Saturday, October 6, 2012

Pullet Surprise: My New Chickens

Since I've decided to get into the egg selling business, I needed a few younger chickens since most of my layers are on the old side. I didn't have much hope of finding laying hens at the swap, though. Or any hens at all--- I've noticed a lot more roosters for sale than hens. But I went anyway.

The first seller with some possibles had these two pullets (young hens) and wanted $5 each for them, which I thought was real reasonable. She then mentioned they were Araucanas--- well, Ameraucanas, anyway. I bought them both. (Ameraucanas and Araucanas are two breeds that lay blue-green eggs.)

Another seller had some Golden Campines which were pretty but not what I wanted. Then I noticed some birds in another of that seller's cages. He said they were Welsummers--- another breed I like, which lays dark brown eggs. He quoted a price of $5 a bird but gave me a deal for taking them all. These chickens also were from this year. I got a rooster in this group which is nice so I can hatch out replacements.

The pullets all went in the pen with the older laying hens. The Welsummer rooster, who I named Kellogg, got put in the pen with my poultry odds-and-ends. My Chocolate turkey, Imelda, took one look at Kellogg and fell in love.  (She's almost invisible behind a clump of weeds.)

Kellogg was a bit nervous to have such a large female interested in him, so he distracted himself with the grain pan. The girls, meanwhile, had to cope with sharing space with my really old Old English hen. Sadly, one of the pullets was doing poorly and died, but the others are adapting well to their new home, and when I went out at ten to turn off their light, I saw that all were inside the shelter of the calf hutch.

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