Livestock My chickens started laying their first eggs!!

ioujc

SILVER BULLET
As I went out to put the chickies to bed tonight, I saw that one of my girls had laid her first egg!!

This is the FLOCK's FIRST EGG!!

How exciting!! They were already sleeping and I didn't want to get them all stirred up, so I left it there for the night.
They are only 4 and a half months old~~~~AND it was a fairly large egg!

Oh my I will have to give them treats tomorrow!! I will give them some of the crushed pig fat that I made my "experimental lard" out of. They should enjoy that immensely!!

Crazy>>>I can hardly wait for tomorrow to feed them!!

I have raised them from baby day old chicks and they are very tame. They come to me and literally "ask" to be picked up and petted.
Everyday I gather some huge bundles of various green plants for them to eat. They LOVE the greens!! Their FAVORITE is mint!!

I have pretty much decimated the mint now, so this morning they got a gigantic bundle of ragweed! They ate it, but just don't like it like they do the mint>>>>but they all come rushing to the front of the pen when they see me coming with a big armful of greens on the way! I have a large pasture area but don't want to let them wander out there by themselves as I lost many chickens out there before>>>got lots of other critters out there too!!

Well, I need to get some sleep so I can go out and drink coffee with my girls when they wake up!!
 

ioujc

SILVER BULLET
WOW!! These girls mean BUSINESS!!! >>>>>There were THREE EGGS this morning!! Yippee!!

>>>>>>>>Yesterday I cooked up about 5 gallons of pork fat that was left from when I slaughtered my pigs. I was trying to make LARD to make pie crusts and pastries with it. I didn't know how to do it really and cooked it at too high a temperature, so it will not make the clear white lard you buy at the store.

I checked things AFTER I did it and found out how to REALLY do it on the internet.

NEXT TIME I will know and do it right!!

Anyway, I smashed out all the grease from the fat chunks after they had cooked, and it ended up being nice and brown>>>>which that can be added to stews and to fry with. But the REAL TREASURE was the crispy stuff left after I smashed all the liquid out, that was left for the animals!

The dogs enjoyed a lovely snack from grease I sprinkled on their food!!

This morning I took some out to the chickens to reward them for the eggs. OH MY GOSH!!! They ATTACKED it!! I took out the flat pieces of fat that I had squeezed the grease out of. It is still very greasy and also crispy. I have only seen them act that way one other time>>>>when I got them a watermelon. Talk about gonna have FAT AND SASSY GIRLS!! They are THE BOMB!!
 

Cardinal

Snark: a higher form of communication
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My orpingtons just demand treats. In fact, they will come up to the door and bitch at me if I'm late getting those treats to them.
And no eggs yet!
Thankfully my banties have been producing all summer.
 

ioujc

SILVER BULLET
WoW!! Just got two more eggs today!

Had them in a little bucket on the table and ran outside to get a package that was delivered.

Came back and one of my Great Pyrenees had the egg on the bed eating it!!

Bad DOG!! But they KNOW what's GOOD FOOD!!
 

Marie

Veteran Member
:worth:
Just kidding but I am really happy for you! I just moved my wireless fence so my kids have been free ranging again. And my pyrenees is having the opposite problem they are eating his food. But he doesn't seem to mind sharing.
 

Walrus Whisperer

Hope in chains...
Grow some comfrey for them. It's good for them!
I remember my 1st flock, 11 yrs ago. This yrs flock is the friendliest I've ever had. I squat in there or sit on the ramp and there's 1 or 2 that will jump up on my shoulders and at least 2 will have jostling fights on my lap. I have one who is very conflicted about being held, she wants me to hold/pet her, but it overwhelms her so it's short And sweet. I call her righty cause her enormous comb flops to the right, her sister is lefty. My neighbor brings his untreated mown grass for then, it shouldn't be too long as it can bind up their crop. At last count I think I have 28 or 27 gals, can never remember.
I should write a book.
 
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ioujc

SILVER BULLET
Walrus Whisperer Said:
My neighbor brings his untreated mown grass for then, it shouldn't be too long as it can bind up their crop.

WOW!!! THANK YOU!! I had NO idea!! I have been feeding all my chickies the long fescue that grows here~~~~I am SO VERY THANKFUL you told me this!!!

Yes>>>>you SHOULD write a book!! Again, thank you!

BTW>>>>I have 34 girls and at least 1 ROO.
 

ioujc

SILVER BULLET
I am now getting about 2 dozen eggs a day from my 36 hens>>>>I would say 37, but one is a rooster and he would be HIGHLY OFFENDED!!

Yes, there ARE snowflake chickens!!!

I must say, I never thought raising chickens could be this much fun!!

I have had chickens before, but they were not ones I raised from a day or two old. They were grown chickens that people gave me.
 

etdeb

Veteran Member
Mine a 8 months old and still no eggs. They are a mixed flock my previous flock started laying at 5 months
 

etdeb

Veteran Member
No, no power at the coop. I have had chickens for 4 years after adopting a flock in 2016 when owner moved. They were all layers already at almost 2 years of age. Only 1 of that flock ever went broody and hatched 1 or 2 checks until she passed away this spring when snake got into coop. By this time I was down to the original rooster and 2 of BEBE's daughters. we went thru the molt with no eggs and added 8 birds in May that hatched out in April. Two turned out to be roosters so now we have 3 roosters and 8 hens.
We search the 65' x 28' coop daily looking for eggs. They had a perfectly good roosting room that also has 2 laying boxes.
They have layer food, oyster shells fresh water couple time a week they get grubbies. Two cats share the area to control mice and snakes. They were getting the cats food but I fixed that last weekend.
I am in East Texas and thought maybe it was the heat but I am about to just label them as slackers.
 

ioujc

SILVER BULLET
I let mine free range. I read that having something green everyday is necessary. So, they have access to the entire 6 acres, but actually stay pretty close to the backyard. They have pretty much destroyed the grass, what little was left after the frost, and are now composting all the leaves.

