“People who count their chickens before they are hatched, act very wisely, because chickens run about so absurdly that it is impossible to count them accurately.”
- Oscar Wilde
A couple of weeks ago, one of Solly's hens hatched a clutch of seven chicks, the cutest little things you can imagine! They are free range, for every morning Solly (our mechanic cum handyman), opens their cage and then they've got the run of the smallholding, the mother often leading them into my garden, knowing they'll always be welcomed with a couple of seeds.
I got used to them popping en every morning and soon they would all come running the minute they saw me, knowing it's breakfast time. Then disaster struck. One of Solly's dogs killed the mother hen and for a week or two the babies were totally lost, coming into my garden every morning and staying the whole day until it was time to go home and roost. Teenagers now, all seven have managed to evade the dogs by heading for my garden first thing and staying all day, eating seeds often, scratching around for insects and having sand baths in my flower beds, much to the consternation of Chrissie, my garden engineer, who now spends her days fixing up holes in the flower beds!