Muscovy Duck

Muscovy Duck
Roosting on the gate

2011 - My second year of blogging in Brittany

I felt I would like to share some of the photographs I have taken so far this year and some from other years. I live in a beautiful part of Brittany and just love being here. It's a lovely place to photograph and enjoy being in through all the seasons and hopefully this blog will show you where I live my life.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

New Fish, New ducks, Sheep and Josselin Chateau and other buildings

I’ve had a week which has concentrated on the animals here.

There were angel fish advertised on the local expat website and I exchanged some of my Kribensis, born in October last year, for two lovely angel fish.

The new fish have a knack of swimming off just as I am taking a shot of them, so the photographs aren't brilliant and don't really show they're lovely yellowy orange colours.

Later in the week,  I collected four Indian Runners. I haven’t had this breed of duck since I was living in Cornwall and I love them. I got a white pair and a black pair – they’re so funny to watch. Then the following day the same sellers advertised some Khaki Campbells, a breed I also had in Cornwall and I couldn’t resist and went back to collect them, plus another black Indian Runner drake who had always lived with them. They have settled in well and aren’t interested in the separate house I had made ready for them, but rush in with the hens each evening and sleep in the hen house.

That was the good news.  Now the horrid news.  Bramwell, my ram lamb from last year, died overnight and this morning was found in a shelter near the barn.  His mother, Mary, died this afternoon.  Neither of them had a mark on them, so I have no idea what happened but am thinking that it might be poisoning of some sort.   I spent about half an hour up with the animals yesterday after bringing the second lots of ducks back and they both seemed lively and absolutely fine.   It's very sad.

Yesterday, I had time to waste before I collected the Khaki Campbells, so I drove on down to Josselin, a place I had never visited. It’s a lovely town. I parked by the river and watched the fast flowing current and the dog walkers and joggers using the bank, while eating a scrumptiously moist leek and lardon quiche I had bought from my favourite Mur de Bretagne bakery. The sun was out and I opened the car window and enjoyed the warmth of it.

The spring flowers are out in profusion here now and I took these photographs of part of a bank of daffodils near St Caradec and forsythia near Josselin.
I can't wait to get on with sowing seeds in the polytunnels.  On Friday, we washed off the inside and outside of the polythene and tomorrow we should dig some of our homemade compost into the polytunnel beds and then I can start in earnest.  I bought in some batavia lettuce plants yesterday which I shall be planting too, and they should be ready for the Easter holidays when my daughter and grandson will be here.
I have the potatoes chitting in the gym and when the potato bed has had compost added too, then I shall plant them out at the beginning of April.  I've bought Charlotte which I find a good potato, and have been given some others free by the garden shop but have already lost the label, so they will be a surprise!
The eggs in the incubator are now on Day 13 and if they  are fertile, then hatching should begin on 7 March.  Fingers crossed!     
The hens are laying well now, and the eggs from the older hens are really large in contrast with the eggs layed by the chicks hatched in the early Autumn.  

My first year here, I had two pigs.  They were Gloucester Old Spots crossed with Saddlebacks and were lovely animals.  I spent ages up on the field with them as they were so friendly.  If you scratched them behind the ears they lay down on their backs to have their tummies tickled.  After the awful time I have had with the sheep, I am now thinking of having a couple of piglets to grow on instead of going the sheep route again.  The pig shed is still on the field and it will ony need a dozen posts and some pig fencing to extend the existing fencing to make a secure and good area for them.     I'll just have to find someone who's selling the sort of piglets that I would like to look after.

Right - to end on good news, my daughter who finished College last week with a Triple Distinction, had her first interview on Friday and got the job!  I'm so proud.