Another olive egger pullet has come online. Yesterday I got two olive pullet eggs, and I figured out that their mother Dahlia is responsible for the big brown egg. She’s setting a good example!
These little olive eggs are so amazing. They’re like the eggs of some exotic species. And today I got one more! The pullets are twenty-one weeks old this week. Eventually the pullets should produce full-size eggs—these are just their starter eggs. Thus I am especially appreciating them because I know they are a fleeting phenomenon.
Something I never knew before I had chickens is that a hen will consistently lay eggs of basically the same shape and color, with the same amount of speckling. If you pay attention, this makes it easy to know which bird is laying which eggs, and how often, and gives you a good idea of a particular hen’s productivity. For example, I can tell from looking at the photo above that different pullets are laying the olive eggs, even if I didn’t know they were both laid on the same day, as one egg is browner with speckles, and the other is a clear, lighter olive. And the first egg I got this week was laid by the pullet that produces speckled olive eggs.
I had a completely unexpected surprise today as I was feeding the chickens. I glanced into their nest box and saw this:
Ever since the girls quit laying for the winter—many weeks ago—I’d stopped checking their nest box for eggs. But it turns out that even without any supplemental light, and headed into the darkest days of winter, at least two chickens are making an effort. One, laying the large brown egg, is either Dahlia or her Black Copper Marans sister. And the other laying chicken is a homegrown olive egger pullet, which is a total surprise as the chicks were born so late this summer that I hadn’t expected any of the four young pullets to lay before next spring.
This little olive pullet egg is the first egg from a chicken born and raised right here on Bonafide Farm. She’s a second-generation Bonafide bird, and a science experiment begun two years ago when I raised her Wheaten Ameraucana (blue egg-laying) and Black Copper Marans (dark brown egg-laying) parents with the hope that their genes would combine to produce a chicken that lays an olive egg.
And today, with this first beautiful olive pullet egg, I can claim success. Well, as much as one can having not actually laid the egg myself!
For more on how this pullet came to be, head on back to July 2013…