Chickens! I got another one.

When last we met to talk about chickens I had just got rid of 3 of the 4 chicks I bought in the spring.  Because 3 of 4 of chicks turned out to be roosters.  I blame all of this on the fact that, until I was 25 years old, my favourite food to order in restaurants was chicken fingers.

It’s your basic Rooster revenge I’m dealing with here.  You know, poultry karma.

It was such a struggle, to raise the chicks and then end up with a bunch of cockerels,  that the woman who sold me the chicks (she breeds a variety of heritage breeds mainly for their kaleidoscope of egg colours) told me she’d give me one of the pullets she raised this spring.

So a few weeks ago, I drove 45 minutes straight into the country to fetch Mabel.




Mabel is a Blue Copper Marans.  What that means is she’s a Marans (breed) chicken, and her colour is Blue Copper.  So her feathers are a blue hued gray with a ring of copper around her neck.  Only she’s missing most of her copper, which is why the breeder let me have her.  It’s the copper in the Marans neck that a lot of people think attributes to their very dark eggs.  Marans are known for laying dark, dark brown eggs, with some colours producing much darker eggs than others.


The Black Copper Marans (which is the type I bought in the spring) is known to lay the darkest of the Marans eggs.  And the Blue Copper Marans lays a slightly lighter, but sometimes speckled egg.  Speckles are pretty.  I’m O.K. with speckles. Unless they’re floating in my milk. And upon further inspection prove to be centipedes.

Please enjoy the beauty of Mabel.






In case you were wondering, Mabel is as soft as a kitten.




Her comb has healed nicely.  When she was first fully introduced to the other hens they tried to kill her.  It happens.  They chewed her comb.  It bled.  I put Wonderdust on it (stops the bleeding and masks the colour of blood) and after a few days they stopped picking on her and now she’s one of the gang.


You can see that hint of copper around her neck.



This is my very favourite part of every chicken.  The butt fluff.  I swear to God I could mash my face in there if it didn’t think it were so socially frowned upon.  And gross.


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Marans have orange eyes.




Mabel is a softie.  You can pick her up and walk around with her.  When she gets scared she’ll smash her head under your arm.  I like this.  I think it’s fun.  Unfortunately for Mabel because of this I do my best to scare her on a daily basis.




Like other Marans, Mable, my Blue Copper Marans has feathery legs and feet.  Just her outer toe actually.  Which is standard for the breed.




The day after I brought Mabel home she started laying eggs.  Always a good sign because it means she’s relaxed into her surroundings.  And it means I get eggs. The rest of the hens are moulting and not feeling like laying many eggs and the young hen I got in the spring (who you’ll be re-introduced to momentarily) won’t be laying for another month or so.





Because I took the egg photos outside they appear lighter in the photo than they do in real life. They’re a dark brown with speckles.



They’re good lookin’.


Speaking of good lookin’ it’s about time I introduced you (by name) to the one, single, Black Copper Marans spring chick that I got to keep.




Josephine is black and french.  Hence the name Josephine.  Partly for Napoleon and Josephine, but mostly for Josephine Baker.  Yes, I know Josephine Baker wasn’t French but France is where she became famous for being a world class ass shaker.

I believe that my Josephine will also become famous.  Also because of her great ass.




She’s a beaut this one.




Here you can see the beautiful copper ring around her neck.  This is what the ring around Mabel’s neck is supposed to be like, but isn’t.




And like Mabel (but hopefully not like Josephine Baker) Josephine has fluffy feet.




That brings my total chickens up to 5.  Two of them (Mabel and Josephine) will be my main egg layers, with the older chickens, Walnut, Cuddles and Cheez Whiz pulling up the slack with the few eggs they produce.  At 3 years old my original gals are moulting more and laying less.  In the first year, a hen lays almost every day.  By  year 3 they may go on a laying rampage of laying every other day for a couple of weeks and then close up shop for a couple of months without warning or reason.

In another year or two they’ll get a bit crankier, might not lay any eggs and will generally just lay around and eat lots of food.

