was lost a few months ago. It appeared she had broken her neck. The latest loss was my number 1 of 2017 a albino hen. She had just come through a good moult and was starting to look better. Within two days the bird was dead despite giving her a couple good feeds with the crop needle. She was very weak so it was not surprising. I blame myself for not spotting the bird was going downhill. It did not help l had to work Saturday otherwise the outcome may have been different.
The active pairs are still producing and at present l have 7 chicks in two boxes with another 5 full eggs still to hatch. A maiden hen has 4 full eggs at the moment and she may well have 6 out of 7 full eggs.
Rolled Oat Bedding
The birds appear to be no different to us humans some hens keep there nestboxes really clean while other are really messy and require regular bedding changes, l am trying rolled oats as bedding at the moment. Someone was asking on one of the forums if any one had used rolled oats in there nestboxes. As l can buy rolled oats at a much reduce price l thought l would give it ago. It works really well and it is something l will persist with.
The thinking is that the chicks can eat the oat bedding as a replacement for putting sprigs of millet in the boxes. I still add a little food grade diatomaceous earth to the oats as a preventive to deal with any mites.