We are hearing more and more how important it is to consider our planet and act responsibly, and this has been highlighted by the recent 'State of Nature Report' with worrying facts about how nature is faring, with over 40 per cent of the UK’s wildlife species having declined since 1970.
We may not all agree, wish to, or be able to take part in the civil disobedience protests that are currently being held, but there are so many simple things we can do to help, including using our gardens as productively and naturally as possible; if we all kept a few hens for eggs and planted a few wild flowers it would make a world of difference to reduce mass food production, chemical use and provide habitats for our insects. So please help us to spread the word about how important and enjoyable 'back garden farming' is by sharing your pictures and experiences on our facebook page.
With the recent wet weather, it is a great time to plan any improvements and changes to your garden, and we are of course always happy to help where we can, giving advise on chicken pens and apiary plans, and there is also so much advice around for creating a wildlife friendly garden, such as this simple list on the soil association site: Bee friendly flowers and herbs. Traditional crafts and skills also play an important part in reducing the plastic and 'throw-away' items that have become so readily available, and we are working with local craftspeople to offer new courses for 2020 from handmade cosmetics to cider making and traditional willow egg baskets.... so watch this space for more details.
The wet weather also means it's time to top up the woodchip in your chicken pen and footpaths. Our woodchips are from a local sustainable source, kiln dried to ensure they last as long as possible and they don't include bark chips which soak up the wet like a sponge causing the pen to remain damp.
Thinking of adding a few hens to your garden? or wish to brush up on your chicken care knowledge? Why not spend a winters day in our cosy training room talking all things chicken and enjoying a lovely lunch provided by Battle Deli.
RAT FACT: 10 rats produce 146,000 droppings and 54 litres of urine per year!
Rodents in your garden can become a problem at this time of year and a few traps used in conjunction with rat baits and poison can help to keep in control. This is a very strong, reliable rat trap - just simply click the lever down to set.
Keeping the ground of your pen clean and dry plays an important part in maintaining the biosecurity and comfort of your birds. No birds are happy in wet muddy conditions. A simple answer is to provide a thick layer of woodchips across the run. This gives the birds a surface to scratch around in and keeps the floor dry, so making it easier for your access also.
Notes for November...
This month is a quiet month for me, most things are done, although very shortly I shall strap the hives up and put anti-woodpecker chicken wire round them and check all entrances are mouseproof. In spite of the rain we have had it has been fairly mild and the bees very active between showers, bringing in loads of pollen...
We are now happy that our latest flock of little birds are all hens (we also have some cockerels available) and so are now ready to buy. There is a great choice of colours and winter is a great time to start or add to your Bantam flock as these young girls will be settled in their new home and ready to lay lovely little eggs in the spring.
Crowhurst Environment and Climate Groups...
You may notice the new signs, posts and managed verges as you approach our farm. This is the work of local enthusiasts who have recently cleared and scarified the verges to encourage the wildflowers to return. Crowhurst Parish Council this week agreed to declare a 'Climate Emergency' in the village, This follows Rother District Council who did the same in September, Wealden in July, Hastings in February and just recently East Sussex County Council, so lets help them to now put achievable plans in place and work together to become carbon neutral.
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