In other words … they’ll pretty much become Roosters.

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  1. Kimberley says:

    Both Marans are just stunning. Congrats on the new addition! I’m glad Mabel was accepted. We’re still dealing with bully hens and it’s been months. I’m guessing at this point, there will never really be peace. Ah well. Enjoy the new egg bounty!

  2. Marsha Jean says:

    You have yourself a couple of real pretty gals! And, pretty eggs to boot…

  3. Terri says:

    Just beautiful! I thought Mabel was so pretty, then you show Josephine! I think that Mabel’s silvery feathers are so pretty, outlined in a darker grey… Josephine’s feathers are so pretty too, the dark teal is amazing! And the copper on their necks… I never thought chickens could be so pretty! And the eggs, awesome…. I bet they taste amazing!

  4. Becky says:

    How many picture did it take to get the right shot of the behinds??? My chickens will NOT hold still long enough to get good pics….. I have about 9000 pictures of blurry chickens.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Becky! I never have a problem with the bum shots. If you’re getting blurry photos, try taking the pictures in the lightest area of the yard possible. Full sun. Full sun doesn’t produce the nicest shots, but they’ll be the sharpest. The darker the surroundings, the blurrier the photo because the camera has to keep it’s little hole open longer to expose the subject properly. When it’s brighter out the hole opens and closes faster creating less opportunity for blur from movement in the subject. ~ karen!

  5. I wanted to be the first to congratulate you on your latest article, Mabel. I am sure hanging out with Leigh has nothing to do with more chickens either. She is adorable. Copper is a great color and would be a great name for another chicken too.

  6. Dana says:

    Anyone else notice that the hens are posing on a chopping block?
    They’re gorgeous.

  7. Janet says:

    Mabel and Josephine are beautiful and so are their eggs ! I have to say, I’ve never really wanted chickens until I started reading about yours. Unfortunately, because of this house having allergy sufferers, and the stuffy up- tight neighbors….I’ll just have to continue checking yours out. Thanks for sharing. They really are beautiful.

  8. Lisa Thomas says:

    So very beautiful! I’m jealous. I need some. Thank you for sharing.

  9. Kat says:

    I am awestruck… that is the only thing I can come up with to describe those 2 beauties!

  10. Anne says:

    When I was about 5, we had chickens, just plain white ones. I have two memories of the chickens. I would catch a hen and feel her butt feathers, she would go to sleep and I would carry her around for a big part of the day. You are right, those feathers are so very soft. I still like to feel fur; dog, cat or rabbit. I had to quit with the chickens as my father sold them – said he knew there was money in chickens ’cause he put it there in feed. My other memory: I went bare foot all summer and chicken poop does squish between the toes. Thanks for the memories, both soft and squishy!

  11. amanda says:

    you and Mabel just made me want a chicken. I (we) (my parents) had them when I was growing up, but now my husband and I live in a tiny beach house, and it’s probably not practical at all, but I wannnt one.

  12. Tracie says:

    I almost did not read this post, as I don’t have chickens. I have to say though, that Josephine is a looker! My Granny’s name was Olga Josephine, and oddly enough, I’ve always loved it. She also, was a looker! The colours on that chicken, wow! As for Mabel, she is pretty too, just not spectacular like my Granny. I mean, like your chicken. Wow, that was awkward.

  13. Christy says:

    Mabel is perfect and sounds precious. Josephine, she’s gorgeous and pretty sure she knows it. Can you tell I have a soft spot for the under dog, the runt of the litter, etc? Glad they are all blending together. The mix of eggs is very pretty.

  14. Hazel says:

    Mabel is the best chicken name ever. My first two hens were Maude and Mabel. Maude was feisty (aka Marauding Maude) but Mabel was like the hen in Chicken Run that just keeps knitting.
    I like the name so much that one of my dogs is now called Mabel. I’m not allowed to use Josephine as it’s the name of one of my daughter’s friends.

