The frost settled in heavy a few mornings back though thankfully warmed up nicely in the afternoon. My young Welsummer pullets (and five roosters) seemed to be in awe or shock at their surroundings. Or maybe they are just frozen! Naw, it wasn’t really that cold.
Having the chickens stay in the garden for the winter is a win-win-win. They have lots to scratch in, i can throw all kitchen scraps out there and they bury it or eat it, plus they poop a lot adding tons of manure nutrients to the soil. However, to prepare the ground for winter grazing, about mid-summer i allow grasses to grow unencumbered so they are mature and lay over by the end of the growing season.
Daughter, Jessica, noticed a spider in the shower, so wanting to get ahead of the curve, i decided to move our Welsummer laying hens to around the house foundation. Thankfully, we finally received some rain, so it was at least doable, though difficult still, to pull the electric fence posts out of the ground.
I move them near dusk so the ladies don’t drift too far from their roosting home and scatter. I can take down the fence and move it, then about the time i’ve set up their new digs, they have filed inside according to their pecking order and i shut the solar electric pop door early and pull the wagon around.
The beauty of having chooks is they can turn over ripe cucumbers into delectable golden yoked eggs.
This is a dorky video, but this young hen wants to be a mommy SO badly, yet she is well behaved and does not peck or bite me when i collect the eggs beneath her, so i thought i’d share with you how a broody hen reacts when disturbed.
If i had a purebred Welsummer rooster, i’d let her lay and set on some fertilized eggs so she could raise some chicks, but i don’t. Of course, these eggs are not fertilized and will never develop embryos. These Welsummers, purchased from Cacklehatchery, are the most entertaining, friendly (though are easily startled), beautiful hens i’ve ever raised. They are excellent layers to boot.
I had a few repairs to make to the eggmobile since its high profile encourages it to be blown over in heavy winds, which we seem to get more of these past few years. I have rigged a way to support it so it doesn’t blow over anymore.
Anyway, collected these few eggs a bit early in the day because it’s a bit wet and muddy and the hens sometimes come into the nesting boxes with muddy feet, soiling the eggs.