Friday, January 3, 2014

Chicken post

I raise a small flock of backyard chickens so from time to time I will post about them. I only have 7 at the moment down from 10. We had 2 die from sickness and one from a dog attack. Others were attacked as well but they didn't get hurt as badly and were able to live on.

I've had a broody hen for about 2 months now that I just can't break so I decided to just let her hatch out a few eggs. Only way I can figure to break her of it. A broody hen for those that don't know is a hen that will sit on an egg until it hatches, it doesn't even have to be eggs really. I'm not sure why this one isn't coming out of it really. She should have, and I had given her a clutch of eggs but one night I wasn't feeling well so I had the mister go out and put them away for the night and he didn't know to check the nest. Sometimes she either gets it wrong or another hen will push her out and she will just go to another nest.

That nigh she did not sit on her nest. So when I candled the eggs, which is basically putting a light source on the eggs in order to do a type of ultrasound I found that the eggs had died. They had gotten too cold.

I tried to give them another test in an old farmer method where you float the egg in warm water, an egg that has an alive fetus inside will wiggle. Those eggs all fell straight to the bottom which is a really bad sign.

So I opened them up and found 2 fully formed fetus' that probably would have hatched in the week and a few that were not as formed and either died early or were at different stage in development as some hens were laying in her nest when she would get out for water.

It was very sad, but I plan to buy some baby food jars and get some denatured alcohol to make wet specimen jars to display them in my house. I will post pictures when I have completed that task. Might sound odd, but you will find that I'm not your average woman and I never really want to be.

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