I struck gold when I checked the laying boxes in the chicken coop this week and found several eggs! Our flock of seven birds hasn’t given us eggs for a few months. Although chickens will typically slow down during the winter months due to decreasing daylight, ours have never completely stopped in previous years. For some reason they just haven’t seemed too happy after moving to our farm this year. Perhaps it’s the raptors flying overhead or the coyotes that come out at night, I don’t know. But hopefully they are out of their slump and we have gotten 8 eggs in the past 3 days. We have a variety of types of chickens, some laying brown eggs and some laying bluish green eggs. Some we bought as baby chicks and some we bought as adult layers. We don’t have any white egg layers so I will probably buy some at Easter so that we can color them.

Chickens are an interesting and entertaining lot and a small backyard flock is certainly something to consider. We first got chickens 7 years ago when we lived in the suburbs. After that several of my neighbors got them because they realized how fun they were and how good fresh eggs taste. Chicken manure is a good fertilizer for the garden and is high in nitrogen. Eggs are a good source of protein and a good gift for friends and neighbors just for being there. Chickens don’t like to be alone so if you get chickens get 2 or 3. You can set up a small run for them next to your garage. Do protect them though as they are prey to many animals including raccoons, foxes, coyotes, hawks, even neighborhood dogs.

There is a documentary I saw on TV once called “The Natural History of the Chicken”. This is a funny and serious look at the joy of chickens. Part of the movie focuses on a hen that wanted badly to be a mother. If you have chickens you will love this movie, if you don’t, it will make you want them.

Today is my brother’s birthday; Happy Birthday Corey!