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Author Topic: Home and insulation  (Read 10343 times)
Greenbeast
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« Reply #15 on: March 12, 2014, 08:27:01 AM »

here we go

http://www.navitron.org.uk/forum/index.php/topic,22276.0.html
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biff
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« Reply #16 on: March 12, 2014, 08:44:09 AM »

Morning Mart,
              I once built a house into the side of a hill overlooking a beautiful lake,It was unspoiled then and the regs concerning the house construction were very strict.I got it built and we lived there for 6 years.Every year we saw the drama played out on the lake below.There was the North of the lake and the south of the lake and the reed beds grew in profusion on the north east side, in the lee of another hill.The reed beds would make up no more than an acre and the swans needed these reed beds to build there nests and screen them from the preying eyes of humans.
            So,each year, they fought over the reed beds and there was nothing anyone could do but watch nature take its course.The losers would drift to the Southern end of the lake bloodied and beaten.They would maybe starve for a week before keeling over and floating away before Mr Fox was brave enough to get close.
       However,some years odd things happened and two males would guard the nest.This combination was much more aggressive and needed more room.So I got out my Lorenz library and looked it up and there it was,all down in black and white,documented by the great man himself(of course a "reformed" great man who learned a deal from the Russians during his stay there Grin).
     You know of course that swans are well able to take care of any foolish dog that ventures too near their patch.It is a very painful experience for a dog owner to watch his dog being lured out of its depth and then have its skull caved in. Swans are the most beautiful birds you could possible imagine but there lives are tough and their laws are even tougher.Swans figure a lot in ancient Irish myths and fairey tales such as the "Children of Lir".However Christianity managed to mingled and muddle up most of the original tales.The stories have one thing in common,none have happy endings.I would have a health respect for swans.
                                     Biff
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Greenbeast
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« Reply #17 on: March 12, 2014, 09:04:27 AM »

I actually saw swans in flight for the first time ever this morning, swooping fairly low over the road i was on across the misty marshes, very pleasant experience on my commute
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todthedog
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« Reply #18 on: March 12, 2014, 07:08:51 PM »

Love the stories Mart.
You would be right not to trust Trex, she has a vicious left hook.
It is really rewarding when you can get a wild creature to trust you. Seems a lovely chap.
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« Reply #19 on: March 12, 2014, 09:41:11 PM »

Hi Biff. There is something special about Swans, they really are quite majestic. Today's stroll to the lake, revealed all 3 signets still bravely trying to stay, but all 3 together and about 10 feet up the bank, away from the lake. I didn't see Mr Swan, as I walked an outside circuit, trying to re-open a path that has closed with brambles. Nearly done, just a few more stompy strolls, armed with my trusty Fiskars secateurs should do it.

The lake is only about 14 years old, nothing more than a scooped out bowl, with some cheap landscaping, but it's getting well established now. There are about 20 large fenced areas where trees and bushes have now filled. but going back a few years, when thinner, the swans (during flight lessons) had a tendency of landing inside them and getting stuck. So I have on about 10 occasions climbed in and carried a swan out. They are surprisingly light.

Tod, I got Flash'ed again tonight, slight noise of catflap going, and on investigating, there he was in the conservatory having a munch. He let me get most of the way in, but bottled it and fled at the last moment. However he was waiting patiently outside the backdoor for some fresh food. Slight progress, he didn't wait for me to close the door this time (which I then have to slowly re-open) but came up almost immediately. Also whilst being fussed he backed off, but not out of reach, so I kept gently fussing him, and he moved forward for more grub. Not sure if he'll ever warm to physical attention, but hopefully he'll accept that our place is a safe place for him.

Here's a pic of Hemmie, my sadly missed, but still adored feral friend, who moved in with us about 6 years ago, for his last couple of years. He's definitely Moe's father, and very similar to Flash, but

**just got flash'ed again**

I'm back, where was I, I don't think Flash is old enough to be Hemmie's, but possibly a descendant. Haven't had a good look at his toes yet, Hemmie had 8 extra, Moe has 4 extra.

Hemmie cat, some years back:



Flash cat, just now:



And, whilst this is all going on, Mickey cat (who lives 2 streets over) lying down behind me, enjoying the facilities:



Forgive the mess, decorating small bedroom, and dumped everything in here, much to the appreciation of the Cardiff Cat Club.

Mart.
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clockmanFR
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« Reply #20 on: March 12, 2014, 10:04:02 PM »

Mart, Mrs CM is in Cardiff next week, shall I send her round your place?   Shocked
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biff
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« Reply #21 on: March 12, 2014, 10:45:03 PM »

Hi Mart,
        You obviously have a way with wild animals.I would not go near a swan.
                                               Biff
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« Reply #22 on: March 13, 2014, 07:35:52 AM »

Hi Mart,
        You obviously have a way with wild animals.I would not go near a swan.
                                               Biff

Hi Biff, they're not too bad, unless they have very young signets with them. When stuck I found it quite easy to grab em, just walk up gently, they 'give it large' (literally), then try to waddle off. Step up quick to their side, squat down, knee and thigh to one side (trapping the wing down), arm over and under, trapping the other wing, and hand round neck, holding neck with circle formed by finger to thumb, so not actually holding tight. I'd guess they weigh about 15 to 20 pounds.

