A second clutch for Poppy

February 9, 2012 § Leave a comment

In complete contrast to the usual way things happen, within the space of five days Poppy has gone from starting to think broody thoughts to actually sitting on eggs.

When Sasha first had her prolapse, one of the bits of advice we came across was trying to force the affected hen into a broody spell – ideal, really, since you want them to be very quiet, away from other birds, and to have as little cloaca action as possible (a broody hen doesn’t lay, and only has a poo every 24 to 48 hours). Given how awful the results of Poppy’s previous clutch were, we decided that a couple more bubs would be a good idea. So on Saturday (4/2/12) when Poppy seemed to want to stay in the house, even after laying, we began to contemplate possibilities. On Sunday we tested her a bit – shutting the pophole to the house, and seeing what her reaction was to it being opened again (a broody beeline).

The next test was finding someone with fertile eggs to sell. This late in the year, almost everyone is giving their breeders a break. Plus we needed to get a breed (or breeds) that would be good eating (for the cockerels) and reasonable layers (for the girls). We also didn’t want to have to get anything from too far away – when the fertility is likely to be ebbing anyway, you don’t want to add any extra factors against viability. Sunday afternoon was therefore spent trolling the internet and sending emails to various breeders.

As feared, we got a lot of “sorry, finished for the season” responses, until I sent an email to the lovely Fionna at Appleton’s. We were in luck; she had eight (two coro sussex, three barred rock, and three buff sussex), and would be posting the next day. Having had good results from her eggs the year before (Poppy’s Horde), we said yes please. So Monday saw the money change hands (well, banks), and the eggs consigned to the courier. I had a tracking number to check, and Fionna expected them to be with me by the end of the following day …

The eggs arrived at 7.30 on Tuesday morning. And because she is a darling of the first order, Fionna had even tucked an extra Barred Rock egg in!

Below in the table is the list of all the eggs, with details about their weight and so on.

Egg Weight Comments (image)
BS1 72 g very round!  
BS2 69 g very round, with freckles  
BS3 67 g also very round  
CS1 57 g small and tinted, but the shell looks solid enough  
CS2 54 g small and tinted and ditto  
BR1 67 g  very lightly tinted, good shell  
BR2 66 g very oddly elongated shape  
BR3 59 g almost white in colour, maybe a bit thin shelled?  
BR4 61 g shell not as thick as the others, but probably ok  

So now it’s just a matter of waiting.
Poppy won’t know what to think!


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