Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Chickens are Nesting!

The ladies are about five months old now, and I'm starting to get excited for some eggs.

To prepare, last weekend the Chicken Man and I cleaned out the bottom of the coop and got quite a haul of pre-compost from all the poop and straw. Mixed with the rabbit poop, it's now hanging out in our neighbor's bin until next spring.

In addition to cleaning the coop, Chicken Man also set up the nesting boxes. I learned that you can put golf balls in them to get the hens ready for egg laying.

(I'm not quite sure what the role of the golf balls is.. I'll have to ask again!)

But so far I've been getting a quick rush of excitement in the morning when I see a white orb, only to realize with disappointment that I'm looking at a golf ball. The hens seem more interested in eating the straw than laying eggs.

But this morning Chicken Man told me to look in the back corner of the coop- the chickens have decided to build their own nest!

The egg count down begins. Oooh!

And in case any other chicken owners or fans are interested, we also have Araucanas in addition to the White Orpingtons and Rhode Island Reds pictured above.

The only photo I could get of the Araucanas looks like this:

So I stole a better one from the Internet so you can see how crazy and Muppet-y they look.



rachel whetzel said...

How EGGciting!! First eggs are always fun!! The purpose of the golf balls is to fool the hens into thinking that another hen has laid in the nest. They like to lay where other chickens have laid already. If one of them were to start setting a nest, the other hens would add their eggs to the clutch. The one hen would raise all the chicks that hatch. Not just her own.

************* said...

Aww, sisterhood :)

I was wondering if it mattered that we only have two nesting boxes but there are seven hens. That explains things!

Clearly Chicken Man has done more research on this than I have. He has already owned chickens, I'm just a tag-along but make sure to do my part in labor.

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