  15. Denise Leavens says:

    I AM enjoying the beauty of Mable! Wow. She is beautiful. As are her eggs. Scrumptious color, speckles and shape. (Don’t ya love the way hen eggs just nestle in the palm of your hand?) Mable’s propensity to snuggle into you when scared is just adorable. I have a 17 pound black cat that does the same!

    And my, oh my! Josephine is absolutely regal looking. Thank you so much for the lovely pictures, my dear.

  16. dana says:

    They are both beautiful! I love the speckled eggs Mabel lays. Lies? Whatever. That gray color is really pretty. I learned a couple of things from this post. One is that chicken butts are spotless and fluffy. The second is that I enjoy looking at chicken butts. We all have our things. :0

  17. Jay says:

    Lovely looking chickens, Karen!

    My eldest hen, Rita, will be 7 this winter. Although she’s slipped down the pecking order from queen bee to a mid-level dowager duchess and is in her post-menopausal years she’s still a much loved pet.
    I hope Chuckles and co have a similarly long life

    • Pati Gulat says:

      Her name is Cuddles… 😉 And she is probably the only chicken in existence that, at one time, had the whole world praying for her health… 🙂

  18. Penley says:

    I think they’re both equally as beautiful! I’ve got chook-envy. We’re not in a position to really get any chickens just yet, we’ll be demolishing and building a new house soon-ish so it’s not really feasible just now – which TEARS ME UP – so I have to live vicariously by your wonderful chickens. Sigh…

  19. Catherine says:

    Beautiful chickens. I’m getting chicken envy too. When I move house I will have room for chickens……. Especially pretty ones.

  20. Grammy says:

    Mabel is beautiful, as are her eggs. So happy that you got a replacement for the three roosters.

    Josephine is exquisite. I have no doubt that Josephine Baker would be very pleased at such a gorgeous creature being named for her. Really, every inch of that hen reminds me of the beauty, strength and grace that human black beauty was.

    I never realized how adorable chickens asses are. Now I do. Thanks.

  21. Jenny W says:

    Hi Karen, I’m in Looove with Fuzzy Chicken Butt Now 🙂 I have a couple of questions for you – I live in the Maritime Provinces, and we have Really Rotten Winters. What do your girls do in the cold, snowy, “Polar Vortex” months? Do they roost all day? How cold is too cold to go outdoors, and what kind of heater do you use in the coop? Silly questions, but a girl with Chicken Dreams needs to know!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jenny! There are two things that are really bad for chickens. Dampness and heat. The cold they can deal with. In fact they prefer the cold to heat. They actually like to leave the coop and romp in the snow in the winter. Last year was the first year I decided I had better get a small heater for their roosting area so they wouldn’t get frostbite. It was the most brutal winter in memory. So I got a small ceramic, wall mounted heater for their roost that comes on automatically. I don’t have it set to very warm, in fact I only have it set to keep the coop above freezing. The other important thing is to make sure, no matter how cold it is outside, to have ventilation in their sleeping area. Like I said, humid/damp air is what will kill them. I have narrow windows across the front and sides of their roost. Their respiratory systems can’t take it humidity and they’ll get sick if they don’t have ventilation. Dream away chicken girl. ~ karen!

  22. Jaime says:

    Well…I guess that answers my question about whether you regret getting chickens. Enjoy!

  23. Debbie D says:

    Both girls are gorgeous! Can’t wait for more chicken updates!

  24. Kim C. says:

    Beautiful gals! Brings to mind that ZZ Top song…She’s Got Legs. 🙂

  25. Robin says:

    Those are two nice birds Karen Mabel is a beauti though I hope she keeps producing those outstanding eggs for you

  26. Pati Gulat says:

    They are beautiful, Karen ! My very first pet EVER was a Rhode Island Red. She was very tame, almost like Cuddles. My sister just got chickens recently and she and my 78 yr old Mom put together a chicken house and yard. She got pullets; Rhode Island Reds and Barde Rocks . My mom is THRILLED OUTTA HER EVERLOVIN’ MIND ! LOL ! LOVE your Marans !

