We have an egg! The first egg that one of our lot ever laid. What great excitement in our house.
There have been a few more sagas since I last posted about the chickens.
Our new Jack Hen had a prolapse a few days after we got her, I was devastated. When I went to collect the egg there was blood on the egg and in the nesting box. I went to try find Jack Hen and she had blood on her bottom. I was going to show you a picture but The Geek has saved you all, he says you may be sensitive viewers.
I could not see much with her running around and Titus was niggly that day so I could not put him down and try look closer until The Geek got home and could help. He caught her and held her under his arm while I had a look and tried to clean her up.
When we did look we saw she had a prolapse, which basically means that part of her inside egg laying passage had come out when she laid the egg. We cleaned and disinfected it and I tried to push it back in. Poor Jack Hen was not happy obviously so she was fighting a bit which meant that as soon as I had it in she would tense up and wriggle in The Geek’s arms and pop it out again.
The prognosis, from all I read on the web was grim, the concensus was that once it happens once it happens again and usually you have to cull the bird. They said that other chickens can be a bit canabalistic and if their is blood they may peck at it and to remove her. I had not see the 2 fat chickens peak her at all during the day but we cleaned it and seperated her for the night in a box inside. The idea with the box was also to try limit her movement and food and try to stop her laying for a few weeks. The advice on line was to give them food rations just enough to keep them alive but to stop them laying and keep it dark and quiet. The trouble was that she would probably already have an egg ready for the next day so it might take a while to stop her laying and each time she did it would get worse.
Next morning, low and behold the prolapse had gone in by itself and she was letting us know very very voally what she thought of being in a box. By mid day I decided that she wanted to be out and it looked okay so to let her out, as she was probably going to lay anyway. Then if it prolapsed again we would box her in the dark and see if it helped. Against all odds she laid that day and NO prolapse! WhooHoo I was so happy. The thought of losing another of Caleb’s chickens was just too terrible to think about. I am happy to say that she lays about 5 out of 7 days a week and has had not repeat prolapse.
This brings me to the other 2 chickens, the big white broilers, the only ones left from the original lot. I was beginning to think that maybe they were rooster too. One has a comb a bit bigger than the other, but they are plumper like hens. It has been 5 months since we got them so we were expecting eggs or crowing soon.
Yesterday Rachel collected Jack Hen’s egg from the nesting box. Caleb was walking around the garden and shouted from the sandy patch near the braai where the chickens like to sit, that Jack Hen had laid another egg. When he brought it over I saw it was a very small egg. When chickens first start laying their first eggs are often smaller. So seems like one of the big fat girls is also laying at last. Which one I am not sure, and I do wish she would rather use the nesting box but I am not going to complain too much.
We are getting 3 new KoekKoeks soon and Rachel is coming around to the idea that if we don’t name chickens and she knows that the roosters will be eaten then she is okay with it. I hope this is true when the time comes