Flocking around

Del has been released back into the general population after a stint in the brig for ungentlemanly conduct toward the ladies. It must have been an adolescent burst of hormones, because he seems to be settling down nicely. Look at the size difference between Del & Toshi!

Here’s Toshi showing how a real rooster does his job. He’s found some kind of yummy bug and is feeding it to Neil after calling her over with a special ‘come & get it’ sound. Hopefully Del is taking notes, since he hasn’t quite progressed to Toshi’s level of excellence yet.

Can you spot the fluffy Red Star hineys as they disappear into the depths of the berry patch? The flock has a regular route through the yard and they really look forward to their afternoons as groundskeepers. Egg production is starting to taper off with the length of daylight, but we plan ahead for that by stockpiling eggs in the fridge.

The American Egg Board says : “The oil coating which seals the shell’s pores helps to prevent bacteria from entering the egg and reduces moisture loss from the egg. RAW SHELL EGGS REFRIGERATED IN THEIR CARTONS WILL KEEP FOR ABOUT 4 TO 5 WEEKS BEYOND THE PACK DATE WITHOUT SIGNIFICANT QUALITY LOSS. (The pack date is usually a number from 1 to 365 representing the day of the year starting with January 1 as 1 and ending with December 31 as 365.)”
Imagine how much fresher our gals’ eggs are, coming right out from under the hen each day! One reason it’s so important to keep the nest boxes clean is that washing the eggs really shortens the keeping time. So the cleaner they come from the coop, the better, since we don’t wash them until it’s time to use them (if at all). Another thing about extemely fresh eggs is that they don’t peel well once they’re boiled. There is no air gap between egg white and membrane, so it sticks and peels very messily. So we have to remember to save some back to age a bit if we want decent hard-boiled eggs. And each hen lays different kinds of eggs. Some have thicker shells, some have thicker membranes, smooth shells, spotted shells, and so on. We can pretty much tell which hen laid what egg, with such a small flock.

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8 thoughts on “Flocking around”

  1. “Toshi is so cute, such a gentlecock, taking the ladies out to dinner…”But as usual, the gentleman has a hidden agenda…:)Beautiful roosters, can’t wait for the visuals of the offspring from either of them.

  2. I wonder if the $.60 increase in the price of my local eggs is because production dips in the winter..? No more local eggs for $3.00 a dozen, sadly.

  3. Unless you buy some for us at $2.50 a dozen… all organic feed and yard ranged. It’s when available is all… and tapering a bit as well right now.

  4. The main reason the cost of eggs and chicken and meat in general is going up is the grain bottleneck. Ethanol production is taking up corn like crazy, so the prices rise. Farmers are subsidized for growing biofuels, so they take land out of production that used to grow animal feed. Factor in the horrible droughts in many parts of the world, and you have a shortage of grains, which make up 60% of commercial chicken feed.Entire crops are being bought months in advance by countries who lost their own harvests (Australia for one) which drive up the price of what is now becoming a scarce commodity. The only thing producers can do is raise prices. Since we’re not operating on such microscopic profit margins, and would have a laying flock no matter what feed costs, we don’t have to charge more. Which still doesn’t change that they are laying less now that it’s winter….

  5. Our CSA recently came to the conclusion that it should no longer wash the eggs before selling them. The newsletter had a little blurb similar to what you wrote to explain to members why their eggs would no longer be clean!

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