Monday, January 30, 2012

End of Month Review

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to be my end of the month post so I went back and read what I had written about for the month. In doing so I realized that some of the information was important and I wanted to be sure it was understood.

From that came the idea of a Month in Review post only instead of my just repeating what I’ve told you I made up a test to do two things.

1. To see if I have been clear in my writing

2. To see who does read my blog.

A. Rodent
B. Canine
C. Mustelidea
A. Badger otter, mink, and weasel
B. Mice, rats, voles, and moles
C. Cats, cougar, lions
A. Wiring buildings
B. Pest Control
C. Both A & B
A. 1000 years
B. Over 3000 years
C. Never we scoop them up out of the wild
A. Cat food
B. Dog food
C. Raw or Made for Ferret food
D. High quality kitten food
E. C & D
A. Low fat content
B. They shouldn't have any fat
C. High Fat content
A. Child Proofing
B. Pet Proofing
C. You don't have to ferret proof
D. Ferret proofing is an ongoing thing
E. A & B
F. A, B, & D

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Have a Chittering Good Day,


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Know Your Landlord's Rules About Ferrets



Just because your rental agreement says pets are allowed doesn’t necessarily mean that ferrets are welcomed. It is better to be over cautious than to find out a month later that your landlord has a strict policy against ferrets or any other type of unusual pet.

Some landlords will require a high deposit to cover any damage your new “strange” pet might cause. You may also find that you need to have a special permit to own your ferret. This can vary from state to state except in California and Hawaii where ferrets are illegal to own.

Active military personal are moved around and for those that reside on base it should be known that ferrets are not welcomed. The reasoning is not known and will probably never be revealed.

If you find a landlord who has never had a renter who had ferrets ask if the two of you can sit down and discuss how you will prevent property damage and offer to pay a deposit above the other required monies and take out some type of liability insurance encase of an accident involving your ferret.

Be sure to keep your ferret up to date on all vaccinations and have the paperwork available if the need for it arises. Also draw up a well-written contract that you both agree on and have it signed and notarized so that it what you both have come to an agreement on cannot be changed without consent on either party’s part.

I have been lucky in the fact that my roommate and landlady Judy has been learning right along with me about ferrets and have no problems with them.

But I have witnessed a ferret being returned because he wasn’t allowed in the apartment complex the girl lived in much to the relief of her mother who didn’t live with the girl.

Ferrets are still a fairly unknown type of pet and bad press has made them out to be vicious animals that coupled with all the misconceptions many people don’t want to take the chance of having them on their property.

By helping others to understand your unique pet, you help to remove the bad labels people have attached to ferrets.

This may earn you the title of "That crazy ferret lady" but it is worth it if you can help educate just one person.

Have a Chittering Good Day,





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Monday, January 23, 2012

Featured Ferret: Pooh Bear

Hi hoomanz Iz Pooh Bear

Az youz can see I iz not a yellow bear in a red shirt but Iz might like honey. *chitters*

I iz relaxing in my hammock here at da Metro Animal Services in Louisville, KY while waiting fer my Jimmy Buffet to come take me awayz from here and my island forever home.

When I am not napping I iz a busy girl checking out all the sightz and soundz here.

I like being held by da hoomanz here so dey fink I would being in my own pet hooman’z armz.

Want to know more about mez den slip off a note to Metro Animal Services and put Pooh Bear in da Subject line.
If I iz not da girl fer youz please pass diz info to a hooman I might be da right girl fer.

Disclosure: I receive no compensation for featuring ferrets on my blog other than the hope that someone will give these fun, furry little springs a wonderful home.

Have a Chittering Good Day


P.S. would you nominate us for a Shorty Award only need to do once thank you.
Nominate Manny-n- Marcuz for a social media award in the Shorty Awards!

Ferret Colors

By now you are just starting to realize that owning a ferret is a bit more involved than you might have thought at first. Still it is better to have an understanding of what owning a ferret really is like before you run out and get your first little ball of cuteness from the local pet/feed store.

Time to take a moment to realize that you will have to train them to use the litter box, not to bite, and what is and isn’t acceptable behavior. Also if you have other pets you will have to think about how they will interact with your new ferret. Not all pets get along with ferrets and it isn’t worth the stress to the ferret, the other pet, and you.

