My hens love this time of year. Lots of chickweed to eat, all the compost, thinnings, weeds, grubs and other things chickens love. They are an important part of our family and I’m proud to offer them a good life.
it definitely shows in their eggs! in the off season i give them extra treats , leafy greens from the store and egglayer supplements. in the summer i have a large patch of dandelion i cut for them. i can’t free range here because all of the predators. i also give them worms from my bins and tropical cockroaches i grow just for them. fun to watch them run them down. my parents always had chickens but over the years we had just about every domestic bird known at one time or another.
Last year I went out to my chicken coop late one morning after I heard one of the hens making a racket. The hen was just coming out of the nesting boxes so I looked in to see what her squaking was all about and to my suprise I found this
The smaller egg would be considered an extra large egg since it would not fit in a large egg carton. I was laughing to myself trying to figure out if the hen was either very proud of herself or very relieved.
Hatch that egg and it will turn out a dinosaur.
I’ve hatched about 200 chicks this year and culled down to about 40 remaining. Extra chicks were given away. My objective is to wind up with about 20 decent colored hens for next year’s round of breeding.
I will start another round in the incubator in a couple of weeks.
I’ve joined the club, and I couldn’t be happier!!! I have been waiting for a few years to get these little ladies. I’ve been waiting because my husband has kept putting off building the coop. I just decided to get them, and let that light a little fire under his behind. Or maybe I will end up having to do it myself. Wait, did I just light a fire under my OWN behind? Shoot. Either way, it’s going to get done now because it has to.
I got Salmon Faverolles, a French variety that is supposed to be very cold hardy and is known to continue laying all winter long. They have feathered feet and an extra toe, like silkies. They are also supposed to be docile and good with children. Some people say they are too docile, aka dumb. We will see.
Also, @roth2000, is your bird still making monster eggs, or did those things kill her?? Geez! I knew a hen who layed eggs with wavy shells, which far as I know would win in the weird category, but yours takes the cake for biggest size.
Congrats Katie, enjoy the new endeavor. Our family loves our chickens and you can’t beat the eggs.
I bought 5 Cornish Crosses two weeks ago with the plan to raise them indoors for a month, outdoors for a month, then slaughter them for winter. Going well so far.
Wow that’s a fast growth rate!
Yes it is. They are bred for that reason and should make a nice meaty chicken. We’ll see.
i added 4 iso browns to my flock in may. they started to lay in aug. nice big chocolate colored eggs. the hens are a pretty bird as well. mix of R.I red and white. they are one of the best laying breeds next to the leghorns. faverollies are a neat looking bird with their beards.
We had Americaunas, Rhode Island Reds, Dark Cornish, Leghorns. We had problems with roosters for years. One of our sons has a scar less then a half inch under his eye from a cornish rooster that was dinner that very night. We also had one draw blood on the back of our little girl through four layers of winter clothes. We have had zero problems since we started raising game birds and have game roosters. The people that fight birds always eliminated man fighters. The result is birds that are bird aggressive, I have seen hens go into the air to meet hawks, but they are people friendly.
Some breeds just aren’t worth the risk to children for us.
i have 2 scars on the back of my leg where a rooster came from behind and nailed me good! took 3 months for them to heal! he made the mistake of coming back to strike again and got his neck broke! roosters can be nasty! i have only one now and he’s friendly and not aggressive. he warns the girls when predators are around . otherwise he’d be in the stew pot!
what breed was that hen? i had R.I Reds that would occasionally put out big double yokers like that.
The largest chicken egg I’ve ever seen had 5 yolks. It was from a chicken house that a neighbor had with commercial laying hens. If you know how big a goose egg can be, that 5 yolker was half again larger.
I lost Bobblehead a few months ago. There was no particular warning, just found him in the pen dead. I put a new rooster in the next day.
I gave away some of my laying hens and will give away a few more over the next few months. The plan is to replace them with young birds next spring.
Anyone in cold climate insulate the coop? I know some people like to hang a heat lamp but I’d like to avoid the fire hazzard, if possible
im a zone colder than you and my coop is not only uninsulated but the eaves are open. my rooster gets a little frost bite on the tips of his comb but besides that they have come thru -30f unscathed. most of my birds are cold hardy breeds but i have 3 skinny leghorns and several bantams that do just fine as well. i give them extra carbs and protein in winter to help them stay warm. key is to keep the coop as bone dry as possible with good circulation but also protection from the direct wind. humidity kills in the winter.
You know, I’ve read that before, that they can take those temps, but i just keep doubting it!! I’m not sure why…maybe I just feel bad for the birds. I probably shouldn’t bother making extra work for myself by insulating though. It helps to hear it from someone on growing fruit rather than some other random forum though.
What do you give them as extra carbs and protein?
cracked corn/scratch, and cooked rice/ potatoes for real cold mornings.