Friday, November 12, 2010

New Layers!

I didn't have time to post about this last week but just have to share it, of course!

You probably know by now that I got a lot of satisfaction and had fun hatching eggs this year. I had a horrible (HORRIBLE) time stopping, yet I knew it would get too cold for tiny birds to survive the winter so had too.

It's been fun to watch these youngsters I hatched out grow and start maturing. There have been quite a few days that I felt the pain of loss when I found a youngster dead or found I was missing birds due to predators. I've sure put a LOT of use to the live trap I bought. The old one wasn't working right any more and I had to stop the losses. I have some black sex link chicks I bought at TSC and bought a few youngsters from a couple people too so I'd have some new blood/genetics added to the flock. The Sex Links are carnivores and terribly cruel to the younger birds or any bird with anything they feel cause to peck it to death. (Those girls sure better be good layers or they are outta here! They got to go live with the Aracuana's who have been rough on new birds added to the flock and they now rule the Aracuanas!)

All that being, my Brahma chicklets have matured to nice pullets. I only have 3 left. I had gotten 2 from a gal near me and hatched out a few. All 3 are really pretty, and very friendly. I really like this breed so far. I need a Brahma roo for them as I'll be keeping them!

Last week they really "made my day" a few times. They have started to lay! I'm getting a small brown egg every other day. I've had a lot of chickens over the years and went a few years without any. That being, it surprises me a bit but I've been so excited over having eggs from chicklets that I hatched and raised. What a NEAT thing it's been. Each of the eggs has been such a neat gift and made looking for eggs exciting again. The older hens have all quit laying so it's especially nice to have a few eggs again! It's just plain fun too.

I don't expect the young Cochins to lay til Spring as they are slower developing. I'll be looking forward to them starting come February or March. The beginning of this year I think I started getting a few eggs in February and by March was getting a nice increase.

Considering my electric bill and the low percentages of successful hatched eggs, I have decided to go ahead and buy a Genesis 1588 incubator. That's the one that many many people recommend and those with cabinent incubators like to have one to use to help out. I'm hoping that it will reduce my electric consumption and increase the percentage of successful hatching. I had a bit of a hard time with all the eggs that didn't hatch. Some were blanks, but many had chicks that died at some point in their development. I know I'll be much happier with a better incubator and I'll not have to have as many attempted hatches.

Maybe I'll be able to get a small flock of the Jersey Giants going with a better incubator. And a better hatch for the pair of Silver Laced Cochins, and the pair of Favorelles and some turkey eggs, and........ Oh, I also want to get a start on a few mottled Cochins, white Cochins, Columbian Cochins, calico Cochins, buff Cochins, and..... Geez, there is so much I want to do!

Did I tell you how much I've enjoyed this cycle of life?

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