I have been lucky that my ferrets and the dogs, cats, and even a bird have all dealt with them. Granted none of my ferrets are free roamers as explained in the ferret proofing posts.But they have all had a chance to interact with extreme supervision.

Now to decide on the ferret you want. You can start with a kit bought at the local pet/feed store or you could adopt one from a local shelter. Please be responsible and only get a fixed and descented ferret.

Unlike dogs and cats, ferrets don’t have breeds they have coat colors and patterns.(1) These refer to their fur. There are different colors/patterns to choose from. Only the guard hairs are the upper coat and have color and the undercoat is almost always white.

Sable is one of the most common colors. Manny, who is one of my boys, is a good example of a Sable

Chocolate: The guard hairs are a deep brown often referred to as Milk chocolate.


Albino: White coat and pink eyes and pink noses. Do not let people tell you that Albinos are mean they just look scary. Albinos are the pit bulls of the ferret world. Blizzard was one of the sweetest ferrets I have owned and wouldn’t hurt a fly.

Champagne: is a variation of a chocolate. The guard hairs are tan or diluted chocolate, and the undercoat is white or cream

Silver: This coat color has a number of variations ranging from light silver to almost gray. Many silvers will eventually lose all of their silver markings and end up as Dark-eyed Whites.

Marked White:

Dark Eyed White also known as DEW: White coat with black or burgundy eyes


Panda: can be any color and their distinctive marking is a white head that extends down to their shoulders and includes the neck and throat (a bib). They may have colored smudges of guard hairs around their eyes, and colored guard hairs form a saddle shape on their backs. Their eyes are generally a shade of burgundy, and their noses are pink or pink with a white outline. In addition to their heads, other white markings include mitts on all four feet, knee patches, and a white tail tip.(1)

DEW, Blaze, and Pandas can have a 75% chance of being deaf from a genetic defect called Waadenburg syndrome.

All but sable, chocolate, and albinos will eventually become DEWs after shedding their coats. This could happen in a ferret’s first year of life or after many years of blowing their coats.

Disclosure: Pictures are from Pet Finder’s site unless otherwise noted. Coat color descriptions come from Dr. Forest Smith’s website. I receive no compensation from either site.

1. Coat colors

Have a Chittering Good Day,


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Medical Care

Not all veterinarians take care of ferrets. Having a vet that knows about ferrets is a plus when you have to take your fuzzy butt to get his/her vaccines or they are sick or injured.

Vets that take care of ferrets are often referred to as an exotic vet.
This does not mean that the ferret is a wild animal. There are two categories of exotics. Wild exotic and domestic exotic, all the word exotic refers to is the fact you have decided to have an unusual pet.

Be pro active in the care of your ferret. Don’t know what something means then ask. Most are willing to tell you what they meant and how it will affect your ferret.

I have had both good and bad vet experiences. The bad vet had only her opinion and would not except any other possible outcomes, my new and great vet not only tells me what he thinks is going on with my fur babies but will discuss different options with me.

I am constantly asking questions and doing my own independent research about ferrets, something more ferret owners need to do.

Ferrets need to have a rabies vaccine and canine distemper and should also have a heartworm preventative as all of these can prove to be fatal for your ferret.

Ferrets are prone to certain issues such as:

Mast cell tumors
Juvenile carcinoma

These four top the list of medical issues. There is also the flu, bruises, broken bones, teeth, hearing, and eye problems.

Ferrets can get/give the flu from/to you and while you can treat the flu at home you need to be aware of any changes that don’t seem to be part of having the flu.

This is just a brief overview of some of the medical care a ferret could need in his/her short lifespan. By being proactive in your ferret’s healthcare you know you are doing the very best for them. Medical care can range from a hundred dollars: Basic office visit, to the thousands: surgery or nercropsy

While there are a couple of pet insurances that do cover ferrets be sure to read the fine print as they don’t often cover certain surgeries or types of care.

Have a Chittering Good Day,


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Wordless Wednesday


Featured Ferrets: Gadget and Gizmo

Hi wez Gadget and GizmoPetfinder

and wez are hanging out at our foster mom of Kansas City Ferret Hotline in Roeland Park, KS

Wez hoping to find a great forever home wif someone that has time for uz. Wez are about four years old and wez get along wif everybody including dogs and cats. Wez are also litter box trained for in our cage and wez use puppy pads or paper when wez out playing.

