Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Chickens: The Hens Are Laying
Last year was a hard year for chickens at Creekside Cottage. We had always let them free range with little issues. Their coop was in the horse pasture near the barn and we had no predators. Then this last spring through summer we started to lose one chicken here, and one there, and realized that we had a hawk visiting regularly.
We could here his call and see him circling. We knew that he'd been finding meals here. We had our new chicks and when they were old enough to leave the brooder we set them up in the enclosed dog run with a small coop and our two remaining hens. One Sunday morning we came out of the house to leave for church and their sitting on the top of the dog run (the top is enclosed in fencing too) was the hawk looking down at all the tasty young chicks that he could not get too!
We decided to leave them all in the dog run until he didn't visit anymore.
The chicks were so cute.
And grew into beautiful hens and two roosters.
We moved them all to the big coop near the barn recently. They are doing well there and like the protection from the weather that the barn affords.
They are happy and contented and laying now.
Three different breeds of chickens are represented here - Australorp, Chocin, and Speckled Sussex. We can't wait until the Marans start laying, their eggs are chocolate colored!
Very exciting to be getting our own eggs again!