Hazelville Hens

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Meet OWL…

Posted by Momma Hen on Jun-14-2010
 
Owl (June 2010)

We’re not sure what she is… maybe a rooster, maybe an OWL? We purchased Owl at Naomi’s Organic Farm Supply in April, along with 2 other Amercanas. Her coloring is really bizarre. Amercanas are usually golden colored, not grey and black. Her feet are also unusually large- which = rooster before. We’ll see what happens…and keep you posted.

All the teensters have been out in the coop for a couple days. They are a bit FREAKED out, spending the day inside the coop in the far corner, under the grid floor, where they will surely be pooped upon. We’ve tried to pry them loose several times, but they continue to huddle together in this one spot. This is all chicken logic based on old-hen-pecking order. I’ve kicked a couple of old-hen butts today & will continue with the boot until the teens are settled. Hopefully, they will venture out into the yard as the weather improves. Will keep you updated!

Cheers.

Momma Hen

Tweens!!

Posted by Momma Hen on Jun-6-2010

    

Hazel and a "thing-or-two"

Weather finally cleared today. A nice 75 degrees instead of that annoying , constant rain we have been tolerating for entire month of May. Whew! !! We finally could get the newbies out into the henyard. Setting the chicken tractor out in the run, we brought down the 5 younsters & set them up for the day. Oh Hazel was not pleased!  She circled the tractor with neck feathers raised and lots of hen verbage spewing forth…..  Am guessing that she’s  making it clear to the teens what to expect once  free of the cage and in our midst. (hmm, maybe something to be learned here. Note to self)  We’re back to the chicken logic, which I am never sure what I’m supposed to do about. Anyhoo, they’ll survive once we finally let them loose with the group- which by the way- will be in the dead of night, placing youngsters into the coop while it’s dark (heh, heh). They’ll be confused in the morning, but this much I do know. It’s safer this way.    

cheers!   

Momma Hen

New Sign…

Posted by Momma Hen on May-18-2010

Check out our new chicken sign…posted on our outer gate.  My niece Cassie sent this to me. Love it! We’ve got it in a spot that can be easily seen by all the cyclists that transverse up and down Springville, as well as motorists. Should bring a smile.  :^)

Upcoming coop improvement: We’re getting ready to re-do the coop roof. Our present roof-inner workings has become a bit too leaky in spots. Since we’re adding 5 more hens soon, the roof needs to be remedied.  Stay tuned for project pics!

Baby Chicks

Posted by Momma Hen on Apr-25-2010
 

New Hampshire Reds

We’ve got 5 new chicks to add to the flock!
 2 Amercanas (blue eggs) and 3 New Hampshire Reds.  They are growing at a fast clip in our brooder. Once they get big enough and the weather warms, they’ll be introduced to the rest of the girls. Tricky biz, as chicken logic comes into play. We’ll have them in the chicken tractor for a bit before letting loose in the hen yard. This will give everyone time to check each other out. Then, when all is dark, we’ll sneak the neebies into to the coop. Morning will bring some confusion, but they’ll work it out!
Cheers!
MommaHen

Hazelville Hens Logo…Mosaic

Posted by Momma Hen on Apr-11-2010

Hazelville Hens Logo

 

First, a huge shout out to my long time friend and most talented artist, Mary Beth Novak- whom designed and created our logo.
I recently completed a mosaic class, in which I recreated our Hazelville Hens logo in mosaic. Finally the weather warmed up enough to set the mosaic on the outside of coop. 

Coop

Whimsical or just weird….?

Posted by Momma Hen on Mar-22-2010

Elf door in chicken run

I ask myself this question everytime I’m drawn to something more to tuck into my garden. For example: Elf door on giant sequoia in chicken run. My sister, of course, gave me this door which I love. It goes to nowhere, but just seeing it there at the base of one of my favorite trees causes some amount of pause. It keeps my imagination humming. There are also windows to match AND a tiny suspended lantern (battery operated) available to match this tiny elf door.  (oh– there’s also a Holiday Elf door, complete with a festive wreath) I’ve been resisting getting these because it may further my weirdness with this whimsy thing I seem to share with my sister. There’s a fine line somewhere in there… I fear that my yard is evolving into a place where trees have faces, tiny doors leading into  imaginary lands where fairies flourish and squirrels talk, chickens with funny hats & hand-knit sweaters, bird houses painted in crazy colors, maybe even a tiny castle tucked under a columbine in my shade garden, only to be exposed when winter comes…  OK– fast forward 25 years. I’m now the weird old lady with the garden from some fairytale.  (if we want to keep Portland Weird, I’ll definitely be a contributor)  Parents with small children will make regular stops just to stare thru my fence.  A friend once told me, we don’t get old we just get more so. Oh well, so be it. I can’t hold out much longer without the suspended lantern or the windows to match.

Keep posted….am working on further chicken coop decor inspired by my awesome, most talented friend Mary Beth Novak. (famous artsy, ‘Martha -goes-Berkeley’  beat-nik officiode, loving parent to Scooter and sweetheart Olive)

Cheers!

Linda

Rogue Quail?? hmmm…

Posted by Momma Hen on Feb-27-2010

Saturday February 27, 2010

This morning I opened the nesting box to find the tiniest egg ever! (Image shows tiny egg against normal sized egg.)  Could a quail have snuck into the coop?? Truely, this egg looks like a quail egg. Comparing this tiny one to the gigantic blue egg I found a couple months ago (thought it was from a baby ostrich), and it all made me wonder about the mechanics of egg laying. Of course, I referred back to my latest ‘Backyard Poultry’ magazine, which had an article called ‘The Laying of an Egg, An Amazing Process’.  Just in case you’re interested, here’s a somewhat quick synopsis of said article. When a pullet (hen) starts life, her ovary contains the beginnings of all the eggs she will lay during her lifetime. Estimates range from 2,000 -4,000, but most hens lay about 1,00 eggs in their lifetime. The undeveloped egg yolks are clustered  along her backbone, approximately halfway between her neck & tail. Depending on the hen’s age & how long she’s been laying, the yolks will range from head-of-a-pin size to nearly full size egg. At any given time her body contains eggs at different stages of development. Approximately every 25 hours, one yoke is mature enough to move into the oviduct- they call this ovulation & it happens within an hour of an egg being laid. When the yoke is in the oviduct- which is 2′ long- it can be fertilized only if sperm are present, encased in layers of egg white, wrapped in  protective membranes, sealed within a shell and finally enveloped in a fast-drying fluid coating called bloom. (stop reading if this is too gross) Anyway, at the end of this process the hen poops out the egg. And-just so you are clear on this, yes, chicken poop does come out of the same opening but never at the time of egg laying.  One interesting fact about double yoke eggs. This occurs when ovualtion happens too rapidly, or if one yoke moves down the oviduct too slowly and is joined by the next yoke. Double yokers are typically laid by young hens before their production cycle becomes well synchronized. Sometimes an egg can contain more than 2 yokes. I haven’t seen more than 2 yokes with my hens, but apparently 3 yokes is not uncommon. The greatest number of yolks recorded is 9 in one egg. Wow! I definitely will post that if it ever happens here at Hazelville. Maybe we could gain some fame? (spot on Letterman) Maybe even some fortune? I’m totally down with that.

Cheers!

Momma Hen

Hazelville Hens