Tag Archiv: egg eaters

Graduation and not

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With school ending this week, there has been a graduation focus in the air.

The lambs are on their last week of bottle feeding. We are definitely ready for them to graduate.  I’ve been scratching my head about what to do with the leftover milk powder. Feeding longer is not the answer. My latest thought is Christmas. Little packets of milk powder tied up with a ribbon, a note attached about the glories of a milk bath. What teacher would not like that? Grandmothers. Aunts. Why not uncles and brothers?

Girl two graduated from kindergarten last night. She loves the stage so it was a good night for her, even if the school learned by experience why not to schedule an end of year function for 4 and 5 year olds to start at 7:30.  By the time they hit the stage at 8:15 they might as well have been drinking. They were three sheets to the wind, anyway. Whatever they had practiced was lost in short people wandering in circles and yammering to themselves, or shouting to the crowd depending on personality. Mine had a wrestling match for a microphone with another sweet girl in a fancy dress.

The only ones sent back for remediation this week were my husband and I. Last year, after an unusual number of losses, we swore off ANYTHING that would upset the meat birds. Fraternizing ducks had been an issue, but nothing we decided, would ever mix with them again. They bred to grow not to be robust.

Then I caught a chicken eating an egg the other day and threw her outside until I could deal with her. I was pretty sure she was eating an egg she had previously pecked open, but it was also possible she was eating the remnants of an egg someone else had pecked open. Why don’t we put her in with the meat birds overnight, I suggested to my husband. If there’s still an egg eaten tomorrow, we’ll know we have the wrong girl, if not, we can put her on the fast track for a different kind of graduation.

It was not a good idea. We had some worries that the meat birds might kill the suspect but it seemed safer than leaving her outside for the raccoons. It was a bad idea. The eighteen birds we put her in with did her no harm. She on the other hand, pecked one bird to death and left another one dead of a heart attack inside (we debate annually about using this breed or not due to the frequent heart attack issue).  And in case anyone is wondering, no eggs eaten the following days. For reasons we can no longer defend, we protected a lawless chicken from wildlife, then locked her up with some innocents so she could rack up a few murder charges for her rap sheet. Maybe we will pass our classes next year.

 

Poultry goings on

Successful jailbreak

The chicken egg eating problem has taken a turn for the better. Last summer Boy two was paid to park himself in the coop and catch the crook.  The offending bird was removed to chicken prison until her execution could be arranged. While there, she produced lovely eggs, which she did not eat. Meanwhile, inside the coop, eggs continued to be eaten. Boy two was sent back for free to be more vigilant. Soon we had two jail birds, both laying eggs they didn’t eat, and a coop full of chickens, also not eating eggs. After a few weeks, we returned the prisoners. Apparently jail time is a deterrent in poultry.

When egg eating resumed, a chicken, who may or may not have been one of the original felons was remanded to private custody. A few days later, a skunk dug under the fence of the prison and kidnapped her for consumption. We told the chickens what had happened, so the whole flock towed the line and things were ship shape. Somewhere in there we dealt with rats and started wondering if the chickens were all innocent – even the one in the belly of the skunk.

Winter came. Snow. Snow. Ice. Snow. Cold. Ice. Wind. Dark. The chickens stopped laying all but an egg or two a day, then started their way back up to normal production. A few weeks ago, someone started eating eggs again. It’s not just the wasted eggs that make me crazy, it’s the fact that the eggs we do get are covered in bits of hay glued on with egg yolk. A few days ago, I finally cracked (no pun intended, no egg yolk involved). Options were to try some of the many bits of available advice, or kill all the chickens. Both appealed, the first was more expedient.

Three part approach was as follows:  1. Added some extra protein to their diet. Their diet should be better than fine already, but just in case. 2. Put a golf ball in every spot they like to lay. Supposedly they get sore beaks pecking at the golf ball. I found that thought calming. 3. Blew out a raw egg and refilled it with mustard. Apparently they hate mustard. They go at the mustard egg and then are so turned off that they are not as keen about eating eggs.

Results:  Mustard egg was devoured in its entirety. No one has eaten an egg in two days. I am wondering what benefits their might be from feeding mustard eggs to children.