This is Oprah and Carlene this May.
This is Carlene our Araucana/Americana hen, last week. The Easter Egg hen who lays green-blue eggs. Also known as the crazy hen, the psycho hen. She's been our least "friendly" bird in five years. We got her and Truffles as day old chicks and raised them in the house till they were ready for the barn. She started molting about two weeks ago. All of a sudden there were clumps of feathers all around.
Problem is that she only lays eggs about half of the year and now that she is over three, she has begun to molt early and we haven't seen a green egg in weeks. This year we barely got a green egg in time for Easter. Yes Easter was early, but that's a long lay off while getting fed good feed. When we did get her eggs, they were great hard boilers because they peel so cleanly. I was going to keep the two Araucanas but at this rate, since no one is laying already, I have to consider replacing all five little beaks. I was just going to get four more Bovan Hybrids next month, but now I may consider other new breeds, or just find a couple more Araucanas.
When we started with hens five years ago, feed was $7-8. It has doubled. The price of eggs has not and my prices were only break even. Not anymore. And the price of replacements has gone up too. I think my first four Bovans cost pennies over $4.00. Now I hear they are $5.75 each.
But if I am feeding five hens and getting no eggs already, their time has come. I'm hoping to find someone that wants hens to clean up their yard or for a stew. They are funny animals, but they are not pets. Spoiled and free range - truly free - but I think we'll let them go if we can get someone to take them.