Our chickens are 21 weeks old now and they started laying farm fresh eggs a little over a week ago! Not all of them are laying yet. The Rhode Island Reds produce a small, light beige egg and the Barred Plymouth Rock chickens produce a darker, larger brown egg. We are now getting both. We also have Americauna chickens that produce blue eggs. We have not found any blue eggs yet but it is still a bit early.
This morning, I went out to feed and water the checks and to check for some farm fresh eggs now that some of them are laying. No eggs...none at all! So I decided to do an experiment. I started checking in the late afternoon, once work is over. That is when I get a lot of eggs.
This afternoon, at 5:30pm, I got seven, the most I have ever found before (pictured at the top of the page below the headline). Four were together in one nest on the top shelf and the other three were each in a different top row nest. I have been reading that they should be checked around noon and again in the late afternoon. I don't always have time to go out at lunchtime to check. Also, the hens crowd around the door and try to come out. In fact, one escaped yesterday, but after I called her, she went back inside the coop. I hope we can build the new run soon. The girls, as well as the rooster, need a bit more room!
A dropped ceiling was started today in the seed building and it really looks good. Karen and I are changing the store set up and we are almost finished with it.
This evening, I received a message on social media from a customer who recently bought luffa gourd seeds from us. She said she has been told by friends that the luffa gourds are edible but our packaging says they are not. I did a bit of research and found that while the gourds are young and tender, you can eat them and they have a bit of a sweet flavor. But in a matter of just a few weeks, the luffa stops being tender and starts tasting horrible. Why take the chance?
So if you are wondering if you can eat something you grow in your garden that is meant to scrub your body, the answer for me is "NO". I planted some luffa gourds this fall. Mine will be for scrubbing, not eating.
This morning, I cracked the largest farm fresh egg I had from my flock and poured out the contents into my frying pan for breakfast. It was a double yoke! No doubt it was from one of the Barred Rocks since their eggs are a bit darker than the Rhode Island Reds. One of the yokes broke but the other did not. It took me a minute to realize I got my first double yoke!
I went out and fed and watered the chickens. I also checked for farm fresh eggs and there were none again so I have cracked the code. They lay in the mornings after they have been fed and in the afternoons, but not in the evening.
The dropped ceiling in the second building was completed today and it looks good and makes it cooler in there. Ceiling fans were put up for circulation. Now the people in the third building want ceiling fans for circulation so we will have to buy new ones. That building came with long ceiling fans that hung high on the unfinished ceiling, from the rafters. Those will no longer work!
At 5:30pm, I went out to the chicken coop and found another seven eggs! Most were darker. Four were larger and three were small so four Barred Rock hens and three Rhode Island Reds are laying.
Good Wednesday morning! Today, my chickens turn 22 weeks old. In about four weeks, all of my hens should be laying eggs. It is so exciting! No eggs again this morning. One of the Rhode Island Red hens was sitting in the top right nesting box when I fed them this morning. I opened the door for the chicks to come out and they all did except for her. She refused to come out. She sang two songs while sitting there so I thought she had laid an egg. Matthew came over and got her out of the nest. She did not lay an egg. She went back on the nest so I guess she is fixing to lay one...
This morning at 5:30am, I asked Alexa what the temperature was and it was 50° Fahrenheit. I got up and let the dogs out. The air felt so cool and sweet. After a summer of feeling like Hell is located next door to us, this wonderful weather is so great. It will hit a high of 88° today.
The riding lawn mower is broken again...Why? Because it is being driven all over the property when it is not cutting the grass. They need to walk to the bathroom and walk across the property instead of riding it and wasting gas. David will lay the law down when our second lawn guy starts work again on Monday...
So Nacho and his helper from Top Notch Lawn Care are here again to mow and get the place looking good since our lawn mower is busted again. Nacho just whizzed by the store riding a standing lawn mower. This thing is awesome. I want to get one!
David told me it is time for another newsletter to go out from David's Garden Seeds® so I will write that and send it soon. If you would like to receive it, go to David's Garden Seeds® and subscribe now! It is free.
After work, I checked on the chickens and their butt nuggets...LOL! I read this in one of my chicken books. The author used the term "butt nuggets" and I think it is hilarious. I only got five eggs today.
