The chickens went off the lay for a bit. I couldn’t blame them. With some of the winter weather we’ve had I was wanting to conserve my energy also. I turned the soil in the chook pen with a pitch-fork to bring up the earthworm rich soil for them. They cluck contentedly at my feet.
In the past fortnight they have started to begin laying in earnest again. I praise them with a little scratch on the neck and some more turns of the soil. Despite the lack of eggs during the past few months they have turned some paper and green waste into the most encouraging and abundant soil into which I can plant seeds for the coming spring and summer.
The Coturnix Quail too, have started laying again as though on cue from their larger bird-folk. A welcome mix of soft browns, eggshell blues, milky whites and the speckled browns of the quail. Don’t look for them in the photo – they don’t last long enough!