Over this past weekend, we acquired a second chicken coop and some new laying hens off of our local Craigslist. Have i ever mentioned how much i LOVE craigslist? i am always stalking it looking for dairy goats, laying hens, old barn wood, solar fencing supplies, hay etc. The farm and garden section is by far my favorite. :)
When we first went out to look at the coop, i was pretty excited about the coop itself. It is a good size, smaller than the one we have, but much more functional and ideal. It has a heating lamp, nesting boxes and heated water dishes. It's really cute too, looks like a miniature version of our house. Kenan is going to give it a coat of the same cedar stain we have on the house, and he has some scrap green tin to replace the roof (which is currently a red tin). i'll post more pictures once it is all set up. It is really a nice little chicken house.
i was also pretty thrilled that it was coming with 7 laying hens. Although we have quite a few hens already, we get very few eggs from them. The wild ladies are always hiding their eggs, and i very rarely find them until it is too late. My Bantam D'Uccle is the grandmother of the bunch. She hasn't laid in a few years. i also have a Barred Rock and Americana that are going on about 4 years and rarely lay, if ever. My Speckled Sussex is STILL BROODY! Poor girl, none of her eggs hatched and i eventually had to get rid of them (they were starting to stink) and she is still try to set.
So right now my only layering hens are the two Black Star hens and the White leghorn. The leghorn lays pretty consistently, but the other two...not so much.
So, i thought some introductions were in order!! This lovely white hen is my girl's new best friend. She is so tame, and has been following Sage around everywhere. She has no problem being picked up and carried around. She is a Delaware and such a sweet bird!
This lovely lady is a Buff Orpington. She is a large fluffy hen, with a very sweet disposition.
This crazy girl is a Polish. They are known for their crest of feathers. The kids absolutely adore her. She is also extremely tame, and you can walk right up to her and just pick her up.
This girl is rather petite and is already my favorite. She is about the same size as most of my wild birds, and has similar coloring, but her patterning is unusual. She is a Golden Campine.
This girl is enormous. She looks almost identical to one of my Black Star, but is about twice the size. She is a Black Australorp.
This beautiful girl is an Auracana/Americana. She has really nice colorings. She lays beautiful blue and green eggs.
Lastly, is the Cuckoo Maran. Marans are sometimes called Chocolate egg layers because of their Dark Brown eggs. She looks very similar to my Barred rock, but the patterning of her feathers is more blurred and not as crisp as on the Barred Rocks.
My Black Star and Black Australorp checking each other out. They look like long lost sisters.
After all of our years of having more rooster than hens, we are actually down to only two roosters. Gimli is the older of the two, but is disabled. My goat Delilah broke his hip when he was little, and although he is able to get around...he just can't keep up with the ladies. Junior was hatched out last summer. He has just starting to crow, and without any competition, he is in hen heaven. :) Here he is getting acquainted with the new ladies. He's been following them around and trying to court them. So far they have not been returning his affections, but i think they'll eventually come around. ;)
The very first day we had the new hens, we were already getting eggs! i'm loving the color variety!! It's been a couple years since we've had any green/blue eggs.
The new birds seem to be adjusting well. There has been a bit of the expected pecking order conflicts, but since the new birds outnumber (and outsize) my current birds they've been pretty much leaving them alone. i will post more pictures of the new coop once it is all set up.
i'm a week behind, but this post is part of the Rural Thursday Blog hop. Click the button below to see more posts on farm life, animals and rural living.