But did you see the moon this evening? One more day until the Full Harvest Moon. It was incredible. I noticed it when I went out a bit early to put the chickens away for the night.
After work, I took the chickens a bowl of watermelon and they were all against the door, trying to greet me and get out. The bowl (with my arm) was inside the coop but I was not yet and a Rhode Island Red flew up on my left arm holding the bowl and scratched and cut me. I guess she was just excited about the food. I finally managed to get in and gave them treats.
When I got inside the nesting box area, there were only six farm fresh eggs so they still are not all laying. Most eggs I get are fairly decent sized and a bit darker brown so those belong to the Barred Rock hens. I have eight but have never gotten eight of the same egg yet. Maybe they are all not laying yet. I get some smaller, lighter brown ones, which are from the Rhode Island Reds. I have seven of those hens, because one of them turned out to be a rooster.
I started out with eight Americauna hens on April 30. They are all different colors so I think I only have seven now. It is hard to count them because they all move around so much. I could still have eight, but the most I ever count is seven. If something happened, I have never found parts of a chicken body...Maybe someone let her escape. The Americaunas are supposed to lay blue eggs. I have not yet found a blue egg so they are not laying. They have two to four weeks to start laying according to my books and the other varieties are laying early.
This afternoon, after work, I was in the kitchen and saw what I think was a coyote to the right of us where the hay bales are. He was too far away to capture on my phone but he was not the right shape for a dog. When I told David, he told me it was very unlikely that I saw a coyote.
I kept waiting for the Full Harvest Moon to come up tonight. It finally came up as I was out putting the chickens away for the night again. It came up where the sun comes up, so big and pink. It was truly spectacular! I took photos but they did not do justice to the beauty God created. It made me pause and think just how good God is to us to share such beauty with us on a cool evening.
Happy Friday! I got outside to take care of the chickens around 7:20am this morning. It was a beautiful, cool morning and I appreciate the fact that there was no humidity to make me feel nasty. I got everything prepared for my chickens and then let them out. They were having a truly good time.
This morning, Matt found me and told me that at 6am, in the dark, he saw what he thought was a racoon coming out of our large trash dumpster when he was taking trash to it. Yes, Matt starts work early here each morning.
We are working on price changing on our website, which will be a job that will last several weeks. We have over 1600 line items now.
This afternoon, I found eight eggs in the nesting boxes! Even though most of the hens are still not laying, we have enough eggs to put us in the Farm Fresh Eggs Business! We are selling our farm fresh eggs for $5 a dozen which seems to be the going rate around here for them. So far, we have several shades of brown, but sometime within the next four weeks, we should have blue eggs, too! Americauna chicks lay blue eggs.
Come on by David's Garden Seeds® Farm Store for your farm fresh eggs.
Good Saturday morning! I made a big breakfast of french toast and scrambled farm fresh eggs and it was all delicious. This morning, we cleaned out the chicken coop again and transferred some of the composted chicken manure soil to our garden area. We will have wonderful sandy soil with composted chicken manure for our spring planting. Maybe we will bag some up and sell it in our Farm Store.
We shopped for groceries as well as animal things today. I had to go to two separate Tractor Supply stores to find grit for the chickens. The one in Devine had it.
We found seven farm fresh eggs this evening. One of the Barred Rock chickens, as well as the male guinea, decided they wanted to sleep in the run. Matthew, our son, should be named the bird whisperer. He came over and had them both in the nesting box area within a few minutes. They pulled this stunt last night as well.
Happy Sunday morning! Today, I used up the last of our store bought eggs. Hopefully, we don't ever have to buy them again...We are getting quite a few farm fresh eggs now and the amount will pick up as they all start laying this month.
It was a good day. After church, we got food from a brand new barbecue place in Poteet and it was pretty good.
This afternoon, David was talking to the neighbor who lives to the left. They had 12 chicks in a small pen, about three months younger than ours. Friday, a racoon took out six of them. So sad but yes, Matt did see a racoon. Then the neighbor told David he saw a coyote and he had photos so now David believes me. Vindication feels good, but I am sad about the loss of chicks.
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