Thursday, March 31, 2016

Chicken Updates

It's been a while since I did a real chicken-centered post.   Our chicks have developed into 5 pullets and 3 cockerels, and we have the one old hen, which Malachi is holding.  Two of the cockerels are slated for the table soon.  They really only got a stay of execution because of having guests to focus on the last two weekends.  I don't think my sister and her girls would be visiting again if we harvested chickens in front of them!  And of course this past weekend, we celebrated Easter and had my inlaws here.  So the two cockerels that we have decided to eat soon gained a few extra weeks of life.  They definitely have to go soon, though, because the two of them are fighting over mounting the hens, and we don't want our hens getting hurt.

Here the chickens are enjoying the third yard.  The tree in the foreground is our peach tree - starting to bloom.  I do have hopes for peaches this year.  The chickens don't get to enjoy this yard as much as I'd like.  Since we've had so many problems with neighbor dogs, we only let them into this yard when some of us are outside, which means that gray, rainy days like today keep them from enjoying the fresh clovers and etc of this green yard.  I actually plant clover in this yard every year, because the chickens love it, and they eat it up.

All 5 of our pullets are laying eggs regularly.  We are thrilled to now be getting eggs every day.  We are averaging about 3 a day, and we expect that we will generally be getting 4 a day soon, once all of the new layers get regular.  Finally, I can depend on fresh eggs again!  We have tentative plans to buy more chicks next week (our spring break), because we would like a bigger flock and because I had told the kids we could get chicks this spring.  Plus, who am I kidding, I'm a sucker for more chicks.  I plan on getting straight runs so we get more roosters to eat, as well.  I've also toyed with the idea of getting some meat chickens.  The kids all love to eat chicken, and I can't really bring myself to buy factory farmed chicken meat, so we need to raise some more.

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