This year I have had to wait until the very last day to do my end of year egg totals as Smoke and Ebony have been laying through the end of December.
Smoke and Ebony are so in sync at the moment that they have taken to sharing the favourite nest box and yesterday after laying they shared a dust bath together. It seems to have bonded them for the moment.
Smoke has kept the little white patch on her head. I think this may be a permanent feature.
I record my eggs on some vintage sheets that I first got from Terry’s blog when she kept chickens. I print a new sheet ahead of time each year.
My eldest son and I.T. expert laughs at my paper records. I find them invaluable though. I make notes on the sheets of new girls’ arrivals and ages and girls lost, of first eggs laid and soft shells or weird eggs and of vet visits or treatments. It is a great tool to quickly look back at for information and I love comparing the amount of eggs laid by each girl each year. I use the girls’ initial to record their egg.
So here are this years totals and a comparison with last year.
Speckles laid just the 1 egg this year which is 5 less than last year. She is our oldest girl and I didn’t really expect her to lay at all this year and don’t expect her to lay again but you never know with these girls.
Ebony laid 115 which is 38 less than last year.
Flame laid 138 which is 24 more than last year.
Smoke laid 117 which is 1 less than last year.
Spangle laid 59 which is 8 less than last year.
Salmon laid 71 which is 11 more than last year.
Marmite laid 63 which is 54 less than last year.
Shadow and Sugar are about 6 months old and haven’t started laying yet.
This years total eggs is 564.
What we would expect is that each girl will lay a bit less each year. What is surprising is that a few girls have laid more.
I think the reason Flame has laid more is that she only went broody once this year as opposed to several times the year before. Flame also continued to lay for 2 months longer than last year.
Smoke is a regular good layer but also a regular broody and it’s amazing how close her total is to last year.
Salmon was laying some soft shelled eggs last year and this year she has laid good shelled eggs so I think that is why she has laid more this year. It’s almost as if whatever problem Salmon had last year has fixed itself which is really good news.
Marmite has been the opposite. Marmite laid good shells last year but this year has laid soft shells all year. I think this is why, fortunately for her, she has laid much less this year.
I find it odd that Marmite has developed this problem as mostly it seems that the girls that lay soft shells do so from the start. I feel really sad for Marmite and it so good that she isn’t laying for now but I worry how she will be next year.
I would be happy for Marmite to stop laying altogether but as we know from experience this doesn’t happen. We can only hope for the best for her next year.
All that remains is for us to wish my readers a Happy New Year and to hope that next year will be a better year for everyone.