House moving

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Relocation, relocation

Moving house is supposed to one of the most stressful of events. This week it was our chickens' turn. As it happens they seem to be pretty unflappable and have settled in on the other side of the paddock.

Housekeeping time

October is a quiet time for bees. Pollen-bearing flowers are scarce and the beekeepers main job is to make sure the bees have sufficient stores for winter.

A quick 'heft' of the hives this week suggests they do. 20kg of stores is the bare minimum and both our hives seem to be well over that. It has certainly helped that there is plenty of ivy on the farmhouse — one of the few reliable sources of late-autumn fuel.

Other than that, this is a good time of year to make sure all the supers are clean (burnt off) and stored away. Drawn comb needs to be stored also. There are a number of approaches to this, with the main objective being to deter the dreaded wax moth.

Egg sales have started

Image removed.Egg production has been picking up at Charli's Chooks, as the chickens mature. The egg sizes have also increased and so we are ready to start sales. Initially this is in Grindleford only, where we already have a couple of orders.

Here's a look at our flier. If you are interested in having eggs delivered in our area, email

Operation chicken take away

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The Warren hens are settling down in their new home

The main job at Charli's Chooks this week has been 'operation chicken take away' – moving our new brown hens out of quarantine and integrating them with our main flock at Magclough Farm.

It has been a busy week at Charli's Chooks

Chicken view

A mixture of bee and chicken-related fun has kept us busy this week. We have completed our chicken acquisitions, for now, with 14 warrens arriving from a smallholding near Sheffield. We are hoping these will be strong layers. But they have been settling in and so far haven't been too productive.

Because the arrivals have come from another flock, we are quarantining them on another part of the farm until we are sure of their health.

A blue egg for a blue day?

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First blue

We have had our first blue egg. These are from the 'Cheshire Blue' hybrids which are a cross between Araucanas and, well something else.

It's the Araucanas that add the blue. This is a breed originating from Chile so they should be right at home in the Derbyshire Andes.