I think Speckles is getting reading to start laying again. I have noticed that her comb is getting bigger and redder almost day by day. She is also more vocal.
Speckles also has habits that seem to change with her times of egg laying. She becomes very motherly to Dandelion and Cinnamon when she isn’t laying but that disappears when she is laying. She is also different with me. She loves to jump on my back at every opportunity during her egg laying and coming into lay but doesn’t bother much in the winter.
The other change in her behaviour is that jumps on the gate when I go in to give out the morning seeds and evening corn. She likes to jump on the gate and then to my shoulder. She has just started doing this again. It is odd that this a habit during egg laying as if egg laying sparks a change in her.
Emerald used to like to jump to the gate with Speckles but I think Ebony and Flame are too heavy for such larks.
She has her usual little group of feathers sticking up on her head. This is Speckles signature.
I call her name to get her to look at me. Speckles always pays me lots of attention so she is easy to photograph. She is very much my girl.
Face on you can see how big her wattles are.
Last year Speckles laid her first egg on the fifth of March so the timing is about right for her. She is a very poor layer though so having her back in lay doesn’t make a huge difference but she does lay enormous eggs.
Speckles laid three eggs in March and three in April last year. She then laid four in May then took a break and laid another two in August. Twelve eggs in a year has got to be some sort of a record for a breed that is supposed to be a good layer. Only Topaz has ever proved a worse layer.
I thought that Speckles had a bit of a problem last year so I am hopeful that she may do better this year. During the time that she took a break, June and July, she was drinking loads of water and doing runny poops. She became obsessed with drinking drips of rain water from the weld mesh and the extra water was probably causing the runny poops.
I think that when we then had hot and dry weather it sparked a change in her behaviour and that in turn led to laying a couple more eggs.
It doesn’t matter to me how many eggs she lays as long as she stays healthy. Speckles is such a unique character.
One of Speckles more annoying traits is wanting to sleep outside in the summer. It’s frustrating because it leads Ebony and Flame to follow her whereas I don’t think they would do this if she didn’t. During the unusual warm and sunny weather recently, Speckles on two occasions, settled on the branch perch that is the other side of the hatch at dusk.
I had to put her in the chicken shed once the pop hole had closed. Once the weather turned more normal for the time of year Speckles went back to going in the chicken shed at bedtime. This reminded me that she will no doubt resume this behaviour in the summer. Oh well! No matter what I want they will always do what they want. This has been a habit I have been unable to change.
No doubt I will be putting the big girls to bed each night all summer once more. I doubt Speckles will ever change.