- Collect bracken and hang bunches to dry – it is a great source of free bedding for your coop.
- Do not be tempted to overfeed hens with corn, as fat chickens will stop laying.
- Make a health busting treat:
- 1 cup each of rolled oats, wheat and sunflower seeds, plus 1 teaspoon each of brewers yeast, garlic and dried sea weed, combined with cod liver oil.
- Gather stinging nettles (wearing protective gloves) then blanch them for a few minutes and freeze in small batches. Give them to your flock for a dose of vitamin c and iron
- Keep chickens healthy by worming them with a natural product such as verm-x once a month
- Hang bunches of fragrant herbs, including mint, rosemary or lavender, in the coops to mask odours which are especially pungent in the heat
- Juice immune-boosting carrots and place the liquid in a drinking bowl for your flock.
- Power wash your hen-house on the morning of a warm day so it dries out by the evening.
- Gather dock leaves for your birds. They are a free source of greens and packed with vitamins, protein and iron.
- Place a radio in the chicken run if you notice signs of predators in the area – human voices discourage them.
- Pin a white cloth in the coop overnight when red mites are active, and check in the morning to see if there are any on it.
- Place pots of mint around the outside of the run – the scent will deter rats.
- Introduce any new birds into the coop at night when the existing flock is asleep.
Hollywater Hens has extended opening hours this Bank Holiday weekend and the weather is mostly looking dry and sunny 🙂
Saturday 30th April - 10am-4pm
Sunday 1st May - 10am-4pm
Monday 2nd May - 10am-4pm
Come and visit our Hollywater Hens smallholding near Borden on the Hampshire/Surrey border.
Come and see the chickens and all of the other animals we have on the smallholding
And we are now taking bookings for the following dates too:
Sunday 8th May
Sunday 22nd May
Beginners chicken keeping courses take place from 10:00–12:30. The cost of the course is £40 and includes sandwiches (egg – would you believe!), cake and tea/coffee or juice. Please contact us for more details and further information and to book your place.
“Fantastic course at Hollywater hens today. Suzie Baldwin is hugely knowledgeable and a real confidence giver. Can’t wait to get my girls.” – Helen Ellis via our Facebook page
The Hollywater Hens’ Beginners Chicken Course includes:
- Setting up
- Chicken breeds
- Feeding chickens
- Handling chickens
- Common chicken health problems
- How to handle your hens
- Wing clipping
- Questions and answer session with fresh sandwiches, cake and tea or coffee.
“A fantastic few hours learning from the Jedi Chicken Master herself Suzie Baldwin. We decided to take the course before we move to France in April and do this all by ourselves. Suzie couldn’t have been more helpful if she tried!! Fantastic course, great lady, great setup highly recommended to all!!!” – Andy MacPherson via our Facebook page
The beginners chicken keeping course is a great way to gain confidence and knowledge enabling you to provide your hens with a happy healthy lifestyle.
Also they are a great way to meet like minded people.
Old clothes and wellington boots are advisable as this is a fun, hands-on practical course.
Telephone or email for more details and to book your place:
Chicken expert Suzie Baldwin from Hollywater Hens appeared on Channel 5’s The Saturday Show on Easter Saturday 26th March.
Suzie talks with Gabby Roslin and Spandau Ballet’s Tony Hadley about how easy it is to start keeping your own chickens, discusses some breeds and looks at what you need from a chicken coop. They move on to discuss selling eggs from your garden gate and then show some newly hatched day old chicks.
Suzie Baldwin and her family at Hollywater Hens appeared on the front page of the Bordon Herald under the headline “Happy Days at Hollywater Hens” on 15th April 2016.
This was a follow up in the local press to Suzie appearing on Channel 5’s The Saturday Show on Easter Saturday.
“It was great fun” said Suzie, a columnist for Country Living magazine. “I just wish it was me on Tony Hadley’s lap and not the chicken. I was clean for the day and treated like royalty.”
Read the full story in the Bordon Herald
Suzie’s television appearance followed another celebrity encounter last year, when television presenter Phil Spencer visited Hollywater Hens and bought six chickens.
- When buying chickens look for bright eyes, clean nostrils, smooth legs and glossy feathers.
- Sow sunflower seeds for your girls to enjoy eating as a treat later in the year.
- Hang up old CDs in the run the shiny reflective will amuse the flock and scare wild birds away from the pen.
Chicken expert Suzie Baldwin will be on Channel 5’s “The Saturday Show” this weekend. The show is on Saturday 26th March from 9:30am till 11.30am.
Matt Barbet and Gaby Roslin will be joined by celebrity guests to discuss the hot topics.
This week Suzie will be on the show with with Tony Hadley, of 80’s Group Spandau Ballet, and other pop stars and actresses with some of Hollywater Hens’ chicks and chickens.
Tune in to hear get some tips on chicken keeping.