Saturday, August 27, 2011

Random Rantings...

Well, there's not much new or exciting to report this week.  And honestly, I like boring and routine.

Ginger did lay her 100th egg last week and the girls got a HUGE scoop of meal worms to share.  I know my egg count chart is not 100% accurate but it gives me a good gauge of their egg laying schedule.  If you had told me that we'd have over 300 eggs some 9 months into their lives, I wouldn't have believed you.  And Ginger is hunkered down in her favorite nest box making another egg as I write this.

I did cut back on the amount of treats I give them.  I don't give them anything in the morning anymore and that has really worked out well.  They still peck at me and beg when I go out to scoop out the night's droppings from the house.  But they no longer pick on Ginger like they used to do.  And they are eating lots of of their feed.  Which is really what they should be eating.

Interesting note about this higher quality feed, the girls don't touch their oyster shells anymore.  So I'm guessing that they are getting enough calcium from their feed.  But the new feed has between 3-3.5% calcium.  Their old feed was between 3.4-3.9% calcium.  Maybe it's in a form that they can absorb better?  I don't know.  I'm just happy to see them eating their food and not picking on Ginger so I won't question it.

I've read more discussions about worms and parasites lately and learned that slugs and snails can be carriers.  So can wild birds.  So unless you keep your birds completely contained, how do you insulate them from potential parasites?  I certainly don't want my girls to pick up any parasites.  And I love the natural pest control in my yard.  So where is the balance?

They say that mixing DE in with their feed can help prevent them from picking up parasites so I've started to do that more regularly.  And I called their vet last week who said that they would run tests on their droppings to test them for parasites.  (I wouldn't have to bring in the girls, just the droppings.)  And of course, at the first sign of trouble, I would be on it to treat it.  But I suppose taking in some droppings once a year for a professional examination would be a good idea.

And now I hear cackling.  Bok bok bok bok BAWK GAWK!!!  Bok bok bok bok BAWK GAWK!!!  And I can tell Coco's song because she does a double BAWK GAWK GA GAWK at the end.  So Ginger must be done laying and Coco is joining in because a duet is more fun than a solo.

How many of you can tell the subtle differences in your hen's egg song?

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