That's the easy bit. The tricky bit is letting them go. I'm sure there must be a trick to it, as 50% of the time I've done it, the ungrateful gits get a well aimed wingtip flick right in my face.

The current pair moved in about 5 years ago driving the resident female off when nesting season arrived. Sadly her partner 'Hitler' had gone off to a rescue centre after losing a wing following an incident with an American Bulldog. He was one stroppy dominant swan, and would actually leave the safety of the water to chase dogs - a silly move, as dogs are brave and not all are intimidated by the show of size.

One year, when the signets were only about a week old, Hitler's missus brought them over to me for some free food, but they were just too small and he was just too stressed, so he climbed out and kept pecking my calf, then when I squated down to protect my battered leg, he started smacking me across the shoulder blades with his wing. I tried a peace offering of some bread, which he snatched out of my fingers and tossed across the grass. I decided I was stressing him too much, and didn't want him to hurt his wing, so made a tactical retreat. Once the signets were 2 weeks old he relaxed and was happy for the free food. Bit of a nutter, but a very good parent.

Mart.
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« Reply #23 on: March 13, 2014, 07:38:21 AM »

Mart, Mrs CM is in Cardiff next week, shall I send her round your place?   Shocked

Hiya CM. Of course, all are welcome. I'll make her a cup of tea, and place it on the back door step if she's brave and friendly enough to approach?  fingers crossed!

Mart.
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skyewright
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« Reply #24 on: March 13, 2014, 09:43:19 AM »

Yeah, me too. I've often heard of a duck down duvet, but never a cat down jumper.
SWMBO has a cartoon clipped from a mag years ago. It shows a couple on a sofa, surrounded by cats, in an obviously cold house. The caption is "Pass me another cat".  Grin
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David
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« Reply #25 on: March 13, 2014, 10:05:09 AM »

Well, after 2 years of patience, I managed to just touch him last week, and during the next 3 visits managed a gentle fuss, having bribed him with some fresh wet food. Yesterday he let me stroke him properly, he's a big solid boy, but extremely scared. But finally managed a photo.
Great work. One of our rescues spent several weeks in a corner huddled behind a strategically placed box (emerging for the essentials when we weren't around). She was soon  happy to fuss a hand dangled over the box, but it was ages before we could manage eye contact & physical contact at the same time. It was about 5 years before she jumped up on a knee (& even then the knee had to be hidden by a cushion). She's been with us around 18 years now (& so we think she's about 20?). She's still her own boss (& ours!) but we seem to be considered pretty thoroughly (though not perfectly) trained up to suit her requirements now.  Grin Grin
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David
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todthedog
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« Reply #26 on: March 13, 2014, 05:14:51 PM »

I have never had a problem with swans but I would be very wary around breeding time.

Our first geese came to us second hand so to speak, absolute little *hit. I could handle him OK hand round the neck and other arm sweep up under the arm.  However a little slow one day and still bare the scar on the thigh, lucky not a few inches to the right. It's like having flesh twisted off with pliers.

However a week or so later he killed a chicken and Mrs T signed the death warrent.  Confit he became. We then found a pair of guinea geese, a few days out of the egg so to speak.  Totally different,grown up with us come and say hello, pets in fact.  Mott to stay away from the all white bu**ers.
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« Reply #27 on: March 14, 2014, 11:22:25 AM »

Hi skyewright, you sound as daft as me!

News Flash! He popped round yesterday afternoon, first daylight visit in the 2 years, in fact, last 2 summers we didn't see him at all. Same routine, rattled a food bowl, then waited for him to approach. He also curled up on our path for 5 mins so seemed more relaxed. Then Hobbes (fat ginga) arrived, and didn't seem bothered by Flash at all, so definitely a submissive cat, or else Hobbes would have 'had a go'.

Neighbours asked me to feed their cats today till sunday, as they've popped off to their little westcoast holiday home. Their cats Zig & Zag are about 18 years old, and live in the greenhouse when they are away. Text message from neighbours last night suggested that there may be a squatter in the greenhouse.

This morning when I arrived Zig & Zag were waiting for me inside (there is a catflap in the back), and as I opened the door, up popped Flash from a spare bed, ran to the catflap, but seemed to recognise me and calmed down, before finally leaving but watching from a short safe distance. As far as I could tell the Z's weren't at all bothered by him.

These neighbours are the ones that first befriended (and named) Hemmie many years ago. So that's two places where he can blag a warm bed at night.

Mart.
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skyewright
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« Reply #28 on: March 14, 2014, 12:14:42 PM »

Hi skyewright, you sound as daft as me!
I'll take that as a compliment. Thanks.  Grin
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David
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« Reply #29 on: March 14, 2014, 05:56:59 PM »

Love it Mart,  Grin
I'm sure it is a compliment skyewright, I would happily be called daft by M.
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