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  1. Callender Girl

    Mystery of Dottie's heritage solved

    Dottie, the free chick I was given at the local feed store last year (and which is STILL living in the house because of cold weather and poor social skills) laid her first egg today. She was the last of the "assorted rare breed pullets" at the store last fall, but I knew she was from Hoover's...
  2. Callender Girl

    Claire is dead

    Today, I opened the duck shelter and everyone poured out, except Claire. She was one of my Indian runners, and she had always walked funny, just on her tip toes, like she couldn't put her "heels" on the ground. Yesterday, she was having trouble on the ice, but so was everyone else, including me...
  3. Callender Girl

    Blood on her eggshells

    On Saturday and again today, Petra -- a one-year-old Sapphire Gem -- has produced an egg with blood on the shell. It's not like she's a new layer; she's been producing since last winter. And, I wouldn't have worried (too much) if it had only happened once. She's in a coop with her Gem sister and...
  4. Callender Girl

    Easter Eggers Trick and Treat

    I bought two Americanas -- in other words, Hoover Hatchery Easter Eggers -- in the spring, and while they are beautiful girls, I was disappointed that they weren't laying yet. However, last week, Evie produced her first egg -- a perfectly formed almost-pinkish cream egg. I was, of course...
  5. Callender Girl

    Not (entirely) my fault

    While my sister was in town, we went to Bomgaars, ostensibly for her to look at the clearanced garden art. I joked with the poultry lady, Jody, about having sold all her "assorted rare breed" pullet chicks and having nothing left but meat birds -- which I have NO interest in buying. HOWEVER, it...
  6. Callender Girl

    What is my roo doing?

    Nearly every day, Sir Henry the Loud jumps up into the nest box and spends several minutes making trilling noises, but he's only serenading himself. Anyone know what he's doing and why? It's not like the noises he makes when he's talking to his hens.
  7. Callender Girl

    Surprise from Paige

    Paige, my runner duck whose leg was mangled when she was egg bound months ago, had a surprise for me today. When I got home from town and was preparing to release her from her little infirmary crate inside the duck shelter (I only use it because the boys REFUSE to leave her alone and she can't...
  8. Callender Girl

    Is she egg bound

    I got home from an out-of-town trip this morning, and one of my runner hens was reluctant to stand up. She stayed laying down while she ate and drank, doesn't seem to be in any pain and is shaking her tail a lot. She has done something like this once before and eventually laid an egg. Is that...
  9. Callender Girl

    Gussie is laying again

    Gussie, my American Buff goose who filled a nest with eggs recently, has decided to lay again. I watched her make a lovely nest in one of the open chicken runs today -- much to the chagrin of the chickens who wanted to hang out in there. However, since I have learned that her partner, Golly, is...
  10. Callender Girl

    Okay to break open an egg?

    I just did my first egg-candling experience. I don't think any of the 19 goose eggs are fertile. But, I'm not sure. Gussie and Golly both left the goose house together for the first time in forever, so I slipped in and grabbed eggs. I checked most, but not all, and don't see anything that looks...
  11. Callender Girl

    New concern with Gussie's nesting

    Last night, there were four eggs in Gussie's nest, and for the first time since she started laying (two previous eggs didn't get into the nest), she actually sat on the nest this morning for more than four hours. I just looked out the window, and not only is she off the nest, it looks like...
  12. Callender Girl

    Gussie wants to nest in hay shed

    I was thrilled Saturday when I found my first-ever goose egg. Gussie, my American Buff, laid her egg under a raised chicken coop, right in a pile of melting snow. So much for keeping the bloom on the shell. Yesterday, I noticed she and her companion, Golly, were spending a lot of time in one of...
  13. Callender Girl

    Hello from Callender, Iowa

    After lurking on Backyard Chickens for a l-o-n-g time, I've finally decided to join the community. My vets are great but may not be the best at poultry issues. Although we had chickens and Mallard ducks when I was growing up, I decided to add my own chickens at our acreage about two and half...
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