Which came first the chicken or the egg?

8

A strange looking egg If you've been following my blogs, you'll remember that we got some chickens in the summer. We rescued five girls (hybrids) from a big flock and since then got four pure breds (a light Sussex, two barnvelders and a French Maran). The girls have all settled in now and have got over their pecking order squabbles, but now they have gone a bit weird.

I understand that towards the end of the summer they go through a moult during which time they replace a lot of their feathers and stop laying so many eggs. 

The thing is we are still getting a few eggs but some of them are… well to say the least a bit funny (see picture)!  Maybe I should rub in some Gatineau night cream or some Decleor Aromessence!

The question is: has the moult made them lay funny eggs or has the delivery of such a dinosaur-like monster made then start to moult? It brings tears to my eyes just to look at!
  Simon's chickens 
MaranBarnvelder   

We're giving them lots of lovely high protein feed to help them with all their new feathers but wonder how long this going to last and if there is anything else that causes eggs to look like this? Now I know lots of you are much more experienced in the art of poultry rearing than I and if you have any tips I would be more than happy to try them. Just leave a comment and I’ll get back to you to let you know if it has any effect.

By the way, they are all very tame now. After the young ones got over their fear of a new environment, they all come running over to greet us when we visit them. Of course they are, I’m sure, much more interested in what titbits we may have than they are in us.

Simon X

P.S. I know I've been threatening to take on the women’s guild with my Bramble Jelly, but I've been at work so much lately and the days are getting shorter. I just haven’t been at home long enough to get started. The berries are all in the freezer though and this weekend the house WILL smell gorgeous!

8 Comments

  1. Alicia October 8, 2009 at 4:18 pm -  Reply

    Hi Simon,
    Your chickens might need more mixed grit,although I have four chickens moulting and have had a few strange eggs too.
    We have had our chickens nearly two years and are still learning new things about them.Each egg must be worth about £100 with all the differt things we buy for them like tonics,feeders and a new fancy eglu home.Never mind we love them and they are great to watch!!!!!
    Good luck with yours..

  2. Simon Biagi October 8, 2009 at 4:37 pm -  Reply

    Thanks Alicia.
    I think our eggs are probably just as expensive, but worth every penny. I thought about grit, and Boom: another £8.95 flew out of my wallet, but they don’t seem to eat it and the feed they are on (organic of course) is supposed to have enough grit in it. I thought it may be because they have been laying eggs ALL year round since they were able to (being rescue birds) and just need a break over the winter. I guess we’ll see in the Spring…… Unless anyone out there knows more?
    Simon X

  3. Simon Biagi October 8, 2009 at 4:38 pm -  Reply

    By the way …. the egg – although weird to look at- tasted fine! S

  4. Alicia October 10, 2009 at 8:20 pm -  Reply

    Hi simon,
    Mixed grit is normally about £1.50 a bag.
    If you put it in a container near there food they will eat it if you keep it filled up.
    They are supposed to stop laying from bonfire night to valentines day!!!
    You want to go on Francine Raymonds web site(the kitchen garden) or buy her books.I have also done chicken keepers courses there.She is lovely and knows all there is to know about keeping chickens in your garden.
    Alicia x

  5. Simon Biagi October 14, 2009 at 4:52 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alicia, Thanks so much for the ‘diary’ times it makes it so much easier to know if things are going the way they should. I did buy a huge sack of grit and I have it in for them when they feed but they don’t seem that interested. I’ll check out the web site you suggest….. i sounds good!
    Simon X

  6. julia October 16, 2009 at 7:39 pm -  Reply

    hubby says try a shallow large tray with grit in for a dustbath, chickens love it. also when they clean themselves, they are intaking the grit. hope this helps.

  7. Simon Biagi October 19, 2009 at 1:33 pm -  Reply

    OOh Julia, I like this one as they need a dust bath, tell yer hubby he’s not as bad as you said!! Simon x

  8. ISOBEL October 31, 2009 at 3:36 pm -  Reply

    HI SIMON
    YES THEY DO CHANGE THERE CLOCKS IN THE US OZ & NZ HOPE THIS HELPS.

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