Oh, gentle reader, pray for me please, for, verily, I have lost what’s left of my mind.
The hatch of 3.0, my first, and shipped eggs of a difficult breed to hatch, to boot, went pretty much as expected, but not as hoped. As soon as I saw that I would have ten chicks, the laws of Nature and mathematics dictated that five of those will be roos; I will only be keeping one of each breed. This brings Heedley’s Hens up to fifteen, presuming no further losses, and, well…I have an itch.
While Ameraucanas and Marans lay lovely, unusually-coloured eggs, neither breed is known for high production. It’s great that we’ll have purebred hatching eggs come spring and lovely colour in our egg cartons, but pretty don’t feed the bulldog.
And, yes, I have 15-18 Kevin Porter heritage turkey poults coming in the final days of May, but that’s not quite scratching the aforementioned itch.
By now, you’re sitting back in your chair, gasping, the back of your hand to your parted lips…yes, gentle reader, yes. I just bought more hatching eggs.
But, wait! There’s more!! I ordered the eggs to coincide exactly with the arrival of the poults, hereafter known as T1.0.
This weekend, The Man will make the finishing touches on the crate in the coop, and C3.0 will move out of the house and in with their older sisters. Hilarity will ensue. This will leave the baby brooder in the house free for a thorough cleaning and new sand before the poults arrive. If the new hatching eggs are set at about the time the poults arrive, we can build the turkey house and stabilise the poults in two weeks, and get them into their new home in time for the newly-hatched chicks to move into the baby brooder.
By the time C3.1 is too big for the baby brooder, C3.0 will be integrated and roosting with the older girls, and C3.1 can move into the crate in the coop. Think I’m kidding? I have it all sketched out on the school calendar on the side of the fridge. I swear, it’s true, and those of you who know me know it’s true.
So…may I introduce you to C3.1?
I felt a need to pay homage to the girls I lost, my magnificent 1.0 girls. My first decision was to get more Plymouth Barred Rocks, in honour of the fantastic production I had from Coraline, Maisie, and especially Abby. These won’t be hatchery PBRs, though. Plymouth Barred Rocks are one of the oldest breeds in America, and there are breeders who have developed the finest heritage stock, going back many generations.
There are two important lines of heritage PBRs in America, and my eggs are coming from one of those lines, Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch. I just heard from Fred of Fred’s Hens, from whom I will be getting the eggs. Here’s a pic of some of my babies’ daddy (the eggs will be fertilised by two different cocks, for genetic diversity):
Is he not studly?!
I still find the occasional black and white striped feather around here, and they make me so sad. I look forward to having more Plymouth Barred Rocks here. Some really snooty ones.
And what about the second breed? I miss me some Buffy and Trixie. You know that. I know that you know that. You know that I know that you know that. How to have Orpingtons again, and still be du a gwyn?
Blue, Black, Splash Orpingtons, my dear, breeder quality, not from a hatchery.
The same lovely, affectionate personalities of my Buffy and Trixie, and broodiness, too, but much larger than hatchery birds. It will be like having feathered basketballs strewn about the yard.
So, now you are up-to-date with my insanity. The Man is in support of this insanity, by the way, but I don’t think he’s quite put together that two more breeds, if we’re , you know…breed them, means…two more roosters…