Monday, July 9, 2012
Chickens and Ducklings
Maybe it's the novelty, but I am finding ducklings far more endearing than chicks, we ended up with just six ducklings from the incubator as we now know it is not working correctly but the six that we have are lovely, they are far more responsive than chicks. Today they had their first waddle, I gave them a slightly larger drinking bowl, with out the marbles in it, they thought it was wonderful, first dipping their heads under and then plunging straight in. They still have the electric hen in with them so were able to dry off without catching a chill. In a weeks time I have to take them off heat and the week after they should be going outside. This is the last hatch that we will do in the incubator this year so hopefully I can get it serviced and running properly for next season. It will still have it's use during the winter, making yoghurt.
Making our own yoghurt is something we have done for years but since our return to Ireland none of the batches had worked out, I had tried every brand of so called live yoghurt as a starter, and four different brands of milk, so what was going wrong? Well it turns out that milk is being so diluted here it just does not contain sufficient fat or protein, eventually I found a full fat yoghurt recommended by someone on a poultry site, I added a tablespoon of double cream to the milk and hey presto, lovely thick yoghurt again at a fraction of the cost of shop bought.
Our keyhole garden is working out well. everything that I had sown has germinated well and so far the slugs have not discovered it. I think a second one will have to be made.
Our last batch of chicks are now outside and doing well, eight la Bresse four Jersey Giants and two light Sussex. It's amazing how quickly they grow once they are outside.
I have found four beautiful rambling roses in the hedge in our drive way, these are an incredible colour and the perfume is truly amazing, I think it is best described as a damask rose, I will take lots of cuttings in the Autumn, we just could not have too many of these beautiful roses around. Our sweet peas are also doing very well so the house is never short of perfumed flowers.