Outsmarted again.

So yesterday afternoon, in an effort to keep the Leghorns from laying their eggs under the nesting boxes, I hauled in a few rocks to block the entrance. This morning I found them scattered about…


…and a couple of disgruntled hens in there, daring me to stick my hand in.


Bother. This afternoon, more rocks. I’ve got lots of rocks.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Outsmarted again.

  1. Mike says:

    Um, Joel, you may have to board the gap up…

    https://www.untamedscience.com/blog/how-smart-are-chickens/

  2. Klaus says:

    I would also put some dividers in those boxes turning those three into six. They like a more confined box to lay in. At least that’s been my experience. I find if I have say one box per three birds I never really have to go looking elsewhere.

  3. Robert says:

    Today I bought a dozen extra large eggs for 64 cents. Just sayin’… 🙂 Of course, I drive by the store twice a day M-F so it’s a bit more convenient than your situation.

  4. Joel says:

    I think the lowest price I’ve seen here is 99 cents. It has doubled since then but at the time I did have to mentally sit myself down and decide precisely why I was doing this. It clearly isn’t to save money. I now have regular access to town, I’m not going to be isolated for a month at a time again. While it is true that this is the town that ran out of eggs, it was only the one time. I do eat a heck of a lot of eggs but not the five or six dozen a week they’re currently producing. There’s no solidly pragmatic reason to continue.

    I believe that I should be producing at least some of my own food if at all possible. Gardening has so far not proven practical for so many reasons I’m unlikely to ever overcome them all but I can at least raise chickens, which in turn produce eggs. It’s not anything like cost effective, but it’s something. Also, I like it.

  5. Ben says:

    If the day ever comes where you either can’t buy food, or there’s no food to buy, at least that part of your diet will remain sustainable. And that will put you way ahead of 99% of our population.

  6. Zelda says:

    Extra large organic fed free range chicken eggs are about $4 a dozen where I live. Keep raising those chickens. As Ben said, you never know. The living conditions you have today could easily disappear tomorrow. As long as you have Spam and eggs you’ll be OK.

  7. Norman says:

    There is a difference between store-bought eggs and “made ’em myself.” The FDA requires that SB eggs be washed, which removes the protective coating on the outside of the shell; this means they must be refrigerated to be preserved, starting right after the washing. Those direct from the chicken retain that coating, allowing room temperature storage for up to, roughly, 7-10 days, with higher “room” temps on the shorter end of that.

    Last I heard, fridge access at the Lair is, if not a bit restricted, at least somewhat inconvenient. Of course, so is maintaining the supply of egg makers…..

  8. Mark Matis says:

    In an emergency situation, will chicken feed continue to be available? If not, can those chickens credibly forage for feed? If the answer to those two quesitons is “NO!”, then they are at best a very short term survival resource.

  9. Joel says:

    Commercial chicken feed will be among the last commodities to go, I suspect, but that doesn’t mean it’ll be available to me. They’re omnivores and really get by better on food scraps – not that there would be many scraps if the commercial world ended. Free ranging would be so dangerous I’d be calories ahead eating them myself, but I can picture a large chicken tractor or a series of smaller ones. The big long-term problem is that these chickens can’t reproduce themselves – they simply don’t know how. Even with a rooster, the brooding instinct has been bred out of them and they’ll go extinct without technology I don’t have. Still, I could picture muddling through for a few years, during which I’m developing other sources – like getting good at hunting.

  10. Ben says:

    My guess is that, in a serious pinch, a few bucket traps set out in the desert would yield sufficient fresh rat protein to keep your birds producing eggs.

  11. Joel says:

    Or me alive, for that matter. The thought has crossed my mind – I’ve frequently wondered what packrat tastes like.

  12. Robert says:

    Joel at May 13, 2019 at 5:08 pm

    You beat me to it. I was gonna reply that “I wanna” or “I like ’em” would be reason enough to continue.

To the stake with the heretic!