Thursday, March 6, 2008

Fooling Mother Nature

Here are 3 of our hens.

So we have been raising chickens for 7 months now. (Robin can’t stand that I talk about it or that it defines our family in any way.) We’ve learned a lot about chickens.

For instance did you know that hens have to have 14 hours of light to remain fertile? Well they do, so to keep our hens laying we used a light that kept the coop lit up for the missing hours of daylight needed. Our hens began laying at the end of November and were laying about a dozen eggs a day until a few weeks ago when the light went out. I’m not sure if we just didn’t believe it or wanted to try the above rule but we didn’t get another light. After about 10 days the egg production began to slow down a little more everyday until the hens weren’t laying at all. We put another light in about 2 weeks ago and they are back up to their previous production levels.

Obviously chicks wouldn’t survive in the winter and so Mother Nature has given the hens this natural reprieve. There is something so beautiful about that. Part of me doesn’t like that She is so easily sidestepped. I guess if we lived on the equator I wouldn’t even be thinking about this at all.

This is our rooster. He is very protective, which is why we keep him around.


Mindi said...

lana ordered us eggs thru the mail when i was 12 and we kept them in the basement with a light bulb and then they hatched and we sent them to a farm--i always thought it was so random!
now all you need is a cow and a pig and you are hooked up

Megan said...

That is something I didn't know. Very interesting! Thank you Rachel

I like your chickens

robin k said...

Love getting educated, Rachel.

Curtis Family said...

I love the knowledge that you have about all sorts of things. Who knew that hens needed that much sun light. I know I function much better with lots of sunlight!!!

Bundy 6 Pak said...

I love the sun, thus why we live in the valley of the sun! Umm...does nothing for me in fertile dept, though.