November 04, 2015

Annie's first egg!

some multi coloured (and multi sized!) eggs, all from my ladies!

I'll be honest, I'm not a fan of naming livestock. It's just not my thing since I know that livestock is meant to end up butchered some day.

My parents on the other hand...

To be perfectly fair though, I guess laying birds could be an exception to this rule since they are expected to stick around longer than other forms of livestock... this is how my birds (all of the originals, the 5 new comers don't have names yet) got names. I'll have to clean them up a bit and get some photos, but for now you'll just have to imagine the crazy names they could have (they're not that crazy).

But the importance of the name thing is that Annie laid her first egg yesterday!

Annie is one of the 6 Ameraucanas chicks (they were about 4 or 6 days old) that I bought when I went to Thunder Bay to pick up my 6 laying pullets. One of the six didn't survive past the first couple months, and the other 4 turned out to be roosters (I still have them all too! I just can't give them up!). Annie (named by my dad) was attacked by the brown laying hens when she was pretty young and has been a very small chicken ever since (named Annie short for Anorexic by my dad... good name dad...).

When she was still fairly young (probably only a few months old) I was pretty worried about her, she was staying very small, stayed on the roost in the coop frequently through the day, and had a bit of a discharge from her beak. I never managed to find out what the problem was, but for a couple weeks I would put her alone in the chicken tractor for an hour or so in the morning and again in the evening and feed her scrambled eggs with pumpkin seeds and apple cider vinegar in her water. I don't know if this worked magic but she perked right up and after only a couple days of this she was out and about with the other chickens more, eventually she seemed 100%.

I think a result of the extra pampering turned her into a very friendly chicken. The roosters and laying pullets are still pretty skittish (as are the 5 new comers!) but that's ok with me... after all they are livestock, not pets... but Annie, she's like a pet. Before the fox had come and they were all free in the yard during the day when you went out, she came running and would stand at your feet looking up, almost literally saying "pick me up!"

Me and Annie

She's definitely a favourite for me, when the fox went through I was so relieved that she didn't get grabbed (apparently on the day I lost 3 in one go she went missing when Louise (one of my Orringtons) went missing but came strolling down the highway a little while later! I'm so glad I was at work an missed it all or I would have been out there all day looking for the little bugger!) I'll admit, this one is more like a pet... but now with the added bonus that she'll be paying some rent!

So don't be surprised if (when it drops to -40 this winter!) you come to my house and find her chilling in the living room with me.