|Domino watching over the chicks|
|Tough start to life|
|The first hatchling|
|Now transferred to the brooder|
It was fascinating to watch the entire hatching process in the incubator. We had a couple of late nights! It takes about 21 days for a chick to hatch. After 7 days you candle the egg to make sure there are signs of life. Out of our nine eggs, six developed and five hatched - not a bad rate. On day 21 the chicks start to pip a hole in the shell, but that's so exhausting that they take a long break after the first hole has been made and then later continue work on breaking off the end of the egg to get out. We got five cute fuzzballs, one brown, one yellow, one white and two silver-grey ones. Now it will be quite a wait to find out what sex they are, though the yellow one and one of the silver-greys are much larger and more assertive than the others - so maybe they are cock birds.
In the garden there is now produce, though everything is weeks behind. We have:
|Aguadulce broad beans|
|Tasty rhubarb of unknown variety|
|Kelvedon Wonder peas|
|And the first tomatoes are turning red|
Outside, we haven't had to water anything and everything is very green.
|Freshly mown middle paddock|
There are roses everywhere, and a few other flowers, too, but mainly roses. The previous owner was an afficionado so we have an enormous variety. And I have to say, David Austin roses make a lovely tea.
|One of the posh David Austin roses|
|Another of the posh roses|
|Wild rose in the hege|
|Beautiful catnip flowers|
|The lavender is out|
I've resown several veggies: squashes, beans, sweetcorn and asparagus. It will be interesting to see if the season is long enough for them to ripen (and for the asparagus to do anything at all). In the meantime, the original squashes and courgettes seem to have recovered. Phew!
|First courgette forming|