La Chatte Gitane (or The Gypsy Cat) was the name we chose for our cottage in France at the time. We chose it while on the road, moving house the first time round, from Ireland to France with 2 dogs and 7 cats in the car.
This blog began its insignificant life as a recipe book for friends and family who would ask me repeatedly for a recipe of this, that and the other.
Since then it has taken many different directions, like we did and like gypsies tend to do. Sometimes making a U-turn and revisiting familiar roads and taking a break when necessary.
You'll find recipes here, but also musings about the places we've called home, the gardens that we've established, not always successfully, the homes we've improved and the environments we've lived in. Currently, after yet another stint in Ireland, we're back in France @ Le Mas d'Ayen

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

An Eerie Silence...

....has come over the hen house and run. But I  am inwardly screaming, pinking away a few tears.
We always say goodnight to the girls and Arthur the 3rd, when they are settled high up in the rafters of their home, before we close the door. We didn't clip their wings, just so they could find higher ground in case of an emergency.

This morning when Bert went to say good morning he thought to himself that it was so quiet. Normally there is a lot of racket going on while Arthur is chasing the girls for a bit of nooky.
When he opened the door he was in for a shock. 
Two hens have escaped the carnage that happened during the night or early morning. A consequence of the tiniest hole that would accommodate a mink !

This is the least offensive photo of the carnage.

Mammy hen and baby where safe in the Wendy house. The question is for how long ?
And what about the two survivors ? I can't possibly let them sleep there again tonight.

I am quietly screaming !


  1. RIP poor little Arthur x

  2. Sorry to read of your loss.
    I think that you have to do two things: one put down some mink traps and the other is to bury the fence wire deep all around the coop into the earth say 250mm.

  3. Oh no. That must have been a horrible discovery. X

  4. Oh Patricia I am so sorry. How sad.

  5. This is horrible, I'm so sorry. I know what it's like to find a scene of complete carnage. I understand your quiet screaming, it goes along with an icy cold feeling in the pit of your stomach.

    We were once out buying 14 new hens to grow our flock and arrived home with them only to find that a fox had killed 16 of our girls and the cockerels, who had all died fighting to protect the remaining hens.


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