Frida Kahol chicks

Well hello so much has been happening down here on my little acre in the Huon Valley of Tasmania. Finally more sunshine, and heat. So my tomatoes are ripening and developing Yeah. Pumpkins and zucchinis are doing well for me. However the most exciting news is Frida Kahol’s chicks have arrived!

I just happened to hear Frida making the sweetest noises as I was walking to release the other hens. So I went in to see her and found the first chick. It was so wonderful. One other egg was pippin.

So next morning there were 5 chicks! Yeah. 3 yellow chicks and two darkish.

The weather forecast was for high temperatures the following day. 36dC/96.8dF. I went out in the morning and it was so hot. I checked the chicks and Frida Kahol. The chicks were standing outside and Frida Kahol was panting. I made the decision to move them all inside. As it was only 9am and it was already 26dC/79dF. The following three days were to be hotter. It ended up at 38dC/100dF and did not drop down below 23dC/73dF overnight which is very rare here.

So nine chicks. Bringing my flock numbers up to 15.. argh. I wait to discover the genders of them. I imagine if I have quiet a few females I will potentially sell them when they are point of lay which will cover the cost of raising them. My hope is there are very few roosters. Only time will tell. I am so glad that I did cull them as she would have hatched 18 chicks out of 20 eggs.

Above the chicks and Frida have been in side for four days now. I have to admit that I have to still fix the small coop for them all. I only need some nails. As I also need to fix the run as one of my neighbours said she almost ran over one of them. Not that it was an issue for them to have them over there. I just personally would prefer to have them confined a bit more and only let out for shorter periods during the cooler months. They are so delightful to listen to. I love listening to Frida just talking to them gently and teaching them.
In the last photo above note where the food container is. Inside the nesting box. I set it outside in away from the entrance into the nesting box. Why would Frida be moving it into the nesting box.

Busby was so unsettled mid morning he kept heading up to the front door and back to me. I opened the door so he could go out, but he did not. I returned to the seat where I was working and he again came pacing back and forwards. I became annoyed as I was trying to concentrate and he was just distracting me The door was open and he could go out.
A bit later I went to the loo, and as I approached (Busby was right by me) the door to the bathroom I heard distressed chirps and calls coming from inside. On opening the door I noticed one of the chicks had got through the pen rails so Frida was distressed the chick was distressed. I popped the chick back in and all was quiet. When I came out and sat down. Busby laid down and settled. Turns out he was trying to get me to go and see what was happening.

I took three of the chicks to visit a couple of my neighbours with young girls. The girls loved cuddling the chicks. The chicks were so sweet and settled with them. Frida is an amazing Mamma. She understandably does not want her babies taken or her removed from them. I decided before returning the chicks to Mamma I would introduce them to Busby. Miss Treacle was not interested.

Busby was so incredible in trying to get my attention earlier, I decided that he should meet the chicks. He did push his nose in a bit hard at first, so I gently lifted each chick up to his nose so he could sniff their bottoms. This worked well and he was so very gentle with them. The chicks did not seem perturbed by his big nose sniffing them. He is so good around the babies. He is improving around the big hens and Roopert too.

So life here at Echidna Home is full.

blessing to You, Tazzie.

G’day!

As an Australian I have never ever said G’day mate in my general life. Perhaps for a tourist or mucking about. G’day a form of hello in vernacular Australia.
G’day, good day! G’day, gardening day…so as an Australian living in Tasmania in the southern most council region of Australia. I feel it fits my post today.
A lot has been happening about my little acre. Last summer I was getting frustrated with blackberries wildly growing along one of my boundary fence lines.
My plum trees seen in foreground of first photo below were becoming surrounded by shade and the black berries were heading towards them. A wonderful neighbour and his business partner gave me a quote which seemed huge originally and I needed to think about it. I ended up thinking about how my hazel nuts were impacted last summer too. It was a necessity for harvesting and survival of them. So I agreed. I am so incredibly happy with the result. Light streaming in, and whilst the plum trees are not going to give me plums this year I have hopes for next year. The hazelnuts are incredibly happy! Growing everyday.

The last two photgraphs from my vegetable garden shows the increasre in light and water that can be seen now. It may be an issue that wind will become a big issue now that the blackberries have gone. It will be interesting to see. For hazelnuts to pollinate it is done by the wind so for my trees this will enhance pollination.

The vegetable garden is looking different this year I have put in two new beds. Corrugated iron. I have been making soil for them over Autumn and winter. I have to plant a lot of vegetable seedlings this weekend. Tomatoes, chilies, capsicums(sweet peppers), zucchini, eggplant(aubergine), beans, pumpkins and a heap of others I can not recall at present ..oh cucumbers. My hope is that I will reap more than I did last year. lol. First row of photographs below.

Photos second row above are broad beans that are producing huge amounts and are delicous. The wind has been playing havoc with them as we have had very unusual spring wind coming from a southerly direction..I had not set the beans up for that direction. The last photo is of some of my garlic. I have not planted enough of them I realise, there is always next year. I am sure there will be a lot of local garlic available. In the background of the last photo is one of several foxgloves that self seed each year. This one in the last photo stands over 180cm/6ft.

The marigolds have flowered all year which has been terrific. The fruit trees are fruiting up beautiful peach, cherries sweet and morello, (my newly planted in a pot this winter) plums, apples. The jostaberries, red currants are loaded. Blue currants in the pots loaded, not as many on the two I planted into the ground.

I thought the double grafted (two variety) apple I had planted and am trying to espalier has one side that is loaded with leaves and a few apples. I thought that the other side had died. I was surprised and very happy to see leaves coming out this week. Other apples are doing well.

A busy weekend of planting seedlings and making structures to ensure things will have supports as required.

I am so hopeful for a good year of growing home grown vegetables, fruit and hazel nuts. I have been picking some asparagus, and lettuce, green onions, miners lettuce, I have been able to pick a couple of small cauliflowers. It is a learning curve always.

The wood chips I have been using in the vegetable garden are certainly holding moisture. Which is fantastic for summer. We have just had a 32dC/90dF already this week yet ten days ago the fire was lit. This is part of the reason I have yet to plant seedlings out. Old timers always say do not put tomatoes out until after show day, which is normally about the 17th November. A bit early but they need to go in.

Happy weekend everyone.

blessings to You,

Tazzie

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