Over the week of Thanksgiving between the cooking and planning for Thanksgiving Dinner we completed a number of projects to make the chicken yard more efficient. We cut wholes in the bottom of 55 gallon trash cans and made them into feeders. I took food grade 5 gallon buckets and a 30 gallon water storage bin and made them into less messy waterers. And the biggest project involved removing the old handmade nesting boxes and installing new egg roll out nesting boxes to reduce the amount of egg washing time required. Now you may not know this about chickens but they do not like change. When I started messing with their nesting boxes you would think a coyote was in the hen house. They were very noisy and concerned. They were so distraught that many of the chickens had to shooed off the nesting box as we were hauling it away because they could not under stand why their favorite spot was being removed. They do not care that the new boxes are easier to clean, no shavings are needed and the eggs roll out to be easily collected so we do not have to disturb the chicken (or get pecked). Egg production has been ramping back up since we turned on the lights, We are up to 3 or 4 dozen eggs per day and as of Sunday ONLY 8 eggs per day are collected from the nesting boxes. The rest are everywhere else other than the nesting boxes. So far we are committed to the boxes and have made a few adjustments but the old box has been cleaned and stored in case we all decide to give up. The chickens may win this battle of wills.
The most recent steer has been dropped off and has a hanging weight of 700lbs. We will be picking up the cuts in about 2 weeks, The pastures have been rotated. Everyone's weight have been recorded and calving season has begun. So far we have had 3 heifer calves and 3 bull calves. This coming Sunday we will be at the Jersey Village Farmer's Market.