Monday, December 7, 2015
More Chicken Drama Incoming!!!!
This maybe a mistake but I made a deal with an Amish guy up the road a bit and bought 10 ISA-Brown hens from him. The big chicken guys around here sell off their hens when they reach a year old because they say they stop producing as many eggs and they don't want to feed them all Winter. This means I can pick up some laying hens without having to worry about raising chicks myself, seeing if they are hens or roosters and all that jazz.
What's funny is I have three black sex-link hens that someone gave to me because they said they were only laying maybe once a week and I know they are laying at least every other day because I have finally gotten familiar enough with them to tell them apart. The 18 hens we have now of various breeds are leaving us an average of about 10 eggs a day and we are consistently getting 1 blue one each day now as well. Haven't lost a hen in months and the dog that did kill said hen now just watches the chickens walk by with a rather bored look on his face. I also have more than enough roost and coop-stall space so I thought why not?
I couldn't beat the price either. Got em for less than new chicks go for in the Spring around here.
We been keeping the feeder full and haven't even used 10 pounds of feed in the last two months. I am sure that will go up once it get's colder but for now adding the chickens onto the place has been a huge boon around here. Mouse damage to feed bags is now gone and I rarely see one running along the wall of the barn either. The bug population was also showing a marked decline even before Fall set in and the chickens seem happy just cleaning up after the sheep too.
Most of the hens we got initially were all kept up in poultry barns and once they finally got used to going outside and being free range hens they almost turned into completely different birds.
Anyway I can't really quarantine these new hens but I did up the antibiotics in the water and left the new girls locked in the coop-stall for the day. Most of the old hens and Rocky the rooster have already come by and been checking them out through the slats in the door. I gave them some corn and oats along with the regular chicken feed and I am hoping one day will be enough for them to realize this where they are suppose to roost. I will run the old flock in there tonight and then make sure I let em out early so there is no time for much fighting.
As I said more chicken drama is certainly incoming I imagine.
Rocky's little head has already exploded. Twenty eight hens and one over sized attentive rooster? What could possibly go wrong? I am betting I am going to find him laying feet up in the barn yard within the next day or two.
So now we will see how this thing shakes out and hope we don't pick up some illness with the new birds. If they act like the other hens I got from the large poultry barn life it will take them some time before get brave enough to leave the barn. Guess we will see.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!!!!