In late February, we had a string of bad luck as far as our animals were concerned. First was the rabbit... dead, in her cage, with no explanation (we have heard that rabbits have heart attacks easily). The next day began the steady decline in the numbers of our hens, who ended up getting completely picked off by raccoons in the matter of a couple of days. This was a huge disappointment, not only from the point-of-view of the chickens, but from the family who loved their eggs and their personalities... We were back at square one. Again.
We went back to getting eggs from our local egg-lady, which we were glad to have as a back-up, and discussing how we wanted to go about our next venture into chicken-keeping. When our friends, Barb & Morgan, told us that they would be downsizing their flock and wanted to sell off 7-10 birds who were rapidly approaching the laying stage, we jumped for joy. I was dreading brooding chicks all over again (feathers, dust, stink, and the vulnerability of the little buggers), but wasn't sold on the idea of buying hens from people I didn't know and being unsure of how they were raised and cared for. This was PERFECT!
Morgan brought the first 5 birds last week, and brought the last 5 yesterday. They are really beautiful--all buff colored, which we have never had before--7 Buff Orpingtons and 3 Auracanas.
The best news of the whole deal? We got 2 eggs this morning!!! This is my favorite part of chicken-keeping...the day one or two chickens start to lay, and the slow and steady count upwards. When we have too many chicken eggs for our family to consume, we have a list of customers ready to take the surplus off our hands... I don't think we can use 70 eggs a week... we'll ty our darndest, though!
Masterpiece aka: The Hot Stud at the UrbanHippie Farm
Our 2 brief "visits" have apparently not been successful (in terms of sperm going where no sperm's gone before), and so we have chosen a new path (and one that feels more romantic to me). We have brought the guy home and are letting him spending 6 quality weeks with our girls. He is learning their likes and dislikes, sharing their bed, and getting to know their family...doesn't that seem more appropriate, since he is going to be the father of their children?!?
He arrived on Wednesday, and I have not seen any signs of either girl being ready to receive yet...but I'll keep you posted.
In other news, it was a GLORIOUS spring day today!
We had our friends, Barb & Morgan, and their clan over--we played outside while Morgan pruned the pear tree and Rich prepared beds for planting. They even brought us full grown chickens that *just* started laying! So far they were able to bring 5: 1 auracana and 4 buff orpingtons, but they will be bringing out 5 more on Monday... 10 chickens?!? We are hoping they adjust nicely and are giving up their eggs in no time... we just can't live without our own eggs anymore. Happy Spring, readers!! I hope your first day of spring was as wonderful as ours.