  27. Tori says:

    Oh my god… did that really happen with the milk and many legged things? I can’t even type the word, I am highly phobic of those things. I would probably cry and pass out if I found one in my milk.

  28. marilyn says:

    ahh they are so pretty..and i love their names!

  29. Su says:

    Hello Mabel and Josephine!! gorgeous gals!

  30. Tigersmom says:

    What beautiful girls! I never knew how pretty chickens could be. I think it’s a testament to how generally happy your chickens are that they accepted the new girls so quickly after the initial rejection attack. Still loving those Clydesdale ankles.

    The hiding of the head in the arm is very endearing. I’ve had a cat that did it and my Corgi does it if its really stormy outside. Corgis also have amazingly fluffy and round butts that are irresistibly adorable, especially in winter when they have their thicker coat. Plus, their butts work buttonholes when they walk like a 1940’3 bombshell climbing a staircase in front of a man they like. Baaaa – bowwww, Baaa-bowwww, Baaa-bowwww. Just like that.

    • Karen says:

      LOL. Bombshell Corgis. 🙂 You have Corgis? How very royal of you. ~ karen!

      • Tigersmom says:

        Just one Corgi. We’ve had her for about 3 years and she’s full of attitude. She’s the royal one.
        Our other shedding machine, I mean dog, is a Great Pyrenees and a Saluki mix rescue. So, we truly have a pair of opposites: a tall thin leggy blonde and a short, fat and decidedly NOT leggy, but sassy redhead.

        • Tina says:

          I am very curious. What does a Great Pyrenese and Saluki cross look like?

          • Tigersmom says:

            Well, Tina, she’s quite a babe really. She is very tall (bigger than a Labrador ) and leggy and her build is like that of a slightly stockier saluki or greyhound. She has the Pyr shaped head and ears but with the longer hair of a saluki all over and not just on her ears and tail. Her tail curls up over her back and has even longer, (longer than mine) hair that reminds me of ostrich feathers in the breeze. And her eyes are black rimmed so she always looks like she’s rocking a smokey eye. She is mostly a creamy white with a couple of large fawn colored patches (two pale ones on her face around her eyes and two darker ones on either side of her body) and has black tips on her ears and a little punk rock black stripe that goes around the end of her tail near its base. Hope that paints a picture for you.
            If not, maybe Karen will give us another opportunity to send her pics of our pets. I think I can figure out how to do it this time.

            • Karen says:

              I love Saluki’s and I don’t think I’ve ever seen one in real life! And I love Great Pyrenees. So I’m pretty sure I’d like that dog of yours. ~ karen

  31. Tigersmom says:

    Oh, and I love the new girls names.

  32. Tracey says:

    OH MY GOSH….Mabel and Josephine (which my iPad spell check changed to moose phone) are stunningingly BEAUTIFUL!!!!
    Ah, I can just see Mabel burrowing her head in your armpit…so adorable
    The pictures are stunning….but I have a feeling they are even more spectacular in real
    Pretty eggs. Either you have really tiny hands, or those eggs are huge!
    Like my father in law told my husband many years ago…….”never marry a woman with big hands son”
    Sorry…that egg picture just reminded me of that…..

  33. Mary Kay says:

    Karen – I just love, love, LOVE your chickens – it is poultry porn. Mable and Josephine are beautiful! I wish I could have poultry porn in my backyard.

  34. Jody says:

    Lovin’ the new girls. They look like they are wearing bell bottom pants. Very groovy.

    If three of the girls are molting right now are you planning a craft project with all those feathers any time soon?

  35. They really do have nice butts! Gorgeous eggs.

  36. Angela says:

    I’m curious…what do you do with all the eggs? A person can only eat so many omelettes!

    • Karen says:

      Well when I for got the chickens a few years ago I had a TON of eggs and gave a lot away to neighbours and family. Now I don’t actually get enough to give away. I just have enough to get me through my normal egg use. Once the chickens stop moulting and there’s a chance I’ll have extras I’ll give them away again. Or make the world’s largest souffle. ~ karen!

