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Photo used under Creative Commons from vanessa lollipop
Have you tried to peel a fresh hard-boiled egg? If you have, you found out that it is real hard. Half the egg may come off in the process. Eggs from the store peel real smooth so why doesn't one fresh from the farm? The reason is that store eggs are older by about a month and this causes a pocket of air to develop between the shell and the egg part giving room to easily peel them.
Some will use baking soda as a remedy but this will stink up your eggs. I actually used to have chickens and discovered the best method that is easy to use and you already have the remedy sitting in your kitchen.
Just Use Salt
I don't remember if I found this out on my own or whether someone told me or but I just grab a box of salt and pour some in with my boiling eggs and they peel as nicely as if I had bought them at the store. Easy to use and easy
to add. Short and simple. How much? I never measured it. Just dump some in. If they peel easy then you put in enough.
I really enjoyed my chickens. There was usually one rooster and about 15 or so hens. The photo here is a picture of some of them in the winter. The hens were different types so my eggs ranged in color from brown to blue. When one of the hens decided to sit and raise some chicks. I would choose the eggs I wanted her to sit on and mark the eggs with a child safe marking pen so that I could keep track of the developing eggs and remove any fresh ones that the other chickens added to the pile.
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Once the chicks were born I kept them in a small pen with their mother beside the rest of the chickens so that as soon as they were old enough they could join the flock.
As the chicks grew they would pass through a flying stage and I would have to catch them and trim their wing on one side. Be careful to cut only the end feathers and not harm them in any way. This will make them lop sided and prevent them from flying out of the pen and getting hurt or lost.
My chicken fence was about five feet tall using 4 x 4 or 6 inch wire mesh. I placed a foot high tiny holed chicken wire along the bottom so the chicks could not get out. Then at the bottom of the fence I laid a strip of fencing on the ground on both sides of the fence and connected it to the bottom of the main fence. This was weighted down with rocks and prevented any dogs or foxes from digging under.
I like to have large runs for the chickens to roam around in and have thought of a good idea for a garden. It would be fun to do this. Here is the idea. Build two large chicken yards coming from their hen house. Place your chickens in one of the yards. They will completely remove all weeds from the yard and fertilize it too. Then in the fall switch them to the other yard to let the first one set and rest during the winter and allow the fertilizer to age a little. You might want to plow it up right away too.
In the spring you have a yard already to go for your garden. No weeds and very well fertilized. Switch the hens each year and you will always have a nice garden spot that is easy to prepare for planting and your plants should grow really big with all the natural fertilizer on it. The eggs you can use or sell so it is all a win win situation.
Now when you have chicks you have a hard decision on what to do with the extra roosters. You can't keep them together because they will fight. If you are like me and don't eat meat it can be hard to find a good home for them.
The first time I had about 3 or 4 roosters to find homes for I placed an ad in the local paper for free roosters. Someone came with a bag to get them. The man looked homeless and I shuddered as I imagined the fate of these birds. But I couldn't back out and say they could not have them so I sadly watched them get carried away.
The next time I put in an ad I said, Roosters to GOOD home. The roosters went fast but I was suspicious when people came and said they would give them a good home and take two or three of them. What were they going to do with two or more? Especially since you couldn't place them together? I learned to just hope for the best when I got rid of my roosters in the future.
My chickens were all vegetarian fed hens. I fed them corn and leftovers from our table. At that time I ran a foster home and there were a lot of people to feed and this generated a lot of leftovers which supplemented the hens really well. Plus the hens were able to catch insects and such that helped too. If you don't have enough leftovers you could probably find a soy bean feed that you can add to your corn to keep them vegetarian fed and healthy.
Then to give them the calcium they needed for good eggs I spread out clamshells that can be bought from your local farm store for them to eat. This caused the egg shells to be so hard that I could sometimes throw a fresh egg and it would bounce on the ground.
Dear Chicken Fans,
I am writing to you in behalf of your Heavenly Father. He is seeking you like a lost sheep. You remember the Bible story? It is about a shepherd who has 100 sheep. But when he brings the sheep home one night, one is missing. He then leaves the 99 sheep and goes out into the wilderness until he finds that lost sheep.
In this parable the shepherd goes out to search for the one lost sheep-the very least that can be numbered. So if there had been but one lost soul, Christ would have died for that one. To read more click Lost Sheep