Brownie thinks she's a person!

Our seven laying hens are now 20 months old. We’ve not been getting any eggs from them for the past month. They’ve been molting and are only now starting to look presentable again. Their appetites have not been good. Because it’s hard on their bodies to make all those new feathers and produce eggs, they’ve been taking a much needed break from their egg laying. Thankfully, we have Brownie’s four pullets she hatched out in late June who are getting old enough to lay. They’re mostly Rhode Island Reds which usually start laying by 24-26 weeks. They are just over 22 weeks old now. We had a nice surprise Sunday and got our first pullet egg from them. There have been three eggs so far, one every other day probably from the same pullet. The pullets start out laying small eggs, but the eggs they produce will get bigger as they mature.

Two of my neighbors gave me roosters last summer. “Elvis” is a Rhode Island Red and the other, named “Red” is a “Red Star”. He’s a cross between a RIR and probably a White Rock. The hatcheries are secretive about the breeds they use and wouldn’t give me a straight answer so I don’t know for sure. So far, our two young roosters have been good to the hens. Our last rooster ended up in the Crock Pot after he savagely attacked Brownie last year. Brownie gets along well with both of the new roosters.

Little Dove with her Chicks

Little Dove with her Brown Chick

Our Banty, Little Dove, went broody again this fall and hatched out four more chicks. Her last batch turned out to be all roosters. Two of her present chicks are from Brownie’s eggs and two are from the New Hampshire hens. Bill built Little Dove a small chicken apartment a little bigger than a dog house so he could lock her and her babies up at night. We’ve had a few nights down into the 20’s and were glad she only has four chicks to keep warm. It has helped having a long Indian Summer too. The chicks are five weeks old in the picture. They’re six weeks old now and have most of their feathers. It’s been very cold here lately, but they’re all doing well. I love to watch them scratching around with their mother and taking dust baths.

My son Josh gave me his old digital camera so I’ve been taking lots of pictures with it. Now I can finally share some of my chicken pictures with you!