Wez have love to help organize things for you. Petfinder

Need more info about uz den dash off a note to with Gadget n Gizmo in the subject line.

Please if wez aren’t da ferrets fer you please pass this post on to a hooman who is in need of being owned. Fank youz

Disclosure: I receive no compensation for featuring ferrets on my blog other than the hope that someone will give these fun, furry little springs a wonderful home.

Have a Chittering Good Day


P.S. would you nominate us for a Shorty Award only need to do once thank you.
Nominate Manny-n- Marcuz for a social media award in the Shorty Awards!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Ferret Proofing

Ferret proofing is important to keep your ferret safe. Many first time ferret owners have been surprised by their ferret showing up on top of the bookcase, in a dresser drawer, or outside of their cage.

A ferret can get their head through a hole that is about one inch the rest of their body will follow. A fifty cent piece is about 2 inches in diameter and can be used as a reference when ferret proofing your home.

Ferret proofing is a three step process.

First child proof this is just the start.

Second puppy/dog and kitten/cat proof this helps to insure a safe environment for your ferret.

I have said before my boys Manny and Marcuz only get to play in one room of the house because of its age and the fact we have Trixie, the bloodhound, and Boyd the cat and they all need supervision when playing together.

Now for the third step which is even more in depth then the first two steps.

The first place you need to check is your ferret’s home. Is it secure? You might be surprised to find that your industrious little fur ball is able to slip between the door and that taught spring with no problems. I had that problem with my little girl Gweny. Fix by using the clip end of leash to secure the spot your ferret escapes from but don’t ever think that it is secure.

I had to use two clips on either side and in the middle of the door before I was able to keep Gweny from escaping. I should also say her cage was the kind that had the small squared wire like that on a rabbit cage.

The boy’s cage is a large dog crate with the bars being about ½ inch apart neither is able to slip through the bars but they are able to slide the latch to the side. Again finding a way to make it so I am not greeted by one of them scratching on my bedroom door was a challenge until I found a type of connector that wraps around the bars of the cage and the latch handle.

Next is the door to the room. If it doesn’t latch securely a ferret can and will work at getting the door open. To a ferret, the grass is greener on the other side. Again, I found an easy fix by adding a hook and eye set up to the door. The boys can scratch, paw, dig at the door but it will not swing open. I just have to remember I’ve latched it that way before leaving the room.

Cords draw a ferret’s attention almost as fast as socks and they will climb, pull, and chew on them, which can lead to disastrous results. Unfortunately not all cords can be put up out of the reach of a ferret so coat them generously with Bitter Apple unless you have a ferret who loves it as I did.

James loved sour tasting stuff my fix was a diluted hot pepper spray. The use of cord hiders will work with some ferrets but some will try to find a way to get the cords out of them.

Recliners, couches, and wheeled chairs can be deadly to a ferret. Many ferrets have lost their lives due to crush injuries because they were in, under, or near these pieces of furniture when an unsuspecting human rocked, sat, or moved.

High spots seem to be the siren’s call for ferrets and they can climb if determined enough and they don’t have any depth perception. Try to eliminate ways your ferret can access higher places and be on alert for them climbing stuff.

This is just a start of ferret proofing and it is an ongoing event for any ferret owner. I have said it before and will say it again.

Ferrets are the perpetual two year-old and kitten that never grow up rolled into one tiny body and are constantly looking for new challenges.

Have a Chittering Good Day,


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Feeding Your Ferret

There are several views on what a ferret should be fed. Raw vs. Processed. Both have their merits in the well-being of your ferret it comes down to how you feel about feeding your ferret unprocessed, uncooked, and/or live meat. Or just being able to pour the food out of a bag.

I personally don’t have the time or the finances to feed Manny and Marcuz a raw diet so they get most of their food out of bag but I do supplement it with treats of chicken liver offered both raw and boiled. The verdict is still out on which way is preferred.

There are many articles online about feeding your ferret a raw diet but do your research carefully and ask a lot of questions before you decide this is the best diet for your ferret.

