Last week we sent our last batch of chickens of the season to the butchers. In that batch there was one chicken that was really tiny, and would have been considered a Cornish game hen at best. So her life got spared and now she is in with the layers.
She is quite the sight. All the beautiful buff and red layers gather together and strut their stuff. The poor Cornish is an outcast in her stark white feathers. Chickens are very territorial and it took them about four days until they “accepted” her in their chick clique. Poor “Whitey” was not allowed in the roost where she wanted and was left alone all day. Sometimes chickens will attack a new chicken when it is introduced to the flock. Luckily, our layers behaved and just gave her the cold shoulder.
Whitey was afraid of everyone for awhile and wouldn’t let me take her picture.
Whitey has learned to escape the fenced in chicken area. She comes and goes as she wants. This has given her some clout among the flock. The fenced area is more to keep predators out and not necessarily keep the chickens in.
We we probably allow Whitey to grow up and become a “layer” hen just like the rest of the group. Cornish Cross chickens are not known for their egg production and she will most likely lay an egg every two days. Most layers will lay one egg a day. Due to the fact that her ear lobes are red, her eggs will probably be brown. It will be interesting to see if she ever “developes” like a true Cornish with large breasts, or if she will be more slim because she is on a different diet.
The other night, a racoon managed to get into the chicken house. We thought that he had eaten one of the layers, but thankfully, she was just out for a stroll. Maybe the electric fence doesn’t work all that well keeping anyone in or out?
Zweber Farms is a 4th generation family operated organic dairy. We are proud Organic Valley farmer members and sell our milk under that label. We also specialize in sustainably raised beef, pork and chicken and sell it directly to customers in Minnesota.Visit our website to learn more, www.zweberfarms.com