Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live with my family in rural Herefordshire. We have nearly four acres of garden and woodland, all managed organically and to Permaculture principles, which we share with Chickens, Cats and assorted wildlife. We also grow a lot of our own food, run courses in all sorts of things and make a lot of compost!

I am a Master Composter and have spent more than a decade as a volunteer Community Compost adviser with Garden Organic and my local Council.
I'm a self employed Environmental Educator so I run workshops and events where I talk about compost, veg growing, chicken keeping, cooking, preserving and sustainable living. I also run crafts workshops and Forest School/outdoor play sessions in our wood.

We try to live a more self sufficient lifestyle here, as best we can, while still having a comfortable life and lots of fun.

To learn more about us click on the About Compostwoman tab and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!

Friday 6 June 2014

The weekend starts and farewell Blondin the cockerel.

 Beautiful day here today, fine and sunny and warm with a hint of a breeze.

I did the usual jobs and spent the morning pricking out brassica plants. After lunch Compostman and I went up the road to Hellens Manor to set up the stall for this weekend's The Garden Festival. I and fellow Master Composters are on a stall all weekend, promoting home composting but because I am the one organising our stall I needed to take compost bin, wormery, display boards etc etc and set up at the site.

The organisers are a lovely group of people; the whole event is one I love to attend and Hellens Manor is a delightful place with fabulous grounds and house. One event I always look forward to doing!

We set up and chatted and enjoyed the sunshine and then, with the stall sorted out as much as I could, we came back home. I will be there from 9 am until early evening, both days this weekend.

Later on though, my evening took on a sadder note as I had to dispatch Blondin. He was a magnificent specimen of a cockerel and very attentive to the girls but very noisy, even by cockerel standards and he also kept on leading the hens down the Wood, into fox danger. So for several months I have been trying to re home him but with no joy. He had also begun to be a bit more aggressive towards us.

Tonight though over the space of an hour he launched a series of unprovoked attacks on me and despite repeatedly being cowed, he kept coming back at me, chasing after me and attacking my back. When I got him in the hen run  he repeatedly flew at my face with spurs and claws outstretched. If I had not taken evasive action he would have injured me I have no doubt, as he had already injured my leg and arm.  I cannot have that sort of behaviour in any animal we keep, and so I quickly caught him (and have the further scars to show for it!) and without further ado killed him.

I hate doing that. I really really do hate it but this was beyond the usual posturing  I would expect from a Cockerel. Blondin had been getting more and more aggressive to all of us over the last couple of weeks and tonight the level of aggression went way over what I was prepared to accept. Poor Blondin.

So, a mixed sort of day here at Compost Mansions. I hope the weekend goes better.


  1. Just out of curiosity will you eat Blondin?

    1. Yes, us and/or the cats. Shame but can't have known aggressive animals around - too dangerous.

  2. He obviously didn't understand the pecking order if you excuse the pun, humans first, animals next. Best thing to have done, if he was like that with people he knows, what would he be like with visitors?

    1. Exactly Dc, once I knew what he had become like, if I had left it and then he attacked a visitor...well I really didn't need to think about what I had to do. He was really very scarey and actually he has given me quite a mauling - I have a few big bruises.

  3. Having suffered with vicious cockerels in the past - and havin g the joy of pleasant cockerels - I think you did the right thing.

    1. I agree, he needed to go and breeding those genes on - no thanks.
      next time I will get a nice Orpington - they are lovely :)

  4. We are looking after someones chooks on the allotment for the next two weeks as he's gone on holiday. He has a cockerel that scares me half to death. He has been put on his own while the fella decides what he's going to do with him.

    It has put me off cockerels for ever and I'm only on day two x


Hello! Thank you for reading my blog and for commenting. I try to reply as quickly as I can and I really appreciate your interest in my life and doings here in The Compost Bin.