Hello from France

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Hello from France

Postby NicolsT » Mon May 15, 2017 7:42 am

Hi, I'm NicolsT and I'm a PP refugee! Thank you for allowing me to join this forum. We live half and half in France and the Welsh Marches. Have just rehomed all my chooks in the UK, and will be starting again in the Lot-et-Garonne later this year. I've been a chicken keeper for thirteen years.
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Re: Hello from France

Postby Marigold » Mon May 15, 2017 10:40 am

Hi NicholsT, glad you made the journey across from Practical Poultry forum to Poultrykeeper safely! We have several members who keep poultry in France and I expect Chrismahon will be interested in taking to you about your plans. I'm shamefully ignorant about geography - which part of France is Lot-et-Garonne?
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Re: Hello from France

Postby Margaid » Mon May 15, 2017 11:23 am

Glad you've joined us NicholsT.

I'm Welsummers on PPF
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Re: Hello from France

Postby Minorcafan » Mon May 15, 2017 1:12 pm

Hi

I am in the North of Scotland and enjoying the first rain (drizzle) for quite a few weeks. Very unusual :D
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Re: Hello from France

Postby NicolsT » Mon May 15, 2017 2:11 pm

Lot-et-Garonne is south-ish. Not far from Bergerac and Bordeaux. Wine and prune country. We're just on the borders of the Gironde and Dordogne.
Hot today. Should be gardening, but I'm playing on the internet instead!
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Re: Hello from France

Postby MrsBiscuit » Mon May 15, 2017 3:15 pm

Welcome :D I am another person who lives between 2 countries, Portugal and the U.K. But I have lived in France as well, in the Tarn, and we have regular visits to Normandy to see family. I do envy you, prunes, wine and duck :D
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Re: Hello from France

Postby chrismahon » Sun Nov 12, 2017 1:17 pm

Rather late I know but welcome to the forum NicolsT. When you posted this we were just about to sign the Acte de Vente for our new home in Mirande, Gers and we were frantically loading the van and trailer for the first of 16 trips to move the household, gardening and chicken stuff. The chickens were the last 10 loads as we shipped the coops assembled to save some time. Anyway Marigold, Lot-et-Garonne is the 'County' directly above us. I know it quite well as we passed through it repeatedly to move from the Dordogne to the Gers four years ago. There is someone on the Omlet forum living in L-et-G as well.

The only reason I found this post now is the weather is awful so we are stuck inside and I tried to access the Practical Poultry forum only to discover it doesn't exist! But the Google search bought this post up at the top of the list so that's why I have now read it.

Yesterday evening we had a count-up of the survivors from the original 28 we exported over 5 years ago. We still have 10 which are the original 3 TNN hens bought specially to export, plus 6 Wyandotte hens and a Buff Orpington cock that we hatched 8 years ago. We have bred over here from our original stock and have 10 survivors (4 TNN's, 5 Leghorn bantams and an accidental Orpington x Wyandotte cock called Chester) plus 6 we have bought in France, so a total of 26 in 9 coops.
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Re: Hello from France

Postby NicolsT » Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:54 am

Thanks for the welcome Chris. Loving being in France, although I haven't replaced my chooks yet. Still going backwards and forwards trying to sell the house in Wales! Should complete before Christmas. Sitting now looking at the most glorious morning, hard frost, clear blue sky, and a bit of fog in the river valley. Surprisingly, even though it is Sunday, I can't hear the usual cacophony of guns which is the only downside of living here in the winter! I have nothing against guns per se (my husband was out shooting in Wales yesterday), but here they are a little frightening and out of control, which makes walking the dogs a hazard!

Will be starting the search for chickens in the spring...hoping to get Marans again, but have yet to build their enclosure. Lots to do!
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Re: Hello from France

Postby chrismahon » Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:13 pm

It took us 4 years to sell our house in England NicolsT due entirely to estate agent's lack of market knowledge, but it was worth the wait because as we gained experience we changed our purchase requirements considerably. Hopefully yours won't take that long.

Nice weather down here as well and due to get better over the next week. We don't have the hunting problems down here we had in the Dordogne. The Chasse there was a disorganised rabble shooting at anything that moved regardless of what was behind it. In the first two weeks of the season 3 people have been 'accidentally' shot and killed in France, including the child shot by his own Grandfather! There is now a growing lobby to ban hunting and with stricter licensing laws the number of hunters is a quarter of the number 10 years ago.

Marans here are slightly different to those in England as they have feathered feet. Try Angloinfo or Leboncoin if your French is up to it. You may struggle finding a coop as the only ones I've seen are the poor quality Chinese items also sold in England. Country houses here will usually have stone built 'poulailler' but, whilst they are great at keeping chickens cool in Summer, they are a nightmare if they get red mite as our previous neighbour found out- it took 3 months to get the problem under control. They need rendering inside first to fill all the gaps between the stones where mites can hide. You will need a good strong enclosure as we had chasse dogs rip through chicken wire as will wild boar. Here they also run electric lines outside the enclosures. Get Acacia posts as they last quite well (what they use in vineyards)- the Hornbeam we got in the Dordogne rots quite quickly.
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Re: Hello from France

Postby NicolsT » Sun Nov 19, 2017 4:45 pm

All good advice Chris, thanks. Had pure French Marans before...feathered feet and all, I loved them!

Good to know about the wire and the acacia. Wild boar is definitely a problem here! My brother is a carpenter and is going to build me a coop to my specs, but I want to take my time over it, to get it really right. Have seriously considered going down the plastic route, but not sure if I can face it, but then the thought of dealing with red mite in August here is quite daunting! Lots to consider.
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