  37. Ruth says:

    Mabel is beautiful. I have definitely never seen hen feathers in that hue. Love it!

  38. Cred says:

    Your hens are beautiful. But I really love the blue feathers of Mabel. Never considered keeping pretty chickens but now I want to.

  39. Gina says:

    Question: What do you do with all the eggs??

  40. Rebecca says:

    Mabel is beautiful! I love how she looks marbled.

  41. Karol says:

    No chicken envy here, but I do enjoy reading about yours. Who knew chickens were mean girls! My sister has 5 chickens and a rooster, and I swear, he stares straight into my eyes when I’m near his girls. I also swear I can hear him say “I will CUT you!”
    Yes, I’m scared of foul.

  42. chana says:

    Gorgeous chickadees!

  43. Robin says:

    “In other words … they’ll pretty much become Roosters.” hahahahahahahahaha!

  44. Brenda says:

    waiting for the spectacular craft you will make with those gorgeous feathers!

  45. Marion says:

    They are so beautiful and I like the names! But what happened to Norma? You always had 4 chicks, right?

  46. Leigh says:

    Congratulations on your lovely new girl!
    I’ll have to take your lead and post more chicken butt photos!
    Perhaps I’ll do some lovely chicken butt illustrations soon. 🙂

  47. maggie van sickle says:

    Mabel and Josephine really are beautiful.. You are a really good Mom Karen your chickens are so healthy looking. Have fun with the new one.

  48. Jodi T. says:

    They are all so pretty!!! Can’t wait to see a group photo of the whole family!

  49. Laura Bee says:

    Lovely ladies, Mabel laid those eggs because she knows you love her already.
    That third picture, all I could think was “OOhhh fluffy butt!”

  50. jainegayer says:

    Mabel is so pretty and I love that you carry her around and scare her just so she will cuddle into you.
    And Josephine! Wow! What a looker! I remember seeing a B&W photo of Josephine Baker wearing nothing but feathers. I think they were fans. I’m sure your Josephine will do her namesake proud.

  51. Cathy Reeves says:

    That’s not a chopping block; it’s their pedestal!
    Your gals are so gorgeous, Karen.
    Heh, …butt fluff….

  52. kari says:

    I love your chickens and their names! My daughter is Camille Joesphine, we are not French either, but she is a spitfire and so it suits her perfectly! I love a fluffy chicken bum photo and a good chicken name! kudos!

  53. wendy says:

    Despite the fact that I find chickens somewhat disturbing (all birds actually–something to do with the cold eyes and relationship with dinosaurs), I seem to have fallen in love with Mabel upon first sight. She may not have the exotic beauty of Josephine, but she has something. Maybe it’s because I love the name Mabel . . . or maybe I like the idea of some little creature burying its head in my armpit. In any event, she is absolutely lovely.

  54. Ev Wilcox says:

    The eggs are as pretty as the chickens! Josephine and Mabel are gorgeous. Glad the other ladies have now allowed them into the inner circle. Also, really glad that cuddles is well now. Thanks for the great photos!

  55. Bols says:

    They are both very pretty. One of my greyhounds was called Mabel (she came with the name), I mostly called her Maby Baby.
    I really like the hint of teal on Josephine’s black feathers. The eggs are very pretty, too.

  56. Leslie says:

    Really pretty eggs from a very pretty bird. I love the blue color.

  57. Melissa in North Carolina says:

    Welcome to the family, Mabel and Josephine. They are certainly beatiful girls…especially those fluffy chicken butts. OMGOSH, how cute! Go ahead, in the privacy of your own coop, experience it.

    Now I know why you have gone through all this for those beautiful eggs. Amazing! Thanks for sharing.

  58. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    They are both so pretty Karen..I never saw a blue chicken before..

  59. Jackie says:

    Karen – Thanks for sharing your babies with us. I’ve never had chickens & never knew much about them. Thanks for teaching us about them. I just love the names you come up with. Good luck to all of you.