I also give kitchen scraps as often as possible. I found ears of corn that were on big discount because they had gotten past prime at the store>>>>>8 ears for $1. Bought four bags of those and they TORE THEM UP!! Also cabbage was on sale and they LOVE cabbage!! I plan to grow a BUNCH this coming spring!!

Also am going to start giving them micro greens of various seeds that are able to be eaten>>>>not treated or anything. I think wacthing them gobble that up in the dead of winter should be lots of fun!!

I just can;t wait for spring!! I have two hens that are already trying to go broody>>>>one that sits on a nest she has built outside of the nest boxes. She is ALWAYS on it whenever I go in! Isn't this a strange time of year for one to go broody?? Especially since they are only 6 1/2 months old!!
 

summerthyme

Administrator
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Deb... if you buy one of these WARM white (important... birds don't register blue-white light) solar lights and install it, I'll bet you'll start getting eggs very shortly.

Your birds hit maturity just as the days were getting shorter, and they probably won't start laying naturally until March. I use one of those lights, and my Slow White layers started laying at 19 weeks, and my Americauna- Maran crosses started at 22 weeks.

Summerthyme
 

summerthyme

Administrator
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What brand is the light, I have a number of LED solar outdoor lights
Hmmm... I swore I linked to one! Sorry...

(Two points being you need light in the warm spectrum, and you *DON'T * want it on motion detection. You want a dusk to dawn sensor)

This looks similar/identical to the one I have installed. It doesn't give a ton of light... sort of a twilight in a 6'x10' coop. But it's plenty sufficient to the get them to lay all winter. And if you're feeding them, the least they can do is lay eggs!

Summerthyme
 

ioujc

SILVER BULLET
How exciting! May I ask what breed? I love my poultr!
Sorry, just now saw this!

I ordered a Barnyard Mix of chickens. I have several Rhode Island Reds and New Hampshires, 3 Speckled Sussex (one of which is a ROOSTER, which got snuck in because I ordered all hens), about 5 Marans, 4 Black Jersey Giants, 1 Plymouth Rock, 1 BEAUTIFUL light Braham, and a GIANT hen that looks like a Rhode Island Red, but she is as big as a small turkey!! She was HUGE when I got them and she has remained bigger than any of the rest of them!! She is even bigger than the rooster!! She is very friendly and loving and likes to be petted. Oh, and I also have an Americana>>>>which lays lovely BLUE eggs. I ordered all brown egg layers, but don't mind the blue eggs, they are very pretty. And she lays at least one every day.

I am still getting at least 2 dozen eggs a day!!

I don't know which breed laid the first eggs and they all share only 4 nests>>>>>although there are about 10 in the chicken house!! So, I don't know who is laying the most or the fewest. The Maran lays beautiful dark brown, almost a rose maroon colored egg and they are quite large. That is the one I do know!

It is weird>>>I am so proud of my birds!! My co-workers and friends think I am REALLY WEIRD!! And I kinda think I'm a bit weird too!! I have had chickens before, but never raised them from babies>>>guess it makes a difference!!

Also, some of the things I am doing include bright, LED light at night, always a source of high protein, always something green EVERYDAY>>>>cabbage is their favorite>>>always some kind of squash every week and lard and pig fat that I cook up with "treats" like rasins, peanuts of other Goodies in the fat. Also I give meal worms for treats about every other month. I am hopefully going to start growing some of my own of those. During the day I have been letting them out to free range during the day. They come in when I call them>>>>mostly, althought there are always 2 or 3 that I have to go catch, however by that time it is dark and they are easy to catch in the dark with a flashlight because they become very lethargic....
 

China Connection

TB Fanatic
I grow azolla for mine.

I've got 7 bantams out of my first sit. Two out of the current as heat got the rest that is in the egg stage. Currently I have some more eggs being sat on.

I sprout all my seed that I feed.
 
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Walrus Whisperer

Hope in chains...
Deb... if you buy one of these WARM white (important... birds don't register blue-white light) solar lights and install it, I'll bet you'll start getting eggs very shortly.

Your birds hit maturity just as the days were getting shorter, and they probably won't start laying naturally until March. I use one of those lights, and my Slow White layers started laying at 19 weeks, and my Americauna- Maran crosses started at 22 weeks.

Summerthyme
It just dawned on me the 200 string of Christmas lites in the coop are blue/white. Doh! Never knew that! Don't worry, I put in a reg bulb now, I couldn't even see in there with the xmas string s in there.
Ya learn something new everyday! I love this place!
 

China Connection

TB Fanatic
Well I now have another bantam sitting on eggs. Tried to move her yesterday but she took off on me as soon as I opened the box with the eggs in it. She got back on them in the evening in the main hen house. Probably try to more her again tomorrow.

I left the cover off my two chicks and their mother a few days back and it rained. Put the young chickens in the other mother while trying to sort things out. The two chicks went straight under the other mother like rockets. Not very selective that's is for sure. However the other three chicks are about a third their size. Asking for trouble if I was to leave them together.

My older 7 chickens attacked the two chickens mother. So I had to separate her with her babies into a another container.

Nothing is simple with chickens....
 
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