Thursday, November 18, 2010

What's in the garden shed?

When we moved into our house last year there was a small garden shed in the back corner of the yard.  By adding a fully enclosed run to it (thanks Dad!) we had a chook home.  Earlier this year we bought two lovely young chickens (they weren't fully grown).  Butter the Rhode Island Red and Philadelphia the Australorp.

Phili was the first to start laying eggs a couple of months after we got her, and right from the start she laid perfect 50g eggs.  Butter started a bit after and she also laid lovely 50g eggs.  Sadly for our poached egg weekend lunches Phili has been broody for about 7 weeks.  We thought she would have snapped out of it by now, but no such luck.  So we are down to only one egg producer.  I've been tipping Phili out of the nesting box she has settled into every morning and evening, but so far it hasn't stopped her.  So this weekend I will be in full 'Stop Phili Brooding' mode - trying some of the tactics I read on the internet.  But if anyone can offer their own techniques, please let me know.

Butter is hard working though and she is converting greens, grain and grubs into about 6 eggs a week.  And they have the most vibrant orange yolks I've ever seen.  Her yolks even change the colour of cake batter.

We have to be very careful to always refer to Butter and Phili as 'chooks'.  We can't call them 'chickens' because we don't want Tansy getting ideas that her feathery friends are related to the tasty chicken neck treats we give her!

And after that long introduction, here are the chooks:

And their home:

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