Chicken Math Strikes Again

BarredCometLaced

Songster
8 Years
Jul 10, 2011
295
45
161
Northern NH
Somehow convinced the family that the flock should continue to grow this year, due to a handful of hens turning 9+ years old. So in December (the earliest we've ever placed an order for chicks) I headed to Meyer Hatchery's website and browsed. I am a fan of hardy, unique hens of all shapes and sizes, so I chose three varieties (Two orpingtons and a Maran) which were immediately vetoed. "Eggs!" they said, "WE WANT LOTS OF EGGS." Remember they were saying this in December during the molt/egg strike... we get plenty of eggs in the summer (about a dozen a day from 17 hens).

But, I listened to them and came back with a group of 4 hens (they want more eggs, right? An extra chick will do the trick!) AGAIN. Vetoed. So I took off two of the fancy breeds and was left with a Buff Orpington and Lavender Orpington... non negotiables. I grudgingly suggested maybe we could add two golden comets, which, although eGGcellent layers, I find them boring. At the mention of their strengths in laying, the order was approved and placed.

Guys. December is early, and gives a chicken keeper time to really think about what she wants. The month of January was nearing its end, and I stomped inside the house from my trip to collect eggs. My bounty? One single, gorgeous maran egg. From 17 HENS! This girl has literally laid an egg a day when no other chicken has through the shortest days of the year. Of course, at this point, the whole family is grumbling and complaining about the store bought eggs we are forced to buy when our hens aren't laying. "Man, if only we had ordered some more marans with our order..." I said. "EGGS!" the family replied, "We want eggs in the winter! Nice sized eggs, like that one." They pointed to the egg I was holding 🙄 .

So I went back to Meyer's site and checked to see what was still available for our hatch date. BINGO. White and Cuckoo Marans. But then I felt bad for the two unborn Golden Comet chicks I had already committed to buy... It's not their fault, you know? So I compromised. + 1 White Maran, + 1 Cuckoo Maran, -1 Golden Comet.

Did my math work there? No?

So long story short, what was supposed to be an order of 3 chicks in December has now grown to an order of 5 chicks... and it's only February. And the coop hasn't gotten any bigger!

Thanks for listening 🤪
 

Mtnboomer

Songster
Mar 17, 2019
234
419
102
Southwest Virginia (mountains)
Lmao trust me, your just getting started. If you want big eggs in the winter, why not get a few ducks? My kahkis lay year round unless they are molting
Our ducks provided an egg a day like clockwork but were a mess. Today they provided some delicious meat. With our Brahmas laying well without artificial light, there was no need to keep the ducks or their high maintenance any more. I intend to build a 1/4-1/2ac pond in a year or two. We will have ducks again.
 

Mtnboomer

Songster
Mar 17, 2019
234
419
102
Southwest Virginia (mountains)
I
I told someone else here that I thought the only reason my leghorn hybrids layed straight though the winter is because it was their first year, I bet next winter I will not see any from them....
Am a nerd for statistics and record every egg i get, day harvested, even in which nesting box it was found. Compiling this in excel (sounds tedious but once you have it set up it takes 2 secs) I can see trends throughout the months and year to year. Last winter we had older birds and egg production dropped to zero without artificial lighting. This winter we have younger birds (Brahmas) and each bird is giving up 2 eggs a week without any lighting.
Only problem with my records is that this is the last year (most likely) for having older birds. We have gotten into a harvest cycle that will prevent most from seeing their 1st birthday.
 

Jealous Gypsy

Songster
Jul 13, 2019
231
711
146
Northern Maine
Our ducks provided an egg a day like clockwork but were a mess. Today they provided some delicious meat. With our Brahmas laying well without artificial light, there was no need to keep the ducks or their high maintenance any more. I intend to build a 1/4-1/2ac pond in a year or two. We will have ducks again.
Yea ducks are messy. Mine are pets though i love them.
 

Acre4Me

Free Ranging
Nov 12, 2017
3,380
7,189
517
Western Ohio
I told someone else here that I thought the only reason my leghorn hybrids layed straight though the winter is because it was their first year, I bet next winter I will not see any from them....
you might be ok. My neighbor’s all-Leghorn flock laid like clockwork for 2 winters, experiencing a 5-week molt in early fall. He decided to cull at 2 years (contributing to the great circle of life by releasing them in a relatives land with permission), and getting a new flock of Leghorns. They’ve laid all this past winter (no added light), but it’s their first winter.
 
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