Friday, April 13, 2012

Renegade Pullet

Attention: Be on the lookout for an escaped pullet. Height: ~16", Weight: ~4 lbs, Feathers: (Rhode Island) Red, Eyes: Beady. Suspect has a history of escapes (this morning and this afternoon) and is believed to be searching for a private location in which to lay an egg. If spotted, approach with caution because she spooks easily. If caught please return to pullet pen.

So the pullets are really starting to lay. We are finding six or more eggs a day in the pullet pen. There are 94 hens in that group right now. Within a month we could be looking at six dozen or more eggs a day. Whoa!

One of our next big initiatives is constructing an "egg mobile" so we can move all of the pullets to the lower pasture and be able to easily move them every few days. We will build on the frame of an old single-wide trailer we bought a few weeks ago from a junk yard for very cheap. Although the interior decorating will not be much to talk about, it will still be quite an improvement from the chickens' current living quarters. Once the birds are more comfortable, they will be less likely to try to escape. We may also get our front yard back...

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


Well... I started the year with a goal of two posts a week between Chicken Mama and myself. Hopefully we can get back on-track with that.

Spring is here! And has been for a month. According to the weather records, we had one night below freezing during the month of March. We hit 80 degrees for the first time on the Ides of March. Virtually everything is blooming early: the pear tree finished blooming a long time ago, the apples are blooming, even the poplar seems to be getting ready. A freeze at this point of the season si going to devastate a lot of crops.

We have also been springing into action. The last two weeks have been pretty much non-stop:

  • Pruning all the fruit trees (a bit late, I know).
  • Planting new apples trees!
  • Fiddling with chickens, as usual.
  • Going to south Georgia to pick up bees for the Beekeeper's Assoc. and re-starting our hives here.
  • Desperately trying to get a proper feed bin built for the two tons of chicken feed that arrived a week ago.
  • Hopefully the broiler chickens will go out on pasture today because the next batch should arrive from the hatchery on Friday.
It is all starting to look good now that we are catching up on a few things. The farm will look even better once we get the next project finished: building a moveable "egg mobile" for the birds we've been raising since Thanksgiving. Sales have been slower than expected so we may have quite an abundance of eggs soon...

All of the work is fun, but it gets stressful when so many time-sensitive things are happening all at once. I was talking with a friend from Church about how I hope next year will be a little easier because of the work we're cramming in right now. He said, "No, it never gets easier. Next year you're going to want to add more (expand)." He's right.

There are two things I really look forward to: (1) seeing this farm in a few years and (2) resting on Sundays!