Meet Jeffrey - Our Australorp Hen [Large Pics]

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by TC_BokBok, Aug 9, 2010.

  1. TC_BokBok

    TC_BokBok In the Brooder

    Sep 9, 2009
    Traverse City, MI
    Yes, a hen named Jeffrey. Long and funny story but that's for another time. Jeffrey has been acting a little differently this past week and has taken on herself to go into the far back corner of our hen house and make herself a perfectly circular nest. Now unfortunately this is on the complete opposite side of the nest box I have with 3 golf balls right now to "entice" my flock of 5 hens to lay in the nest box. My nest box is conveniently built to be accessible outside the coop so you can see why I'd much rather they lay there but one thing at a time.

    Our flock is all the same age, 19 weeks old, and Jeffrey is by far the most developed of my flock. I'm taking that the nesting behavior is symptomatic of a "soon to lay" hen. At least I hope so. I'd love to get your ideas on this. None of my flock are laying right now. I have 1 Easter Egger, 2 SL Wyandottes, and 2 Australorps.

    So, here's some pics of Jeffrey... my hopefully soon to be laying hen. I'm sorry if the large pics appear incorrectly in your browser. I didn't take the time to re-size them. Thanks for your comments and ideas about the nesting behavior and anything else in general. I <3 BYC!

    Front close-up shot.

    A pic of Jeffrey with my own #1 Hen. [​IMG]

    Another close-up of Jeffrey.
  2. Robin'sBrood

    Robin'sBrood Flock Mistress

    May 8, 2008
    North Carolina
    She sure is, um, handsome! (With a name like Jeffrey it's hard to call her pretty... [​IMG] )

    My girls started laying in strange places when they were younger. What I did was take a real, marked egg in the nest box. It seemed to entice the girls to lay where I wanted them to more than any fake eggs. I used until they were good and established then I tossed it. Best wishes!
  3. TC_BokBok

    TC_BokBok In the Brooder

    Sep 9, 2009
    Traverse City, MI
    That's a great idea! Thanks!

    I can tell by the bedding that they are setting down on top of the golf balls but I never actually catch them in there. Even at 19 weeks they insist on sleeping on the floor. I have to entice them more onto the roost although I know several other BYCers just let their chickens sleep where they want and don't put much more thought into it.
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Beautiful, healthy hen in spite of the name. She's about to lay any time.
  5. tuesdays chicks

    tuesdays chicks Songster

    Apr 26, 2010
    stuart florida
    tell me jeffery is 2s the size of your other pullets please because she is huge and mine are 19 week old pip squeeks
  6. PetRock

    PetRock Crowing

    Apr 28, 2010
    SF Bay Area, CA
    She's a beauty! She's a Brown Australorp? I have a 20 week old Black Australorp who has a very tiny comb and tiny wattles. Do the black ones just have smaller ones than the brown ones? Or are we a ways away from laying?
  7. TC_BokBok

    TC_BokBok In the Brooder

    Sep 9, 2009
    Traverse City, MI
    Actually I just found out the Jeffrey just laid our 1st egg today!

    My wife found it at lunch but it was cracked open. I'm hoping that the nest she made which was scratched down to the bare wood floor is the cause of the cracked egg. Perhaps she laid it, it fell and broke open, etc. etc. etc. I wont know more till I get home and can inspect the scene. By coincidence our other Australorp is now behaiving just like her so maybe we'll have 2 laying hens soon.

    tuesdays chicks
    As for her size she's actually the most developed with her combs and wattles, was also the largest for the longest time (another reason why we thought she was a he) but my other flock are all about her size now. They get lots of veggie treats and greens as well as a healthy supply of clean water from a nipple water system and as much chick starter as they like with a little bit of cayenne pepper added since it's laying time for the flock.

    Thanks everyone. Keep the comments coming if you have any questions or just something to say. [​IMG]
  8. Jeffrey (and your "best hen"!) are just beautiful!
    My Aussies turned 13 weeks over the weekend, and are a long way from Jeffrey's splendor.
    I can hardly wait to see them at her age!
    Congrats on the layers!!!

    Brightest Blessings!
  9. Sweetpeaswan

    Sweetpeaswan Chirping

    Aug 5, 2010
    What a lovely girl!!!! and big......we use polished wood eggs ( we found them at a little country store) and place them in the box....We also
    found that having two older girls that were laying, seemed to help,. they would leave their run and take a stroll in the older girls
    coop, and hop in their nesting box...before we knew Lacy our Golden Lace Wyandotte was running in there like a she devil chasing
    them out. what a site!!! Good luck
  10. MakNugget

    MakNugget Songster

    May 31, 2010
    Portland, OR

    I too have a rather undeveloped black australorp that's 17 weeks and has very little comb, and almost no red except for the outside corners of her beak. All in due time I guess! They are growing fast!

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