Saturday, 24 August 2013


I have spent the last two days observing the hens, trying to work out differences in both their behaviour and appearance, so I can tell them apart.  It is important that I do this, as they need to be named.  About six months before I left Perth, I promised my Perth besties Angie, Anne, Leanne and Wilma that I would name our chooks after them.  I have now got the hens sorted and thus the naming has occurred.  Allow me to introduce you to, in alphabetical order,.....

Angie is the friendliest bird, she is always the first to come to me and spends most of her time around my feet.  She is also the most talkative, always chattering away quietly.  Her distinctive trademark is her floppy comb that jauntily tips over her left eye like a cool coiffure.  Angie also has the most beautiful plumage on her neck, she has lots of bright white stripes that cascade down her neck which splay out around her head like an Elizabethan collar.  I get to stroke Angie's back quite regularly, and she doesn't mind as long as I move slowly and carefully.  I've managed one cuddle with her too.

Anne is the largest hen, and the lightest in colour.  She has beautiful scalloped feathers and the base of her neck is ringed with what I would call snowflake feathers, they are edged in white in a sort of crystalline pattern.  Anne has the most magnificent tail, by far the best tail, it is full and fluffy and Anne - well, basically what I think I am saying is Anne, you have the best bum.  :-)    Anne is a clever hen, she is ever so quick with grabbing a yummy snack.  And she was cleverly following Steve around yesterday, we couldn't work out why at first, but she was actually watching what his feet stirred up in the grass, and was catching any tiny hapless insect that moved.  Anne is fairly docile and will consent to being stroked.  I managed to pick her up this afternoon and put her on my lap, where she stayed for a minute or two.

Leanne is a cool dude, she just moseys around doing her thing, close by but not too close.  Leanne has the most magnificent set of bright ginger feathers around the base of her neck, they look superb in the sunshine.  She also has a few white stripes down her neck.  Leanne has the smallest comb and oddly, has very long claws on one foot.  Leanne might need a manicure!  Leanne had a lovely time today standing at the fence watching Steve weeding the vegie patch.  She was excited about this because every time Steve found a bug he threw it through the fence, and because Leanne was being very alert to this, she got to gobble up most of them.

Wilma is the smallest hen, and the darkest.  She has the biggest and reddest comb of them all, but also has the most embarrassingly small and spindly tail.  Wilma is an independent miss and a touch highly strung, no cuddles for Wilma yet, she would squark and run a mile if I tried.  Wilma is a cheeky girl, and a bit naughty - she is the one who wouldn't go to bed the first night and had to be chased around the yard.  Wilma struts, she has the most beautiful streamlined stance, with her chest puffed out, head up proudly, stumpy tail as high as she can lift it, and, struts.
 Here we have Anne on the left, Angie in the middle and Wilma on the left
 Here is Anne on the left and Angie on the right
 Clockwise from the left: Anne (note the marvelous tail), Leanne checking for missed bugs on the ground, Angie (watching Steve in the vegie patch) and Wilma strutting at the front
 Four bums
 Leanne with her beautiful ginger neck on the left, Wilma with that little tail in the middle, and Angie with that floppy comb on the right.
 Leanne on the left and Wilma on the right, waiting for grubs from Steve

We spent this morning putting a protective lid over their yard.
8 metres by 4 metres of bird netting, stretched over a framework of thick, black poly pipe and attached to the top of the fence all the way round.
Thank goodness we did  quickly as yesterday I spotted the biggest fricken wedgetail eagle I have ever seen, flying leisurely past.  And today, not long after the netting was finished, we watched a big kite circling round and round checking it all out.  A few crows hopefully flew closer then realised there was no chance of getting in.  Sucked in big birds, go and find something else to feast on!

And on a final note, we have had seven eggs!  Already!  Three today and two the previous two days.  I can't say who is laying them at this point as they are usually just waiting in the nests when we unlock the door in the morning, but Angie, I can tell you that you laid a 62 gram egg this afternoon, while we were working on the bird netting.  Well done!  One of you excelled yourself yesterday and layed a 71 gram egg, the biggest yet.  I wonder who it was?


  1. Very glad a wedge tailed eagle didn't whisk me away on day 1. Big bum? Must work on that! Anne (but you knew that)!

    1. Now Anne, did I say big bum? No, I said best bum! It is a nice shape and you fluff your feathers out to show it off :-)