Wednesday, 22 June 2011

More eggs set

Yesterday I spent the day moving the young chicks into their new runs to free space in the poultry shed for another broody.

The cockerel to pullet ratio of chicks so far this year has certainly favoured cockerels, hence more hatching.

The Sussex chicks and the Partridge Welsummer chicks are now 4 1/2 weeks old and have been completely off heat since the weekend. Yesterday they were moved from the small 'A' frame ark in the garden to a larger house and run, within the pen the growers free range. They look so small in comparison to the 14 week old Barnevelders.

I believe all the Sussex chicks might be cockerels and only 2 of the 8 Welsummers are pullets. The Welsummers were to be the start of my new bloodline, so a little disappointing.

The Indian Game hen with her 6 Gold Duckwing Welsummer chicks, now 2 weeks old, have been moved into the ark in the garden and despite the frequent heavy showers are enjoying being outdoors. It is a little early for me to be confident of the sex of these chicks but I am hoping there will be a few females amongst them.

In the shed I now have a broody Maran sitting on 13 Gold Duckwing Welsummer eggs. She is a young hen and so far untried as a mother but she appears committed.

At the yard I have two broodies sitting on a mix of eggs from hens running with the Indian Game cockerel, these are purely for testing the fertility of the cockerel.

In the stable two more broodies are incubating turkey eggs. These eggs take a month rather than three weeks to hatch and both hens are doing an absolutely amazing job. Only a few more days to go.

If possible I would like to be able to fit in one more Exchequer Leghorn hatch before I call an end to this years breeding season.

Fertility and hatch rate has been very good, a few more pullets would have been nice.


  1. that is a shame about the ratios, i have only ever hatched 6 chicks and managed 3 of each.
    good luck with the next lot i llok forward to reading about them

    Gill (sevenofwands)

  2. Hi Gill thank you for 'dropping in ' :-)

    I guess it all works out even in the end..last year I was lucky to have more pullets than cockerels.

    It will just mean taking a little longer to build the flocks up...more chicks to hatch.

  3. Hi, I have pekins and 1 sabelpoot. Just wondered why you chose the breeds you have or was it just random?

    Nice blog

  4. Hi,

    The Welsummers I have always loved, beautiful birds, excellent layers of large dark and speckled brown eggs, happy in any enviroment. I hadn't come across Gold Duckwing, however, until last year when I was very lucky to be given a cockerel.

    My husband has always liked Leghorns (proper hens )so with have those.

    The Indian Game was always considered the best choice for crossing with heavy breeds for table birds and a breed my husbands family have kept for generations so seemed a natural choice but next year we are replacing the IG cockerel with a Barnevelder cockerel to see how they compare.