First, a disclaimer: nothing in this post is meant to discourage the keeping of poultry. Chickens are charming, ducks are delightful, poulry is fabulous and I plan to be keeping poultry of one sort or another for the rest of my life.
Right. So, that said, chickens are wacky, and a great deal of trouble besides. As the reader (I can not fathom that theres more than one) may remember, I began the spring with Ruby and Ester, two spring chickens who were delightful, if a little inconsistent in the laying department. Due to insufficient egg production, I added a third chicken, a Bantam who never really got a name. I had always heard how sweet and wonderful Bantys are, and they lay these lovely little light brown eggs. But this one somehow brought out homicidal tendencies in Ruby and Ester, which I found quite shocking. It also resulted in a complete stop to all egg laying by all concerned.
So, for a number of reasons, including the fact that I had really wanted Bantams in the first place, I sent Ruby and Ester packing. The Bantam was good at laying, but tried to scratch our eyes out whenever we entered the hen yard. She, in fact, flew into a panic whenever we came near the yard. We didn't dare let her out into the garden to eat slugs and weeds, as we had with Ruby and Ester, as we feared we would never get her back in. So there has been a slug festival going on in the garden, which has not been getting it's daily dose of organic chicken manure fertilizer, and I was feeling that I was taking my life into my hands whenever I went to collect eggs --I didn't dare let The Boy do it!
So, today we sent the Banty packing, and Ruby and Ester are back: Yay!