Even with feeding a processed bagged food there are many things you need to know.

1. A ferret’s digestive process takes 2-3 hours from mouth to elimination.
2. Ferrets need quick digestible protein.
3. Ferrets need high levels of fat
4. Ferrets don’t have a Cecum so they can’t process plants

You need to learn how to read the food labels on bags of ferret food to get them the best one for their needs. Pet food labels are regulated by two agencies in the United States.

The federal regulations are enforced by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).

“The FDA established standards applicable for all animal feeds, including but not limited to the proper identification, the proper listing of ingredients.”(2)

“The AAFCO are more specific in that they cover the labeling name of a product, the guaranteed analysis, feeding directions.” (3)

Start with the ingredients the first two should be meat based. Often this is chicken meal, chicken digest, and/or chicken fat. These seem like a great start until you learn that chicken meal is “rendered from mammal tissues which could also contain parts of the animal you wouldn’t think of as meat. “ (1)

Chicken digest basically is stock. Like you use to create some soups, dressings, gravies. It gives the food some flavor but doesn’t have any chicken. Chicken fat is self-explanatory.

With ferret food chicken or any fowl is a good start and won’t often lead to a heavier musky scent like foods that have herring or any fish as the main ingredient.

Another ingredient to look for is Brewers’ yeast. This natural supplement is added to most processed ferret foods and because of its blood sugar lowering properties could be problematic to a ferret with Insulinoma (4)

Learning about what goes into your ferret’s food will help you pick the best diet for them and it will help them to live longer and healthier lives.

(1) Ingredient list 3rd par
(2) FDA 1st par
(3) AFFCO 1st par
(4) Brewers’ Yeast

Have a Chittering Good Day,


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Featured Ferret: Pudge

Hi! My name iz Pudge Petfinder

Iz hanging out in da shredded paper bin of da Kansas humane Society of Wichita, KS until Iz find da perfect pet hooman.
One who would love to have ferret kisses and cuddles. If youz know of a great hooman needing owned please directed dem to me.

Need more info about me den just drop a line to diz place via .

Fank youz.

Disclosure: I receive no compensation for featuring ferrets on my blog other than the hope that someone will give these fun, furry little springs a wonderful home.

Have a Chittering Good Day


P.S. would you nominate us for a Shorty Award only need to do once thank you.

Nominate Manny-n- Marcuz for a social media award in the Shorty Awards!

Wordless Wednesday: Really Hooman?!


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Pet Blogger’s Challenge 2012

This is our first time in taking part of this challenge hosted by Go Pet Friendly and Will My Dog Hate Me This challenge is to help focus where we want to go in the coming year.

1. When did you begin your blog?

June of 2009

2. What was your original purpose for starting a blog?

To help others understand ferrets and help new or prospective owners understand what having a ferret entailed.

3. Is your current purpose the same?

Yes but it is a lot more in depth that I originally had it.

If so, how do you feel you’ve met your goals?

I hadn’t set any kind of goals really with my blog. But I do feel that it has helped some people learn more about ferrets.

4. Do you blog on a schedule or as the spirit moves you?

I try to blog on a schedule but sometimes life gets in the way.
If the former, how often — and what techniques do you use to stick to it?

I am trying to blog Monday thru Friday. By only having two informational posts, two featured ferret posts, and the wordless Wednesday posts I have found that I am able to keep up with my posting schedule.

5. Are you generating income from your blog?

Not at this time.

If not currently, do you hope to in the future — and how? I have mixed thoughts on this. While I would like to have an income from my blog I don’t want to fill it up with a bunch of ads either. I want to put the ads where I want on my blog and not where someone else dictates.

6. What do you like most about blogging in general and your blog in particular (bragging is good!)?

I like doing the research into some of the more unusual aspects of owning a ferret. One of my favorite posts is about heartworms. While it is a horrible parasite it was interesting to find that ferrets can be affected by them. If that post helps just one pet owner then I am happy.

7. What do you like least?

Trying to do the hmtl on blogger. The program I used to use doesn’t work anymore with my new laptop so have to do all my posts by hand.

8. How do you see your blog changing/growing in 2012?

By gaining more followers and getting the attention of sponsors and other companies looking to get some face time.

