June 19, 2013

In the Chicken Coop

I know that egg production will go down when the summer heat sets in. Right now I'm collecting an average of four eggs daily, three brown and one green. I have three brown egg layers and two hens that lay green eggs. The "Easter eggers" are the oldest hens in the coop, and they don't lay every day. I don't know if one is laying almost every day, or if they are both laying occasionally, but I've gathered two green eggs in the same day only once or twice this year. Judging by the size, shape and color, my guess is that only one of the hens is laying most of the time.

Samson the rooster, and Flower

Last week I found a tiny green egg among the brown ones. These are often called "wind eggs". The first egg that young pullets lay are often small like this, but this was from one of my oldest hens. I found some info about these little eggs on the Granny Miller blog.


One hen is laying large brown eggs that are darker than the others, a rich golden brown. The eggs are so big that they don't fit well into the cardboard egg cartons I use. I thought these might belong to the one-and-only cuckoo marans, which are supposed to lay very dark brown eggs, almost chocolate colored, but I know that she is laying the rosy-brown eggs. How do I know that? I practically caught one as it was dropped in the nest the other day.



Another is laying brown eggs with speckles on them.


My Easter egger hens (I call them "my green hens") are almost eight years old. I've wondered how long chickens live, something that isn't easy to find out since most hens are butchered when their production slows down. Other than a few references that say hens can "live for years", I finally found a post on the My Pet Chicken site that states "it's common for a hen in a backyard setting to live 8-10 years, but we've also heard reports of chickens living as many as 20 years."

Nemo

Flower and Nemo, my green hens, have sure had a long and good life, with hopefully many more years ahead of them. They were hatched when our granddaughter visited us for the first time here, shortly after we moved to Oak Hill, when she was two years old. Nemo is "her" hen. Nemo and Flower will live out their days in chicken comfort in my henhouse.



This post has been shared at the following:
Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways
The HomeAcre Hop
From the Farm Blog Hop
Homestead Barn Hop
 Please visit my Blog Hops page for the links



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7 comments:

  1. Wow, it's amazing that your Easter Eggers are almost eight years old! My first chickens are just about to turn four and I hope they live much longer. Your eggs are gorgeous and I love the tiny green egg. I get those occasionally from my white leghorn :)

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  2. Thank you, Tammi. For a couple of years I raised buff orpingtons, but now I'm enjoying the variety I have in my chicken coop in both the birds and the eggs. :-)

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  3. I swear I will never outgrow my awe of chicken eggs. The variety and detail is just so spectacular.

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  4. That's neat! We built a chicken coop this spring and we are just waiting to fill it. We still aren't decided on what kind of chickens to get, but I would like to have brown eggs.

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  5. Backyard Chicken Lady, aren't eggs a wonderful thing? A morning's collection of eggs, in all colors and shapes and sizes, is something I think is beautiful.

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  6. Tammy, there are so many chicken breeds that it's hard to choose! I've never had a white egg layer. :-)

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  7. Your eggs are beautiful. Thank you for linking to the HomeAcre Hop. I hope to see you back this week: http://everythinghomewithcarol.com/the-self-sufficient-homeacre-hop-5/

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