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Sunday, 21 February 2016

And more eggy tales.....plus a rant about rubbish

It seems there have been more eggs laid than we thought. I thought the last remaining Shumen had been a bit late laying this year and put it down to age. She is four this year and I thought she was slowing down. But no. After Dave saw her coming out from under the goat platform he moved it to find a multi coloured clutch of fourteen eggs, including a few white ones which can only be the Shumen. (I had mentioned that some hens had been coming out from under there a while ago, but the platform was too heavy for me to move!) Unfortunately we had no idea how long they had been there, and though I had frozen so many and had few in the kitchen we decided to scramble the fourteen and feed them back to the chickens. They looked fine when broken as it happens....but there are a lot more where they came from.
Secret nest

Six Shumen eggs amongst them

Scrambled eggs for the chooks
And they keep coming.....
Banana egg custard

Frittata to take to my sister for lunch
Eggy dough to make fruit buns...they were yummy

After a visit to a friend in the next village we also had a couple of goose eggs given. I had never had goose eggs before and assumed they would be a larger version of duck eggs, with very thick white and a yolk a bit bigger than a hen's egg. But actually they were nearly all yolk and with thinner white than the duck, more like a hen. I forgot to take a photo but they made a great omelette for two! Interesting.
Goose eggs and one of our large hen eggs

Still no eggs from the ducks, but a friend of our's with several different ducks says his aren't laying yet, nor are the ducks the goose people bought from us last year. By the way, for those who remember Ducky, he has grown into a splendid drake, and very virile!

All the fowl were let into the garden for a nibble of grass and they were ecstatic! Busy busy. We decided all that was in there was plants which would survive a nibble and they are unlikely to bother with the garlic. What we didn't reckon on was that they would sniff out a trough of recently sprouted salad leaves at the top of the outside steps! Not sure how many of those will recover.


Meanwhile the Sussex chicks are huge! They are dwarfing the other two. They have their door open now when the weather is dry but with chicken wire over the door so they can't get out. We think they might be too big to get through the holes in the run so when the weather warms a bit they can go out and start being proper chickens. Next week they should be joined by the next batch so will have to share the light between two pens.

Dave has been busy in the garden, widening the borders for more flowers, clearing and tidying and fixing the outside sink tap which froze and blew off in the cold spell. How we've missed that tap! We managed to get most of the bits he needed but eventually had to get the neighbour's help to get a short length of pipe with threads on each end. Anyway, all done and we needed a new tap on there anyway. Encouraged by another blogger I would like to get round to tiling the outside sink and making it look nicer. Concrete sinks have a peculiar smell.....



One of our favourites, Veronica, has come through well

The cornel is in full blossom

Dave has put the new cover on the polytunnel, a bit loose but OK

Posts supporting the roof....just in case
And under all the mayhem the peas are sprouting!

We have been round to my sister and BIL's house to collect some of their unwanted furniture and very grateful we...and the animals... are to have it. There is a corner sofa with the added bonus of a spare bed which is firmer than the squishy one which came with our house, and with nice high back for Dave, if he can get a space. Bella particularly likes to be able to watch what the neighbours are doing from her new spot. We also have a kitchen table which is outside and covered for the moment till we decide how we are going to use it.
Charlie trying out the high back

zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

My sister's daffs

After one visit to my sister's we stopped off at one of the places by the river where we like to photograph birds. The side of the river has long been a site for the locals to dump their manure and building rubbish, as well as digging small pits for the sandy gravel. It took a while to get used to the piles of rubbish, but over the years the pits created have developed into small habitats full of insects, frogs and terrapins, which in turn feeds such birds as the iconic white stork, herons and rare black storks. The bigger excavated pits have colonies of sand martins and bee eaters nesting in the sandy banks. Last year the rubbish was flattened and things were looking a bit tidier. But now it is an absolute nightmare. There seems to be a lot of building work going on locally and the rubbish from renovations is being dumped in huge amounts, as well as general rubbish including plastic sacks and bottles, masses of plastic box strapping, valuable stone, concrete and general rubble. Not just at the regular site along the river, but at random sites including where the sand martins and bee eaters were nesting. The consequences of all this on the wildlife and sheep, goats and cattle which graze there, will be dreadful. So terribly sad. I dread to think what might be leaking into the river, Dave will have to resist going in from now on.

The pictures say it all









And how it should look


14 comments:

  1. Swimming in rivers has it's risks especially when rubbish and dead animals enter the water. Be aware that dead animals upstream produce a toxin called bone oil. I covered this when trained to carry out water supply in the army, you wouldn't believe what other nasties are in rivers so best staying out of them.

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    1. Haha, always so positive Bro. Yes, he is aware of nasties as you say. But he's willing to take the risk as are many locals (but not right here any more) as long as there is a healthy poulation of fish, shellfish, amphibians, reptiles, waterbirds and mammals actually living in there. When it's not teeming with life and there are signs of dead creatures then he will worry.

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  2. It's so lovely to think that spring is just around the corner. Love the blog, as always:)

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    1. Thank you Janet. Yes, there are more signs every day that spring is on it's way. Though I'm sure the weather has a few surprises for us yet.

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  3. Do they not have a landfill/tip over there? Where is the household garbage taken? It must be so nice having your sister close by.

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    1. Yes they do, they have rubbish collection like any other country. But these tips are not regulated or policed. If it was in our village we would see the village Mayor (every village has one) who should be keeping an eye on this sort of thing. It's not exactly hidden, you can see it from the road. As I said, manure and such is one thing, this is business and it's wrecking an area well used by families in summer, fishermen and herders as well as wildlife. I think the Mayor has his own reasons for allowing it, who knows

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  4. I love all the photos of your cooked goodies. Don't you just love how when we scramble eggs for our girls they are such a lovely colour due to the varied diet our beloved girls get.

    Our girls are all starting back egg laying at the moment and tonight we are having omelette from our bantam girls. We have eight bantams and I am using five eggs for the two of us (where I would use four large eggs). It's a treat to have enough for this after winter.

    Such a shame about the rubbish dumping.

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    1. One thing about the ex-commercials is they will lay all through winter so we have not bought eggs for a couple of years. So the spring glut of eggs soon loses it's shine. Couldn't face an omelette at this time.

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  5. So sad to see the rubbish in such a lovely area. Hope there is an incentive for the locals to do something about it soon. Loving your blog. Best wishes, Michele from Somerset

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    1. We can only hope. But the most that will get done is that it will get flattened like last year and then it will begin again. Being in Europe will eventually stop this sort of thing but it could take years

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  6. Ugh, that rubbish is bloody awful. I feel for you as well as all the wildlife and everything else which will be affected. By a watercourse is even worse than if it was, say, in a forest or on heath land.

    So glad you got the polytunnel fixed and what luck that a spare cover was coming with your sister's things. The dogs look very happy with their very own sofa. I expect the cats have taken over the other and you have to sit on the floor! :-)

    I commented on your previous post too - haven't been looking at blogs lately as too busy reading campervan forums and the like!

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    1. So I read, you must be so looking forward to getting out and about this summer.
      Yes, the rubbish is awful, but as there has been more minor historical rubbish between the latest year's dumpings and the river hopefully it will not impact that way. So sad to see birds foraging amongst it though. I am hoping the abundant wildlife in the river and the fact that we have never seen a dead fish is a good sign.

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  7. I love all the photos of your cooked goodies. https://www.afu.ac.ae/en/sru/goals/

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  8. I love all the photos of your cooked goodies. https://www.afu.ac.ae/en/sru/goals/

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