It's chick time again! We decided to add to our tiny flock. We lost one chicken over the winter (RIP Sassy), and our other three hens weren't quite keeping up with the demand for eggs. I never used to buy more than a dozen eggs per week, but our home-grown eggs taste so much better than store-bought ones that my kids are constantly wanting more.
The good news is that according to Mother Earth News, eggs from hens that are allowed to free range are also more nutritious. They can have less cholesterol, less saturated fat, more vitamin A, more omega-3 fatty acids, more vitamin E, and more beta carotene. Our hens are free to roam around a fenced yard all day. We feed them organic chicken feed, and kitchen scraps, and even toss them the occasional stink bug or grub for them to gobble up. There are a few chores that come with the territory. The kids check for eggs, and help clean the coop and give them food and water. They also scoop the chickens up and hold in their laps while they swing, although not Hazel. She tends to peck.
So here we go again. The kids are in love and trying to resist the urge to name them too quickly. I'm cleaning the water dish 20 times a day, but really, other than that, the chicks are no trouble at all. I love watching how these little fluffballs fit into our messy lives. But come this fall, I'll expect some eggs, little ladies.