My Girls

Nope, not daughters. My chickens! Actually, we have boys (roosters)  AND girls (hens).  We have about 35 adults, and in the last 3 weeks, hatched 6 babies under two mamas. And I have another hen who "went broody" (that means she decided she wanted to hatch some eggs and started sitting on anything remotely shaped like an egg: rock, plastic easter egg, clump of dirt, etc).... she has 3 eggs under her in the garage.

Just stopping here to give a little more info: a girl chicken does NOT need a boy chicken to lay eggs. Think of our human bodies: we don't need men to ovulate.  HOWEVER, the boy chicken IS necessary to make fertilized eggs for the girls to hatch.  Roosters do not have external genitalia but I won't get into details here. Suffice it to say that the roosters mate with hens by climbing on their backs. It lasts for about 2 seconds. Then the eggs laid over the next 4 days are fertilized by that roosters.  All of our girls have one rooster on them (a ratio of 1:8-10 is good).

During the winter, we averaged about 4-8 eggs a day. Chickens don't like to lay  much in the winter. Something to do with shorter days, less light, and a kind of hibernation. But now that the weather is super-warm and the days are lenghthening, we're getting a dozen or more eggs a day. Soon, we'll be getting 24 or more eggs a day.

We don't eat all of them. Some people Hubby works with buys a dozen a week or so. Some people get some from us to hatch. I also scramble them with lots of other things (oats, grits, spinach, garlic, etc) to feed back to the chickens.  But yes, we eat the eggs too. I'm never out of eggs ... and I really do make a lot of quiches (easy breakfasts).

So ... when I talk about eating eggs, you know they are from our own girls. Our beautiful chickens, who run up to greet me, and beg for scraps of food we save for them. Who scratch our garden, eat bad bugs and till the earth. Who growl at us when they are broody and we want their eggs to eat anyway. Who coo as they drop off to sleep in their safe houses. Who crow loudly, NIGHT and day ... any time the rooster feels the least bit threatened or just to talk to any other rooster within hearing distance.

Yep, I love my chickens. Soooo worth the work.  Even in the winter.

2 comments:

Really Rosiem said...

I'm loving the positive attitude! New year, spring, garden - and now the "girls" ... all good stuff!

Vee and the Kid said...

Working on it. Thanks for the support!