No Cockerels allowed!
So, what do you need to do to become a member of the exclusive Emerald Garden Ladies Only Club?
The qualifications required for membership to the club are as follows:-
- Ladies only
- Eat up the veggies and grain and turn it into soil improver
- Eat up the bugs and slugs that cause so much damage in the Emerald Garden
- Lay an egg at least every other day.
- And most importantly, be cute!
If you have said yes to all 5 points, then welcome you are free to join the club!
Once in the club you get to enjoy the following perks:-
- Meals served in the morning, with the occasional midday snack, but always a little treat at bedtime.
- A safe and protected club house and play area
- Fresh water served as required
- Soft clean bedding to snuggle in at night, or to sit to lay that all important egg.
- Cuddles if you are that way inclined
- Company of fellow club members, there are no unfamiliar faces in this club.
Meet the members
There are currently six members of the Ladies Only Club.
Florence – Salmon Faverolles
Florence is an absolute sweetheart, she is inquisitive, docile, sociable and very entertaining in her behaviour. You can guarantee that if you are doing something in or near the hen house, she’ll be there at the wire chatting away to you.
The Faverolles (yes, it has an ‘s’ even though she is our only one) are different in that they have five toes instead of the usual four and their feet are feathered.
Buffy the eggs-layer – Buff Sussex
I know, a very corny name. You can blame my husband for that groan you found yourself making.
Buffy is a bit of a loner. She is not as keen to be around us and is often the one who makes being put to bed at night a bit of a Benny Hill moment!
She is quite different from her fellow Sussex Alba. Alba is a Light Sussex and is a bigger built bird.
Alba – Light Sussex
Alba is, along with Florence, our favourite of the bunch. She is very docile and is often under your feet as you try to go about your chores.
Alba is not bothered by the affection I dote on her, she calmly accepts the cuddles and will even let me cradle her on her back like a babe in arms!
Her biggest sin…. she is the broodiest of our flock!
Ruby is a slightly darker red than her sister Scarlet. She is a curious hen, as her picture shows. This shot was captured as she was fascinated by the beep the camera made when the focus locked.
Don’t ask me which one is Scarlet in this shot, the difference in the depth of their feather colour is only slight and in the shade of the passionfruit that grows over the chook run, I can’t see that difference at all.
Both girls are not really what I would call docile, they pretty much mind their own business. They are both pickles to catch too!
Olive – Wyandotte
Olive gets her name not just because she is black, she also has a slightly more compact body than the others, I wouldn’t say round, but that’s the sort of shape.
At first Glance Olive is just a plain black chook, but get her into the sunshine and her beauty becomes apparent. Her feathers shimmer with greens and purples and the markings of the wyandotte are seen almost as shadows in the plume. It’s as if she is oily, hence Olive!
So, why is it a ladies only club?
Most folks here keep a cockerel in their flock. We have never had a male. In England and to some extent where we lived in France, the neighbours were sensitive to the noise the cockerels make at silly-o-clock in the morning. So, for the sake of good neighbourly relationships we stuck to hens.
Despite the freedom to own a cockerel here in the Emerald Garden, we currently can’t see the point.
- The males can be incredibly aggressive and can cause terrible injury to people with the spurs on the back of their legs.
- If you let the hens hatch young, the percentage of male chicks is stupidly high, leaving you to find homes for them or having to cull the poor little chirpers.
For now then, the club will remain…..