I feel I must apologise for my lack of blogging; lots has been happening since my last post!

First of all, since the first post, we have not only joined the National Mouse Club (at the end of January), but we have also attended three NMC shows and our fourth is next weekend!

The first was the Burgess Small Animal Show, held in Harrogate. A two day event with the mouse showing happening on the sunday, we attended both days and stayed over night at a local Premier Inn, in Hornbeam park. The show in itself was incredibly, if slightly overwhelming to a newbie like myself. I throughly enjoyed looking at all the different show catergories and entries, fascinated by the sheer amount of critters present.

I didn't enter this show, due to only being in possession of pet type mice, but when the NMC auction came around, I picked up my first trio of young Variegated, bred by Dave Bumford. I also managed to grab some Astrex from the amazing Megan Buyers, who is trying to improve the variety's curls. The collection of show mice acquired from this show was wide, slightly too much really, but I was unsure of what exactly I wanted to breed.

The next show I attended was Sowood. A far cry from Harrogate's show, it was very small and far less frightful. I managed to meet up with quite a few people who are infamous within the mouse world and had others pointed out to me. I was fortunate enough to talk with many and most at the show. Once again, I did not show. I wished first to learn a little more about the fancy, and the mice, as well as the competition.

At the beginning of April, Manchester was the next show, and after an early start with Blueprint and Gingerbred mousery and a speedy drive through the Peak District, we were picking up Madhouse Stud and zipping off to the show hall. The reason for the early day was that we were all showing, so had to be there on time. Armed with my Variegated and a Black Tan buck, I was ready to go.

Again, the majority of the show was spent sitting around and talking, but I learnt a lot more once again. I managed to talk with more of the famous breeders, all of whom had their own bits of advice and taught me what to look for. It was also after this show that I finally decided on the two varieties I would like to stick to in showing; Variegated and Foxes, in black. Sadly, after Manchester, with new wave of heat coming in for Spring, the majority of my pet stock was wiped out. In a sense, it was a good thing as it got rid of the mice I was never going to use and could never bring myself to sell.

Now, I'm awaiting my first two litters after the wipe out to grow, both of which are pet litters, as well as getting excited for the Sowood show next week. I will be picking up my first trio of Black Foxes from Gary Bayldon's lines and I have already picked up my side project Rexes, which came home on Saturday. I will also be getting my first four Rats, for my small rattery, Anesidora Rattery.

All in all, the last few months have been AMAZING!

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