Tuesday, August 5, 2008

We are a Grandmother......


Finally, Daphne, my lovely Phoenix bantam, has successfully hatched an egg. Only trouble is it wasn't hers but she doesn't seem to mind.

Meet Denis (or possibly Denise - only time will tell)

Denis/e has a little naked neck so she's clearly not Daphne's own offspring but then the lazy old hens just nudged her out of the way, laid their eggs in her nesting box and she went 'Thanks very much' and tucked them under her. She started off sitting on 4 eggs but she's now up to 10. Unfortunately they were all laid while we were on holiday so we couldn't take them away. The original 10 are now marked so we can take away any others she eggnaps.

Poor girl looks a bit like a hen who's been melted. She's spread out over so many eggs she's practically flat!

What I have discovered though is that I'm more Margot from 'The Good Life' than I am Barbara. I've no idea what to do with our new chick. Any advice gratefully accepted!

11 comments:

Madeira Jon said...

With a bit of luck, the hatchings will be staggered, so Denis(e) will be off on her own when the siblings pop from their shells. Unless you want a big flock of chickies, I could suggest that you take the extra eggs from under Mummy hen and replaced them with round stones. She won't know the difference! It reminds me when the memsahib and I kept hens, we also had one who went broody with her sisters eggs. When they hatched she dutifully took them around our large garden, (the hen that is not memsahib) showing them where the best bugs could be found. Regrettably out of the 8 eggs, 7 turned out to be boys. To our consternation, they also turned out to be sex-mad! Even at 4 weeks old, they saw their foster mum as fair game!
You know,..... you eventually tire of having coq-au-vin every meal!
(i)P.S., We are not resident in France yet, but looking in Limousin, having retired from work in Madeira, and find your blog so refreshing. Thank you for a splendid diary (/i)

(Very) Lost in France said...

Hi Jon and welcome to my blog. Thanks for your very kind comments. My parents have a place in Madeira at the Pestana Palms (I think). They love it there. Guess what, it's now twins! Another egg hatched this afternoon so look out for my next post. Thanks for you suggestions. I'll wait and see if a few more hatch and then I'll probably take the rest away.

I don't know Limousin very well but what I do know is lovely. France is a great place to retire to - not so good for us younger ones - so I'm sure you'll have a lovely time. VLiF

Madeira Jon said...

I always realised the world was smaller than people made out, but not that small. Pestana Palms??? Believe it or not our daughter is in Senior Management with the Pestana Group! Her office is just along the road at Pestana Carlton!

tartetartan said...

Someone once told me that chickens sometimes eat their own eggs - is this true?

Sounds a bit strange to me! Maybe Jon can help?

Congratulations on the chick.

Jaywalker said...

Oh VLiF I am consumed with envy for your chicks. And Daphne sounds like a wonderfully selfless and amazing hen. If possibly a little dim.
You must enter them in my virtual village fĂȘte. They would definitely win soemthing.

Madeira Jon said...

Yes [b] tartetarta,[/b] this is true. When the hens diet is deficient in calcium, e.g. when overlaying, she is often then driven to getting it from the eggshells. Also when eggs are included in their diets, as when boiled and chopped up, they tend to get a "taste" for them.
[b]VLiF[/b] tried to include it in my last thread but obviously couldn't. Our daughter is a Senior Manager for the Pestana Group in Funchal and her office is in Pestana Carlton which is just down the road from Pestana Palms! Small world indeed.
MJ

MarmiteToasty said...

Oh, I LOVE this post :)

Since Cedric our Cockral arrived, Janet and Mable do not lay one egg a day like they use to, we are lucky if we get 2 a week.... and we would LOVE for one to hatch but neither Janet or Mable are interested in sitting......

x

(Very) Lost in France said...

Hi Jon, what a coincidence! I remember sitting on a plane in Abu Dhabi and getting chatting to a man sitting across the aisle. It turned out he had worked with my Dad in Holland when I was just a toddler. He was also working at an oil refinery that Dad had helped to design and had no idea that he was on the design team. Another time, a good friend was climbing Ayers Rock and got chatting to a guy in front. She discovered he was from Tunbrige Wells (where we settled after our globetrotting finished). She said 'I don't suppose you know.....' and guess what? It was my best friend's boyfriend! And then when I went to work in Bahrain, one of the guys in the same company had lived just down the road from us in Iran. It is indeed a small world! VLiF

(Very) Lost in France said...

Jaywalker, she's a great mum. She drew a blank with her first clutch of eggs but was not to be deterred. She used to be beautiful Phoenix bantam but she's decidedly ropey looking now. Hopefully this will satisfy her maternal urges now. Look forward to the virtual village fete! VLiF

(Very) Lost in France said...

Marmy, I've been dying for some eggs to hatch so you could see the chicks. Debs told me how much you love them. See my latest post too. I'll keep my fingers crossed for your girls. Daf is the only one of mine to go broody. Neige, my remaining Maran is too posh for sex! VLiF

(Very) Lost in France said...

TT - I'm very strict about them not having any chicken products in their diet. That's how trouble starts in my opinion. VLiF