  60. Stacy says:

    Left field question… Speaking of molting… Do you ever save some feathers? Would you ever mail them to readers/sponsors?

  61. Mary Werner says:

    Those Eggs! Are they coppery dark brown with PURPLE spots or is it just my screen? The iridescent feather colors are mesmerizing! I miss my chickens so much. The soft cooing noises they make when searching for bugs and seeds are so beautiful to listen to. Makes up for the show off bragging squawk when they lay an egg.

  62. Pat Kichinko says:

    I am a Crazy Cat Lady, born and bred. I’m down to just nine cats now, but I’m still a card-carrying C.C.L. However, after seeing these beautiful chickens, I have made a place in my heart for them. Notice: I said heart, not stomach. While I do like my chicken dinners, these beautiful ladies need only grace the earth with their presence.

    In other words, I love Mabel and Josephine.

  63. Elen Grey says:

    Josephine after Josephine Baker. Love that.

  64. Meg says:

    Yeah part of my escape plan from the terrible grind and collapse of the VFX industry is definitely home in the country — with chickens. (Among other critters. Like a pony?) I’m curious – besides just hanging out with them for companionship, how much time do you actually spend on chicken “maintenance” generally?

  65. Angie S says:

    They are absolutely gorgeous, and I’m in complete agreement, both of your ladies have amazing butts!!!

  66. Your girls are so beautiful!! Seriously, how did you get them to pose?? They look like supermodels! I can’t wait to have chickens of my own!

  67. LazySusan says:

    Both Josephine and Mabel are absolutely gorgeous! Josephine, with her almost iridescent feathers, looks so regal, but so does Mabel with her storm-tossed coloring, and she DOES look sooooooo soft, you can almost feel it just looking at the photo! And the eggs she lays! Those are some pretty amazing eggs. They look HUGE, but part of that is probably you’re little hand size. Do you let them roam your property freely in nice weather? I can’t remember if you’ve ever said whether or not you do, but I do think the fence encloses the back yard, otherwise why have to heft that cabinet over it!

  68. Ruth Vallejos says:

    Lovely girls both!

    I understand your compulsion about the butt fluff – I have the same problem with baby toes (SQUEEEEEEEE!). We both must endeavor to act within social norms. (Hah!, Like that’s gonna happen!)

  69. Shauna says:

    They’re stunningly beautiful. LOVE! All three of my chickens are on strike. The two older ones (and by older I only mean 2 years old or so) are moulting, the third is much younger and should be laying quite well, but she lost her sister awhile back. I honestly don’t think that’s it anymore. I mean, c’mon, chickens aren’t that smart, they can’t remember months back that something bad happened. I think she’s just on strike because the others are too. I’m thinking about putting a plastic egg in the nesting box, just to remind them what they’re here for. I know the days are shorter and all that, but it’s not like it’s cold here, or even overcast. It’s sunny San Diego for heaven’s sake. They can lay an egg once a week at least! I haven’t had an egg in over a MONTH! We may have to, gasp, buy eggs!!!

    • Karen says:

      I have a light come on from 5 a.m. to 8 a.m., but it gets dark here at 5. 12 hours isn’t quite enough sunlight for them to lay so I’m thinking of extending it an hour or so into the night too. Just not so long that when the light goes out they’re stumbling around in the dark not being able to find their roost, lol. ~ karen!

  70. Bernadette says:

    I must say, Mabel is a beauty. Even if her copper ruff is unsatisfactory. I hope she lays the shit out of her speckled eggs and shows that breeder what she’s missing. How is our Cuddles doing? I haven’t heard anything to indicate her health isn’t up to par. I’m glad she clucked through.

  71. Barbie says:

    Beautiful Chickens, Beautiful Eggs, Beautiful Asses! You had me at “I got another One”

    I smiled and giggled all through this one! So happy for you!

  72. Mike says:

    I came here to read about chickens, not centipedes in milk. Holy crud, please tell me that’s not something that has ever happened.

