Layer of the Year 2012

February 1, 2013 § Leave a comment

Well it’s been a pretty traumatic and turbulent year. We began the year by losing Sasha, and ended with losing Katie. In between has been a blur of vet visits, home repairs, minor (and not-so minor) scares and the usual traumas that are part of being involved with animals. But we’ve also raised our own Cobb meat chicks (a full post to follow – soon, I promise!) and hatched another brood of heritage chicks (ditto!), and collected lots and lots of eggs.

How many eggs?

Quite a few: 1297.

Hard to look at that number and not be at least a bit impressed. Admittedly our flock is not exactly small, but still. Every egg is a reminder of how good life should be. And usually is. With that in mind, it’s time to announce who laid the most eggs over the course of the calendar year 2012. Drumroll please:

Hen Number of eggs Average weight Total egg weight
Ella 22 73 g 1615 g
Lily 92 62 g 5724 g
Poppy 91 63 g 6049 g
Claire 0 0 g 0 g
Neroli 18 59 g 1075 g
Katie 68 67 g 4602 g
Gabrielle 143 62 g 9027 g
Erica 190 58 g 11163 g
Holly 176 63 g 11102 g
Imogen 160 53 g 8523 g
Olivia 113 58 g 6581 g
Adelaide 113 50 g 5709 g
Dorothy 102 63 g 6504 g

So congratulations to Erica, last year’s runner-up. Yay Noodle! Over the course of the year, she laid thirty-four times her own body-weight in eggs (based on her weight as of 1.12.12).
Bloomin’ heck! No wonder she eats like a horse!

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In second place is last year’s number three – Madam Holly. Given her two brushes with prolapse, this is gratifying (and slightly worrying). And holding the line for the pullets, Imogen takes third place. All the more impressive when you remember that she effectively gave the hens a three-month head start. (Olivia, Adelaide and Dorothy were hampered by having been born four months later than Imogen, and coming up to point-of-lay age smack bang in the middle of winter. A six-month plus head start is just too much.)

Ella-eggs are still rare and precious, and Neroli seems headed that way. (Laying fewer eggs than Ella is not good). Never mind, we love her for her weebleness. Eggs are a bonus. Lily and Poppy are both performing reasonably well, given their age (both five) and their periods of broodiness. Given Katie’s sudden death, her comparatively low egg-tally suggests that there may have been some problem for quite a while – impossible to know, but the numbers are a bit suggestive. And Gabby continues to be Gabby – quietly and persistently productive. (When I say ‘quietly’ … she is a Dorking, so obviously I’m not talking about sound volume here.)

And then there’s Claire. Sigh!

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