Thursday, July 30, 2009

All the hens at 17 weeks

I took these last night.

In the one photo you can see the three nesting dens.
Empty and soon to be full of eggs soon! Well, I hope. ;)

One picture is of the coop with the 4 hens and the other picture is Sookies blue/gray den and her area.

Sookie (yellow like Ronald Reagan) is in the garden area fenced in outside
Betty is a mix of red and black
Jimmy has a red head
Barb has a black head
Ronald Reagan is yellow

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

How to Pick Fresh Eggs: Consumer Reports

Just found this article in Consumer Reports on How to Pick Fresh Eggs.

Lonely Chicken?

So this morning, I went out to check on Sookie.
She was just standing in the rain. 
;( This makes me sad.
I felt her crop and it has food in it, but it should be fuller. She's not eating enough. I think she may be stressed out. 
Sooooo, I think I may put Jimmy in there with her. 
She's the smallest of the beasts, besides Sookie. 
I was reading that doing something like this may be the best bet. 
To be continued.


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The coop

This is where they live!
I bought the coop online at Green Chicken Coop.

Sookie, our tame chicken

Sookie is pretty tame. I guess she better be, since we nursed her back to health... $250 bucks later! Hopefully she will lay some golden eggs.

All the chickens are due to start laying this weekend. SO EXCITED!
Can't wait for our first organic fresh eggs!

Will Sookie be accepted back into the flock?

Sookie was out sick.
So this is the story.
One day, (about 3 weeks ago) I was out in the yard and found Sookie in the coop, immobile and panting on the grass.

I grabbed our pet taxi and rushed her to the Avain vet (the bird doctor).

There we met with Dr. Mohan. See picture.

The vet weighed her. Asked how old she was (3 months) and said that a bird her age should weigh closer to 3 pounds. Well, Sookie weighed less than a half pound. Yikes!

He did some throat cultures on her.  
Checked her crop and said that it had SOME food in it but she felt VERY ill.

He gave her all kinds of shots and medicine. He gave us shots to give her, drops to give her and a feeding tube with food to mash up and give her. WOW.

$250.00 later, we got home and placed her in a box in the house with a heat lamp and just prayed that she would pull through.

We woke up the next morning and she was laying flat with her head in her water dish. Oh no. Not a good sign. Her feet were paralyzed also. Which is common in sick birds.

My husband thought we should stop her suffering and put her out of her misery. She looked just about dead. TERRIBLE.

But, we figured, we got the meds and stuff... let's go to work and see how she is when we get home.

We got home. She had her head up. SWEET! AND, she took her meds, ate some cucumber bits and looked a tad bit more alive.

So we waited. Went to bed. Got up and she was sitting up a little better. She drank water and ate food... and we pumped food into her stomach the night before, gave her her shots and meds.

As days passed, Sookie began to get better, slowly but everyday was better.

The results came back and she had a bacteria in her throat. Klebsiella.

I called the doctor, asked when she would stand up. And he said, if she's eating and drinking, she will stand soon. Just keep her from the rest of the flock for a couple weeks.

Sooooo, Sookie is all better. I will post a picture of her. She's become very tame and pet-like. However, when we introduced her back to the flock, her sisters, they did NOT accept her. We tried to put her in at night like I have been reading about... but no luck. Barb is a bitch and Ronald Reagan teams up to peck at her.

The pecking order is in full order.

So today, Sookie is hanging out in my fenced in garden. We will see how she does there for now.

Yeah Sookie!

Friday, July 24, 2009

"Henbag" chicken purse

Check this out!

Have you heard about the chicken purse that's causing a ruckus amongst fashionistas? This is it! Just google "hen bag" or "chicken purse" and see for yourself. Blog posts and opinions abound. One thing's for sure: it makes a statement! 

Friday, July 10, 2009

Today is the day I start a blog about my peeps

So yeah, I have 5 laying hens:

Ronald Reagan

They are 3 months old.

I bought them from Meyer Hatchery:

They are Ameraucana Standard females. I paid $2.70 each.
They were sent to my house via UPS. Unreal, huh?

So I picked this breed for their temperment, egg color and well, they just seem to be an all around good egg laying bird for a hobby farmer like myself.

This is their description:
Colored Egg Layer. These birds are excellent layers and produce eggs that range from olive green to turquise blue. This hardy breed was developed in the U.S. in the 1970's using Araucana birds from South America. Like their eggs, they come in as assortment of colors. They are favored for their eggs, but are large enough to be used for meat. Average mature weight: roosters 5 lbs, hens 4 lbs.

So... let me get this blog thing set up before I start writing a ton of stuff already!