I also see Enlightened Ferret being at BlogPaws and Bark World Expo this year.
I would love to do some interviews with people that have dealt with the different aspects of ferrets.

I would also like to see Manny and Marcuz’ facebook page Enlightened Ferret Travels gain in popularity and maybe even attract the notice of a travel related company willing to have ferrets as their spokes pet.

Have a Chittering Good Day,


Monday, January 9, 2012

Featured Ferrets: Bacon, Stewie, and Kramer

Hello I am Bacon Petfinder
I am a girl and No! I am not for nomming on!

These are my brofurs StewiePetfinder

Petfinder and Kramer he’s a couch potato and loves to watch television while on your lap.

We had a great family but because of some unforeseen problems they couldn’t keep us.

So we are hanging here at the Five Points Ferret Refuge in Indianapolis, IN hoping to find a new forever home. We would all like to go to the same place if it is at all possible.

Are you are new pet hooman? Or do you know of someone looking for a small business? Come check us out.

No I don’t smell like bacon either!

Disclosure: I receive no compensation for featuring ferrets on my blog other than the hope that someone will give these fun, furry little springs a wonderful home.

Have a Chittering Good Day


P.S. would you nominate us for a Shorty Award only need to do once thank you.
Nominate Manny-n- Marcuz for a social media award in the Shorty Awards!

Ferret Housing

There are two ways of keeping a ferret in your home. Free Roam or Caged. Both ways work depending on the depth of ferret proofing you want to do and if there are, other factors involved.

While I would love to let my boys be free roamers it isn’t practical because where we live is an old house with lots of little nooks and crannies that could allow a curious ferret out into the big wide world without being seen.

I live with Judy my roommate and her bloodhound Trixie. Trixie and the boys play well together with close supervision and my boys are kept on their leashes to prevent Trixie from going from playing to hunter in the blink of an eye.

For this reason, they only get to play together for about 10 minutes before Trixie is taken out of the room to roam the rest of the house and the boys can be let off their leash to have full access to the playroom that gets ferret proofed every month.

So my boys are caged when they are not out for their scheduled playtime, which they get twice a day for about an hour or two depending on my own schedule.

Ferret cages can range from the very basic single level Photobucket to the very elaborate Ferret Mansions.

My boy’s home is a large dog crate with their bed hanging in one corner and the litter box in the other. Photobucket I have also opted for the inside water bowl that attaches to the bars to keep Trixie from eating the water bottles. PhotobucketTheir food goes into a ceramic crock that is heavy enough to keep it from easily being dumped but doesn’t have a lip to prevent Manny from digging out that one perfect piece.

Because Marcuz likes to use either corner of the litter box side: I have newspaper put down for easy clean up.

While some people believe ferrets to be dirty little creatures they actually are quiet adamant about where they eat, sleep, and poop.

If the litter box has more poop than they think it should they will not use it. The boy’s litter box is scooped daily and completely changed weekly unless they have been sick and it needs changed sooner.

Their cage is cleaned and spruced up weekly as well but for those who know human bachelors the same goes for male ferrets.

Just minus the pizza boxes and empty beer bottles. Not that I wouldn’t put it passed a ferret to have either in his/her hidey-hole.

What kind of home does your pet have?

Have a Chittering Good Day,


P.S. Please help us earn a blogger Shorty Award. You can vote once until February 17th.

Nominate Manny-n- Marcuz for a social media award in the Shorty Awards!


Thank You for your support.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Domesticated Ferrets vs. Wild Ferrets

I am often asked how pet ferrets differ from wild ferrets.

First this is a misconception and I am sure it comes from the term exotic which clumps all unusual pets into this category.

Second there is only one true wild ferret and that is the Black-footed Ferret and while the Black-Footed Ferret belongs to the Mustelidea group the sub species is nigripes.

The Black-Footed Ferret is an endangered species in North America. Ferrets that live in New Zealand are believed to be a hybrid of ferrets and polecats that were cross bred before their release in the late 1800’s to control the rabbits that had previously been imported to New Zealand and once the rabbit population was controlled these hybrids then looked for other prey which was New Zealand’s flightless birds that had no predators. For this reason ferrets are banned in New Zealand.

