Summer Time – Flocking Chickens

Silky Bantam

Silky Bantam

It’s getting to be the time of the year that many folks that bought 25 or more day old chicks in January are now finding smallish pulley eggs in your nest boxes. And now need to deduce their flock size. It is past time to process all those young roosters into friers and you can pick up more pullets and young laying hens at a very reasonable price now. If your looking for meat birds or a rooster for your flock start looking now. Many flocks will have far to many roosters and you can pick them up for rock bottom prices to process for fresh meat birds or to fill your freezer.

Any of the Leghorn breeds are excellent layers and do not go broody. They lay large white eggs. Big Grin … Put them in an old egg carton and the kids will never know the eggs did not come from your local supermarket! Most other breeds lay lightly tinted to dark brown eggs. Check out McMurry’s Catalog for a ton of useful information on many different breeds, egg colors they lay and much more.

chicken ears Hint Did you know that you can determine what color eggs your pullets will lay by looking at her ears? Brown egg layers will have brownish ears and white egg layers will have whiteish ears.
The answer is I don’t know the ear color of Araucanas (Easter egg chicken) they lay beautiful colored eggs of blue-green shades from turquoise to deep olive.

Chicken growers have a large selection to choose from. The small Bantams to the New Jersey and Black Giants. Everything from plain Jane everyday chickens to award winning Fancy’s. They come in every color in a rainbow to solid whites or blacks. Some breeds are very quite easy to handle others always seem to be a bit stand offish and on the skittish side. With that said, they all have a few things in common. They are always fun to raise, fun to watch, eat a a lot of insects, grass and weed seeds and are wonderful table meat and produce eggs from the size of a quarter to extra large eggs. No mater what breed you select I’m sure you will enrich your life and give your family an experience they will carry through life. You will be blessed having them in your backyard.

Pullets and hens are for the most part quite and easy to handle. If you have neighbors close by, be a good neighbor and buy only pullets. Most people do not appreciate being woke up at 3am by your early bird rooster. And No you do not need a rooster for egg production. Only if you need fertile eggs for hatching a few chicks from eggs you have gathered from your flock.

A small flock of chickens require only about 2 square feet of flood space in their coop. A 4X4=16 square foot coop, 1/2 sheet of plywood, will easily house 4 or 5 laying hens. Don’t for get a hen will lay one egg about every 27 hours. So you can except to get 6 eggs a week from each laying hen. That is about 2 dozen eggs a week from 4 laying hens. How many eggs does your family eat every week?

Chicken Sex is fairly easy to determine if you know the secret to feather sexing day old chicks. This is a visual examination of the chicks wing feathers to determine it’s sex.
Click picture to Zoom-In
feather sexing chicks

One note of Caution: Feather sexing chickens can only be accomplished when the chicks are 1 or 2 days old. Birds grow so fast that by day 3 it is ‘Very’ difficult or impossible to use this method to determine the sex of chickens.

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Why is common sense so uncommon?
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4 responses to “Summer Time – Flocking Chickens

  1. Libby Keane

    The ears of the Ameraucana (easter egg chicken )are a light, pale green, Po. Nice post.


  2. I didn’t know that about the ears. That makes me want to go out and look at everyone’s ears in our flock of Wyandottes, Jersey Giants, White Rocks, Fayoumi and mutts!


  3. Interesting post! Again!


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