This blog is mainly a rambling kind of diary of the transition from smallholderwannabe to smallholder.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

My hens have gone into serious moulting mode.  Their runs and the area under their perches just look like somebody has emptied out a feather pillow there. Needless to say, the laying of eggs has dropped off equally dramatically.  They are laying less than half the quantity of eggs that we had just a couple of weeks ago.  Hens can either grow new feathers or lay eggs but not multitask although the younger hens still lay the occasional egg.  I doubt that I'll have any more eggs from the older hens before the spring now.

This has implications for my customers.  They are friends and not members of the general public so I can explain why they are getting 3 or 4 eggs instead of 6.  Last week, I just made it through to the end of the week with one egg left for us to share. Single people got one egg, couples got 4 and families got 6.  I've used those rules this week too but I'm not sure if there will be any over for us. 

My friend wanted some more hens at the same time we did, 18 months ago. So when we fetched ours, we fetched some for her at the same time to save paying carriage or petrol costs.  So our hens are "sisters".  My friend had an operation a few days ago and since she is off work and can't take her surplus eggs to her customer friends, I'm going to do us all a favour and have a few eggs from her.  This isn't exactly big business but my son is pulling my leg about mum "subcontracting". It does mean that there may be the odd egg left for us, though.  My husband complained this weekend that we do all the work and had that one egg to share but I don't want my customers to get back in the habit of buying eggs at the supermarket.  Come spring, we'll probably be overrun with eggs again although my oldest hens are unlikely to produce more than a token egg even then.

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  • At 3:40 AM, Blogger Kay said…

    How many chickens do you have? I'm seriously thinking about getting more chickens, I had some about 7 years ago but after they died I didn't get any more but come next spring, I'm thinking it will be time. That gives me plenty of time to find a cute chicken house :-)


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