Well, I guess that’s farm life for you!

I was dismayed to discover that I had a rogue visitor in my bantam enclosure during the night.  The poor beheaded body of my little black hen lay at the gate – the classic trade mark of either  the meerkat or the black tipped mongoose who bites birds’ heads off and leaves the rest of the carcass untouched. I wish I could understand why they do this!?

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I have had this visitor before too! Some years ago he got into my pigeon loft and beheaded every last bird grrr – NOT like!!! I will have to do some detective work to see where the thief/murderer got in.

This rooster was definitely agitated this morning and strutting up and down on high alert – What a pity his little crow is so small I would never have heard any raucousness from my home!

My poultry family has grown since I was lucky enough to buy in 3 breeding pairs of Golden Sebrights – I am thrilled with them. Apart from the fact they are already settled in and eating out of my hand, I spotted two little eggs in one of the new nests I made for them! Apparently the hens are not enthusiastic brooders so I will give them a chance but may have to resort to using my next door neighbour’s incubator later since there are already a number of folk who have expressed interest in buying chicks from me – maybe my hobby will one day become a business yet!?!

I am also raising two groups of indigenous fowl which we call “bosveld’ and ‘kaalnek’ chickens. They are really not the prettiest of birds but they are known to be excellent scavengers. My plan is to put them in the cattle ‘kraals’ where we have a summer problem with the fly population zooming in to lay their eggs in the enticing wet dung of the cows we keep there from time to time when we bring them in from the distant fields to check them over, pregnancy test them and secure their ear tags. On the whole our animals live out on the grass pastures rather than close to the farm yard.

My pair of Carolinas and the teeny ring necked Teal are very happy with their new pond. They are both still quite young but I hope to see them laying in the near future.

 

Needless to say I am on high alert for the prowling murderous mongoose and my fences are all being checked and tightened – Unfortunately these scavengers tend to learn bad habits rather too quickly and become unpopular around the farm yard. I am not inclined to shoot at all since I prefer the principle of ‘live and let live’ – but if they keep on killing my innocent pretty hens… they had better watch out for “Annie, get your gun!”

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4 responses to “Well, I guess that’s farm life for you!

  1. That’s a shame. It wouldn’t be so bad, seemingly, if the raider ate his victim. This, though, seems like such a waste. I hope you can secure their pen or the marauder finds other prey far from your lands.

    • It is such a waste and he has been spotted on the prowl on the edge of the farmyard again so I’m a little worried about tonight – We have done thorough fence checks and I even replaced an old fence. The ducks who usually sleep on the edge of their pond have been shooed into a cage for tonight too – #doing my best!

  2. What a shame….have you managed to identify who the attacker is yet? I know that meerkats and mongooses both can reach through the wire mesh and bite off heads…what a beautiful little bird that Golden Sebright is. I hope they will all be safe from the marauder. Have a great weekend xx

    • Hi Colleen, The farmworkers say it was one of the black-tipped mongoose. We have been doing quite a bit of work around the yard so hopefully they have scurried off for a while. All my feathered friends are safe inside their hicks at night and roam free during the day when we are out and about! I am besotted with the Sebrights – and they are so tame they eat out of our hands:) You enjoy your weekend too – hope you have recovered from your busy season recently!

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