It’s certainly exciting getting our first chickens! We’ve had them since last fall, and their all settled in; Enjoying our large backyard to their every whim before we build their new coop and run this spring, I’m sure they’ll have a few arguments against that.
I have to say, you hear from everyone that if you let them free-roam they are just going to destroy your yard and make it a mud pile! Well, we thought this great as there is a large portion of it that we want taken out to plant our garden area…problem being, they only ruin the areas THEY want to, not the ones you hope they do. Pretty obvious I guess, right?
So it goes, we’ll have a little repairing to do, and more work taking out the garden area than intended but so it goes! Were just happy to finally have them, our very own chickens!
We rescued six older ladies, their about 2-3 years plus is our understanding, through this winter we were getting between 1 to 3 eggs a day (though 3 egg days were pretty rare).
Typically at their age, their egg laying declines heavily, younger girls would be laying regularly one a day. To us though it’s just the thought that our very own chickens are giving us eggs which makes this all so wonderful!
When we got them the poor things had something called ‘Scaly Leg Mites’, so I researched high and low on how to help them and make them feel better. Most mites you suffocate with tiny particles of dust, which is why supplying a dust bath for your girls is very important to keeping them healthy and happy. These mites though are a different story, living on the legs and burrowing under the scales lifting them up, they need to be suffocated by completely coating them in an oil substance that won’t just get washed away.
We tried, olive oil, oil and tea tree, etc., and it just wasn’t doing it. Luckily for us, having only six chickens makes the ordeal of treating them a whole lot easier…I couldn’t imagine dealing with more! We finally came across the solution of using vaseline on their legs, as well as some warm water and soap soaks and light gentle scrubs to loosen the dead scales. Oh boy what a difference! We were relieved to notice improvements on most of them within a week, but some of the others were more persistent. Eventually, and finally, we were able to battle them gone… Phew!
From what I could gather, they get them from wild birds and where they were raised as well as us got plenty of those, especially making sneak attacks into the shed we converted into a temporary coop to steal some of our chicken pellets (we suspect). Hopefully with the new coop this won’t be an issue, but you never know I guess.
Little miss brown really enjoys it when we rake up the leaves! She even tries to help with her little feet 🙂