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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kingme, Dec 22, 2009.
I love my friends who say things like, "You guys always get your eggs for FREE!" Sure, we do.
Our "free" eggs are currently running close to $12.00/dozen.
At least these days the chickens are paying their feed bill.
I don't expect to see our initial investment repaid, I'm happy to cover the feed cost and to have some eggs for ourselves.
I also have some chickens that lay eggs with bloodspots in them.
Those eggs I scramble back up and feed to them. Pets that feed themselves.
They love warm scrambled eggs in the winter!
My Dad is an old mean farmer. Tonight I was showing him the plans for my new chicken coop. He was incredulous. "Your eggs are going to cost you $100 a dozen!" He said. "It's just not worth it!" - It's the love of the game, Dad. It's the love of the game.
When I first started knitting - my husband figured yarn couldn't be that expensive. One day (several years later) - he saw a receipt for that yarn - now I get the stink eye everytime I walk in the door with some -
I'm hoping it will be another several years before he thinks too hard about what those free eggs cost
Quote:Weeeeeell some things are better than money IMO.
It's snowing in Arkansas today, you know what that means. Huge rush to WalMart to buy eggs, bread, & milk, among other things. Traffic will be bad, lines will be long, and stores will run out.
Guess what?? All I have to do is walk across the back yard!
I buy outlet bread in bulk so my freezer is full of bread, and I only buy evaporated milk in a can for baking becauase fresh milk always spoils before I use it up.
See, I'm not out there battling all the crazies!
I will have fresh eggs and toast in the morning, whether or not it snows - sans the wild trip to WalMart!
There was a thread the other day about some guy's spreadsheet to track expenses. Good grief, if I did that, I'd never hear the end of it.
I took a sick chicken into the midnight vet a few days ago (40cc of fluids perked her up, I think it was sour crop from eating something weird and then not eating or drinking for 2 days) and figured I need to sell 240 of her eggs to pay for the trip. Good thing for her she has a name or she'd have been served with roasted carrots last night.
These aren't money-making livestock, they're useful pets.
I'm lucky and was able to build my coop for a grand total of $7. And it is a pretty big coop (large enough for 24 hens but I have just 12 right now) I love recycled materials!
I've been selling my eggs to hubby's co workers for $1 per doz but that is going to go up. It is more of a "good will" venture than any hopes of making money off them.
I also have a fridge FULL of eggs that I don't have room for and just can't eat them all. Even with the cold/snow we've been having, I'm still getting on average 10 eggs a day (from 12 hens).
We sell just enough eggs to cover their feed.
Even though we live in California where everything seems to be a little more expensive, so far I always broke even with all my costs and the eggs laid (incl. the coop, run, shavings, feed.....). I kept all the receipts and I sell my eggs for $ 4.20 a dozen.
Last month I had to take one of my girls to the veterinarian. Initial visit $ 40 plus $ 70 for a fecal and medications. I also perked her up with lots of meal worms and crickets from the pet store, which are ridiculous expensive here. But hey, she is better today and at least a relationship to a good veterinarian has been established, which can be priceless in the future. I refuse to count the costs of that.....
I think our pen costed out at about $400 all up - including a 2nd hand coop that we got from a friend for $50. The most expensive item was the Laserlite roofing (a kind of see-through corrugated fibreglass), which we have used on the sides and about 2/3 of the roof, so it matches the house. We are lucky because we don't have particularly cold winters here in Melbourne, Australia (lucky to get below 5 degrees celcius on a winter night) however we do get HOT summers (many 35 degree C (95 deg F) or more days. Last summer we got up to 115 deg F - we didn't have chickens then though, but one of our canaries died from the heat. Not really looking forward to the February heat this year!
We paid about $20 each for our birds (5 Barnevelders and 2 gold pencilled Hamburgs), who were about 13 or 14 weeks old, we have now had them for about 7 weeks, and we are still waiting for our first egg! The Barnies do not look anywhere near laying, but one of the Hamburgs might not be far away - she has turned very red around the face and her comb is starting to grow. We pay about $30 for a 40kg bag of organic feed, which lasts about 6 weeks or so. Our chickens free range in our back yard every day.
To buy free range eggs costs about $6.50 per dozen, up to $8.50 for 'organic free range' from the supermarket - which I have my doubts about whether they really are 'free range' - although they are certified organic. Regular cage eggs cost about $4.00 per dozen. I am not sure if we will sell our eggs, and at what cost yet - I am too busy waiting for them to lay LOL!
The entertainment value and "family bonding" they provide is priceless, however .
At least Chickens pay back something. I haven't caluclated the cost for my two lazy cats and Puppy dog but I'm sure it's not good, but I luv em anyway.