|The entire first day they were under house arrest to make sure they got to know their new home.|
I wrote to Yellow Brick Road Farm explaining the troubles I was having getting a hold of laying hens, and would they be willing to sell me a few so I could get started this spring and not have to wait until summer.
Thursday morning I got an email back from Jennifer saying she'd be happy to help. Thursday night our first flock were tucked safely in their new coop and I called to cancel the June order.
- The rooster is a barnyard mix we named Romeo Rex the First. He was second fiddle at his old place and now he's got his own little flock of ladies.
- The striped black and white hen is a BarredRock we named Jennifer after the lady who sold them.
- The black hen is a Black SexLink we named Issabella.
- The brown/red hen is a Red SexLink we named Henrietta.
- The white hen is a DeKaub we named Kelly because Hugslut once told me she wanted a "Kelogs looking chicken" and we know she's not a leghorn but white plus red comb is close enough.
|Our very first egg!|
They're all unknown/random ages but proven layers. We got our first egg from them the very next morning, but we have had a bit of trouble with breakage. One egg each day so far has been broken in the box. I'm not sure if it's a calcium issue with one bird or a problem with the nest box being too slippery. I put a crate pad down under the nesting materials for a bit of traction today so we'll see if that helps.
I'm happy to report that yes, Romeo yells his head off every morning crowing at the neighbours rooster and throughout the day occasionally just crows for fun... but it's not a harsh sound at all. With the doors and windows closed we hardly hear him inside, but even right up close it isn't jarring or unpleasant.
First two days I was out there 6+ times a day. Today I'm going to try to keep it to Morning, Midday, Night.
In the morning(as early as sunrise when possible) I need to let them out of their coop, refresh their water, and give them some food. I've been giving them 1/2 their pellets in the morning so they don't eat it all right away and get hungry later. I also give the coop a quick sweep while they're out eating.
In the middle of the day(usually right after lunch) I go out and give them more food including veggie scraps from the kitchen, and check for eggs.
At night(once they've gone inside but as close to sunset as possible) I need to go out and close up their coop so they're warm and safe overnight, as well as make a last check for eggs.
The rest of the visits were to check for eggs a million times, but also just to hang out with them and to get into the rhythm of the chicken life. (eg: first night I had no clue when they'd agree it was bed time)
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