Farm Fowl: Omnifarious Olive Eggers

Having raised both purebred and mixed breed poultry, I’ve seen the benefits of genetic diversity, such as heterosis (also known as “hybrid vigor”). When we crossed Easter Eggers that laid blue-green eggs with French Black Copper Marans roosters, we expected that the pullets would eventually lay olive eggs…and they did. And these girls turned out be some of the nicest birds we’ve raised to date.

Continue reading “Farm Fowl: Omnifarious Olive Eggers”

Haiku: Watching And Waiting

Our laying flock must see us as egg thieves: each day – multiple times a day if it’s especially cold out – we collect their freshly-laid eggs. If a hen is sitting, we reach under her fluffy feathers and feel around for eggs – a treasure hunt, of sorts. Most of the girls in nest boxes enter a trance-like state, which I like to call “the zone”, and they don’t even seem to realize that an egg thief is there to take their eggs – they don’t move, protest, or do anything but remain blissfully docile. Most.

Continue reading “Haiku: Watching And Waiting”

Post-Hatch Recap: 2021 Shipped Eggs

Off to a bad start

2021 was a bad – no, terrible – year for shipped hatching eggs. What, just a few years ago, may have been decent to good hatches, were, this year, either complete busts or very difficult hatches that resulted in only single hatchlings or a few struggling chicks; accordingly, I’m anointing 2021 the Year of the USPS Great Egg Delivery Debacle.

Continue reading “Post-Hatch Recap: 2021 Shipped Eggs”

Farm Fowl: Beatrix’s Bedeviling Bumble

I ❤️ fermented feed

This sassy red hen is Beatrix. While she’s generally a healthy girl, she developed an infection called bumblefoot. I’ve seen it just a couple of times in the many birds we’ve raised and it can range from minor to serious (as in Beatrix’s case). If you raise chickens, it’s important to know what to do when you see the signs of bumblefoot so that you can take action to keep your birds healthy.

Continue reading “Farm Fowl: Beatrix’s Bedeviling Bumble”

Update: Lavender Ameraucana Hatch #3

All alone in the hatcher…

It’s been busy around here with all the incubation-related activity, and I admit to having skipped an update with the results of the second candling of the two remaining eggs from this severely shipping-damaged group. After ending up with only 2 eggs (of 13) developing after the first candling, I didn’t have high hopes of having any eggs make it to lockdown. But one did.

Continue reading “Update: Lavender Ameraucana Hatch #3”

In The Incubator: Lavender Ameraucana Hatch #3

Not broken, but still damaged…

After receiving the shipped eggs for Lavender Ameraucana hatch #2, I knew the odds were against getting chicks to hatch from that terribly damaged group…and it seems I was right. Being determined to build a flock of these lovely birds, I had already ordered another set of hatching eggs from the same breeder and this year’s hopes rest squarely on group #3.

Continue reading “In The Incubator: Lavender Ameraucana Hatch #3”