  73. Gretchen Sexton says:

    I really can’t add anything new to the comments–but I just have to let you know that this fan of yours is simply blown away by the beauty of these birds and the spectacularness of your photos!

  74. Mindy says:

    I love Mabel. I don’t know what it is, but I love her.

  75. peg says:

    love all the photos,but the butt pics are soooooooooooooooo cute 😀

  76. izzy says:

    I love your chicken updates! Please keep them up!

  77. Marion says:

    Wow they are beautiful! Mabel sounds like a definite charmer, and I’m expecting a video of Josephine shakin’ her stuff!!!

  78. Danny says:

    It’s hard not to notice that I am one of the few dudes among your readership. Not sure why, I’ll leave that to a focus group. I know chickens are cuddly, and make great pets etc…..but I’m wondering, do you eat your chickens?

    • Karen says:

      There are a few dudes around here. According to my stats there are more than anyone thinks. They just don’t comment. They probably feel outnumbered so good for you for pushing your way in. I do not eat my chickens. Mainly because they are pets. They have names and personalities and I know them. I do on the other hand eat chickens whose names I do not know. And I just try very hard not to think about it. ~ karen!

  79. kardan says:

    They are both gorgeous Karen. Mabel looks so soft and sweet. Josephine not so much, but she is beautiful.

  80. Cussot says:

    I just love how their feet look like tarnished silverware.

  81. They are absolute stunners.

  82. Michele says:

    Thank you for the introductions to your newest chickens. They are beautiful. I, too, think that the fluffy butts are gorgeous!

  83. She’s a beautiful girl congrats! And a bonus that she’s already laying. Is your other marans chick laying eggs yet? I’m hoping my black copper marans start laying eggs this Spring. I’ve been documenting their and my easter eggers growth since Day 1

    • Karen says:

      Mabel (the blue Marans) stopped laying after about 2 weeks, lol. As soon as the days got shorter and the other chickens went into yet another moult she closed up shop. The black one should have started a couple of weeks ago, but coming into lay at this time of year probably screwed things up for us a bit. I’m doing my best to make sure they have full crops by the time they go to bed so they have more energy for feathering an laying. I’ll have a look at your girls later! ~ karen

    • Karen says:

      Just took a quick look. GREAT photos of the chicks Paula. I for one know how hard they are to get, lol. ~ karen!

  84. june2 says:

    Not sure if it’s true but have heard that introducing a new hen to the coop works best if you slip them into their own new nest at night when it’s dark and the other hens are already in their nests. When the flock wakes up the next day, they accept her as if she’d always been there. Might be worth a try. Got that tip out of chef Gabrielle Hamilton’s memoir: Blood, Bones and Butter, a great book!

    • Karen says:

      Hi June2. I’ve read that too (both the book and the tip) and I don’t really think it’s true, lol. Chickens aren’t stupid and if they wake up and there’s an extra one they’re gonna know it and they’re gonna attack her. Mine integration lasted about 2 weeks, starting with just keeping the new hen within sight of the older hens. As they got used to each other I exposed them to each other for longer and longer periods. If I had just stuck her in the coop one night I’m sure she would have been nothing more than a carcass by the time I found her in the morning! Chickens are pretty vicious. Loved that book btw. ~ karen!

  85. Lucie says:

    I love chickens with fur pants.

  86. Jennie Lee says:

    Your chicken, Josephine (Baker) reminded me of my pet turtle, Etta (James) and the hamster I used to have, Isadora (Duncan). Finding just the right name for a pet is such fun!

  87. Karen says:

    I totally relate with your angst. I have nine chickens, I had ten but one hung herself, not sure if it was assisted by other members of the flock or not?, and decided to get a few more. I usually get a few every couple years so that I always have different ages, and I REALLY wanted some Blue Marans. I paid a fortune for them and got talked into a lavender tailless Araucana. Two weeks later and it looks like the Marans are all Roo’s and the Araucana is the most rooster like of all of them, but I have to wait five + more weeks to see if it actually is. Now I spend my days thinking of ways to give these roosters to unsuspecting people;)

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