Monday, March 31, 2008

Oystershell grit for softshell hens

Chickens require calcium for strong eggshells.
When they don't get a sufficient quantity the birds lay eggs with thin or even no shells (which is bad news for the owners!).
So they need oyster shell grit!
The problem is, our babies don't seem to like it, they even seem to be scared of the stuff!
Maybe they'll figure it out.

One of the neighbor's hens, Blackbird, hates one of our hens, Cutie-Pie, who hates her just as much.
They have dueled twice, totally ignoring the fence that separates them.
When chickens battle they run at each other holding themselves erect with neck feathers raised.
It's sort of intimidating, I guess.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The SnowHens!

Sleeve Eater, Snowneck, and Cheeseball: Chickens in snow

Chickens don't like snow.
It makes their toes cold so they stay under the shelter all day.  Today was like that.
The birds were all eating and talking quietly together.  It was very peaceful.
Some ducks were wandering about and the neighbor's chickens were sitting under their house on stilts (the house, not the birds).
Occasionally a hen would start eating snow!
And, as if they think we might eat them, they laid us five lovely eggs!
Have you noticed that our chickens can be quite inspirational?!

Combs and Wattles
In response to the question, "What are wattles? How many does a chicken have?" we present Snowneck's head for your education.

Wattles: Are those two red flaps of skin hanging
under a chicken's beak. Snowneck's are especially lovely.

The Comb: Is the other large, red piece of skin except
these stand up. They do look a bit like your plastic one, don't they?

Ears: We think the red folds of skin behind the wattles are ears.

The chicken's face is quite beautiful, right?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

You Don't Have To Have Chickens To Enjoy Looking At Them

Extraordinary Chickens
photographed by Stephen Green-Armytage

You might not want chickens right now but they're really
fun to look at!
This book shows some very amazing (and amusing) breeds!

Pocketful of Poultry
by Carol Ekarius

Colorful photos of chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys adorn almost
every page of this informative and interesting book.

Some of the most beautiful and/or funny birds are:
Mille Fleur d'uccle bantams
Naked Neck (if you think turkeys are cute)
Seramas (the smallest chicken in the world)

You can Search these on the web or read about them in
Pocketful of Poultry (think your library might have it?)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Take Me Out To The Chickens

The Editor is rather annoyed by the lack of chicken songs which are fun to sing so she composed one.
It goes to the tune of "Take Me Out To The Ball Game"

Take Me Out To The Chickens

Take me out to the chickens,
take me out to the hens!
Buy me some chicken feed in a sack,
I don't care if I never come back!

'Cause it's cluck, cluck, cluck for the chickens,
cluck, cluck, cluck for the hens,
and it doesn't matter
if I never come home

If you are more of the riddle sort here's one for you;

I'm black or white,
I'm gray or brown,
I give the table something round.
What am I?

And here's a hint;

If for an answer you are stuck,
I wear fine feathers like a duck,
but don't say "Quack" but rather "Cluck!"

answer: a chicken