Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Light Came On!

Short but useful post for those raising feathered friends in the dark of northern winter. My hens, since October had not laid ONE egg. They had molted, clucked, grown up, grown out. They received lots of feed and love, but nothing was comin' our way. I consulted a local hen-raiser extraordinaire (she actually trains her hens to load up in the truck after a day on the range!) here in the feed store one day.

She asked gently, had I:
-given them plenty of feed full of protein, phosphorus and calcium,
-given them plenty of fresh water daily,
-given them alfalfa hay,
-let them out to graze,
-made sure there were no pests, or sickness...


I was feeling good, but discouraged. What was left? Was I stuck with a bunch of retirees, (we have a no-kill policy at our house, also known affectionately as "Jake's Chicken Spa")? Did I get a bunch of cross-dressing roosters? I needed eggs! I needed the high-standing, deep-colored, tasty eggs!

Then, she asked about a light. Why yes, I have a red light on in the coop.

Ah! White light, she says, you need a white light!

I had I left the red light in the lamp from when they were chicks and it was TOO calming. They needed 12 hours of bright, white light. Within 48 hours, I had six eggs and six eggs a day since!

We are saved! Rather, THEY are saved!

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