At the moment we still have only Smoke and Ebony laying. Smoke has laid eleven eggs in fifteen days and Ebony has laid six eggs in thirteen days. Smoke is a really good layer. She will eventually go broody though.
Flame hasn’t shown any interest in the nest boxes since the day when she was in the nest box putting pine shavings on her back. This is surprising as I thought that meant she was ready to start soon.
Speckles also hasn’t shown any interest in the nest box since that day either. There have been wet poops under her roost spot since that day though. This, I think, is definitely proof that this is a hormonal thing for her. As soon as her comb goes red and she starts looking ready to lay she starts with wet poops again.
Speckles seems absolutely fine in herself though and this has now been going on for the last few years so I am not worried about her. I think it will probably be a while before she lays if at all.
Spangle was just being nosy about why Speckles was in the nest box and also hasn’t looked in a nest box since that day.
Marmite hasn’t yet shown any interest in the nest boxes and she is the second best, little girl, layer.
Salmon also hasn’t shown any interest in the nest boxes which doesn’t surprise me as Salmon and Spangle are erratic layers.
Salmon is still wheezing though. This has now been going on for a long time. I have treated with tylan several times and at one point went on for three weeks and it made no difference. My experience with myco in the past has been that once treated the strong girls get better and the girls with any other under laying problem or weakness decline until we lose them.
Salmon has proved different. Salmon hasn’t got better or worse and seems absolutely fine in every other way except that she has a wheeze. I can tell when she is nearby because I can hear her. This is so odd. We have wondered if she has some sort of blockage causing her wheeze although at the back of my mind the prospect of myco is always there.
There is nothing to be done but just wait and see what happens with Salmon. Apart from her wheeze she behaves just like any other of the girls.
The flock looks great and I am very happy with them. The number at the moment is a good number. The only reason I increased the flock size when I brought in the five amigos was that I wanted to guard against losses as the seramas seem so fragile.
I had only ever added two or three at a time before. I think it was the right thing to do as I lost five girls last year which was a blow. The flock size now is perfect and there is ample room in the smaller chicken shed.
I just don’t want to lose any more. That’s a daft thing to say though because, of course, we never want to lose girls. I just hope that we can keep this flock as it is for a long time. I am always aware that the vulnerable ones are Speckles because of her age and Salmon because of her wheeze.
I just hope that despite that we can stay as a flock of seven as long as possible as the flock is so lovely as it is now. I know that things never stay the same in chicken world but I hope that it does so for a good while to come.