Domesticated ferrets love to play. They are inquisitive and will check out anything that has captured their attention. Like cats they love things that move, crinkle, rattle, and roll. Boxes, plastic bags, newspapers, balls, and baby rattles make exciting toys along with anything that might have a feather attached.

Like cats and dogs, some ferrets hate the vacuum and will run away from others will attack it or any other machine that makes a similar noise.

What else would you like to know about ferrets?

Have a Chittering Good Day,

P.S. Would you please nominate us to win a Shorty Award Thank You.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thursday's Featured Ferrets

Petfinder Hello, I am Vlad ferret and this lovely lady is my sister VixenPetfinder

We are here at Five Points Ferret Refuge in Indianapolis, IN looking for the right forever home.

The right forever home will have lots of playtime, play space, toys, and treats. The right pet hooman will know how to love us and spoil us accordingly. In return we will dance, and make our new pet hooman giggle and smile.

Disclosure: I receive no compensation for featuring ferrets on my blog other than the hope that someone will give these fun, furry little springs a wonderful home.

Have a Chittering Good Day


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Featured Ferrets: Dante and Nero

Petfinder Hi I am Dante and this is my brofur Nero Petfinder
We are hanging out at the Western PA Humane shelter in Pittsburgh, Pa while looking for a forever home.

We are loving and gentle and love playing and snuggling together. The fine people here at the shelter think we are the cutest love bugs and would love to see us get adopted. Are you are new pet hooman?

Our adoption fee is a hundred dollars and something called tacks that doesn’t sound very fun but the hoomans here say they have to charge it.

Disclosure: I receive no compensation for featuring ferrets on my blog other than the hope that someone will give these fun, furry little springs a wonderful home.

Have a Chittering Good Day


Monday, January 2, 2012

A Brief Review of Ferret Information

This being a brand new year and Enlightened Ferret has gained some new followers. Because we don’t often have the time in our busy lives to start at the beginning of something but jump in and work our way forward I’ve decided that I will be making some posts that are in a way just a review of older posts that were part of the beginning of Enlightened Ferret.

Ferrets are part of the Mustelidae family this includes the weasel, mink, and otter. Mustelidaes are not rodents. The easiest way to determine the difference is by the teeth. Rodents have chisel teeth and Mustelidaes have feline like teeth.


The ferret is listed as the species Mustelidae putorius furo which is Latin and translates into stinky little thief a very accurate name.

The classification of ferret is that of domestic exotic giving many: the misconception that ferrets are wild animals. They are not. Ferrets have been domesticated for over 3000 years but because ferrets are considered an unusual pet, so they fall within the term of exotic.

Ferrets were/are used to hunt rats and rabbits. The USDA used ferrets in this manner until the late 1930’s to rid farms of unwanted rodents. Ferrets have also had other jobs such as running wire in buildings until the early 1950’s. They have been in movies such as Beast Master, Space Buddies, and Ink Heart. They also helped to run cables for the cameras at Princess Dianna’s Wedding.

Ferrets are illegal in New Zealand, Hawaii, California, and on many military bases.

Ferrets can get/give the common cold from/to humans. Because of this, they have been used for research that led to the development of the flu vaccine.

Ferrets became popular pets during the 1980’s and are now the third most owned pet in the United States after dogs and cats.

Ferrets come in a variety of colors. Sable, Cinnamon, Champagne, Silver mitt, chocolate, and Albino are the most common colors.


Other coat patterns such as Panda, Blaze, Marked White, and Dark Eye Whites, are distinctive and have a 75% chance of being deaf from a genetic mutation called Waadenburg’s Syndrome.

Ferrets can be trained to use the litter box, walk on leash, and do some tricks with some treats and a lot of patience.

Ferrets are the perpetual two-year old and kitten wrapped up into one very small package.

Unaltered females are called Jills and males are Hobs. Fixed females are Sprites and Males are Gibs.

Female ferrets can weigh about 3 lbs and males up to five.

A ferret can get his/her head through a one-inch hole and his/her body will follow it.

Many of these facts will be written about in the future or at the very least referenced back to an existing post.

Disclosure: The pictures in this post have come from different sites and if you click on them will take you to the site itself.

Happy New Year and have a Chittering Good Day,