It’s been a sad year for losses in the chicken run this year. We have lost five girls and now have a flock of seven. This makes it difficult to do a monthly average of eggs so I am just going to give the egg totals for each girl and the overall total.
Smoke has been broody for eight days and today she has stayed out in the run all day so I think she is through it now. This is quite quick for her but I think that may be due to the time of year.
However as the girls always take a couple of weeks after being broody before starting to lay again Smoke won’t start laying for a while. This means I can do my end of year egg count now.
The total eggs laid this year was 791. This was quite a lot more than last year ( 431 ) but was due to having a bigger flock for a while.
I will start with the girls that we have lost.
We lost Dandelion on 13/4/19. Dandelion had laid 8 eggs.
We lost Sienna on 25/4/19. Sienna laid only one tiny “first egg” and then never laid again. It turned out that she had a heart problem and this explains why she never laid.
We lost Vanilla on 4/9/19. Vanilla had laid 65 eggs.
We lost Cinnamon on 3/10/19. Cinnamon had laid 28 eggs.
We lost Jasmine on 28/10/19. Jasmine had laid 65 eggs.
Now on to the girls that we have remaining in the flock.
Speckles who is our elderly girl laid 6 eggs. Speckles laid 1 egg in March and 5 eggs in June. We were surprised when she started laying again. It wouldn’t surprise me if she didn’t lay next year but you never know. I wouldn’t predict more than 3 if she follows her trend of recent years.
Ebony laid 153 eggs and is our top layer. This is despite having some long broody spells.
Flame laid 114 eggs and had more broody spells than Ebony.
Salmon laid 60 eggs. Salmon has never gone broody.
Spangle laid 67 eggs and has also never gone broody.
Marmite laid 117 eggs and often went broody.
Smoke laid 118 eggs and she too often went broody.
This clearly shows that it is the best layers that go broody. Salmon and Spangle have never gone broody and have only laid about half the number of eggs of Marmite and Smoke who are frequent broodies.
Just imagine how many eggs Marmite and Smoke would lay if they didn’t go broody. Although it actually doesn’t work like that because it is good egg layers that go broody as they quickly lay enough to make up a clutch. The erratic egg layers don’t lay enough to make up a clutch in time to brood them.
I actually prefer the girls to lay less eggs and not go broody but of course we don’t get a choice about that with the breeds that we have.
My hope for the New Year, within the flock, is that we don’t have any more losses and manage to stay stable for a while. I am happier that I am now armed with tylan but of course with these girls we never know what may be coming next.
I am also aware that Speckles age means that I have to be prepared for her to go but she seems very well so I am hopeful that our creaking gate will continue to creak for a while yet.
Salmon is my other concern as she still has her wheeze. She seems well other than that though so I am hopeful that she may eventually stop wheezing. We can only hope for the best and I look forward to egg laying resuming in the New Year.
I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy New Year.