As per my comments on my previous post, one of the chooks had had botty problems for a number of weeks that no amount of vaseline applied to the appropriate area would fix. From my little (gloved) feel some calcium appeared to be stick on her innards making pooing rather difficult, and laying eggs impossible.
I did not enjoy putting her out of her misery as she was my favourite chicken.
We do need more chickens, as we are always short of eggs. We’ll see how the next couple of weeks, and months go, and make a decision. We want to avoid the ‘introduction process’ again of adding chickens to our existing flock, as we found the process difficult and it is not something we want to repeat.
Long term we are looking at contacting Aviaries4u to get a much larger, custom run created on the concrete base we had placed last year. This will give more room and allow maintenance to be quicker, dryer, and easier to complete.