Pretty Pullet Photos & More

As I first sat down here to write a blog post, I found myself not knowing what to write or where to begin. Perhaps it was because there's so much "uncertain" at this moment. I know what I was originally hoping to do this year - as one week ago I shared "my ideas" with the family. Then, another opportunity came up, but at this point we're not sure if it's going to work out or not. If it does, all those original "ideas" and "plans" will be changed, but hopefully for the better. I'm not going to say what that is, until I know if it's moving forward or not, which we won't know any more until next Friday.
   Through it all, the Lord is teaching me some absolutely incredible life lessons. While I'm certainly not "there yet", I'm beginning to see more clearly that "God's Got This", and I can be perfectly at peace in not knowing what's around the next bend in the road. Why should I not be? He knows everything, and in comparison, I know nothing & can only see very dimly. One thing is for sure, no matter what lies ahead it will an adventure!
One of the many comforting & encouraging Scriptures I read this morning was from Isaiah 55:8-12 :

"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways," declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and 
My thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there 
without watering the earth and making it bear and sprout,
and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater;
So will My Word be which goes forth from My mouth;
It will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire,
and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.
For you will go out with joy and be led forth with peace;
The mountains and the hills will break forth into shouts of joy before you,
and all the trees of the field will clap their hands."

Therefore, I will continue one day at a time, enjoy each moment, and
be grateful for the little things in life.

On the weather front, we've had a little snow, come and go. Nothing like last year. Currently, there's less than an inch of snow, but underneath is ice. This photo is looking up the hill that goes down to the main entrance for the hobby farm. Because of the sled filled with buckets of water & feed, it packs down the snow. Then, we have a thaw for a day, it starts to melt, then re-freezes into ice. So, my boots are outfitted with ice cleats, but they'll soon need to replaced because the cleats are falling out! Even still, I'd rather deal with a little snow & ice than several feet of snow!

The chicks with Elly May are growing feathers crazy fast, and one of their favorite past-times is to ride on Elly May's back. One chick this morning decided to explore the Brooder Barn. Thankfully, the little hooligan was caught & put back in the safe confines of the brooder. I can't believe how fast they're growing, must be the cooler temps makes them eat more, which in turn makes them grow faster. But, at only 18 days old, I can already tell that lots of them are roosters! Of course they're the most out going ones, so they're the ones I see the most.

While for the winter I prefer smaller combs, the single combs sure do make telling who's roo/hen much easier at a much younger age. I hope to do an initial "list" of the roosters this coming week, so I can see if my guesses actually turn out correct.

Thankfully, though, I have lots of pullets in the PA & DC Coop that are maturing quite nicely.
In this photo, the front row - on the left if a "Madison" pullet from Purely Poultry Hatchery, with an older Catskill Homesteader pullet on the right - they're both about the same size; the roost behind them - a black hatchery pullet, a "mini flower" pullet, and two Catskill Homesteaders.


I'm watching with anticipation these pullets for when they'll start laying. One of the "simpler" black-and-white barred pullets was checking out the nesting boxes today. I was going to sell her & her "twin" sister last fall, but when checking their wing-band info, discovered they were half Bielefelder, half Catskill Homesteader - the hen of which I'd sent to auction already when "downsizing" before winter. So, it'll be interesting what color brown eggs she lays. 


Another pullet - who I'm calling "Black Beard" (for now, anyways) - I found out on Jan 19th, I first saw her come out of the nesting box cackling.

IMG_1116 Then, on Jan 26th, I decided it was time to make the nesting boxes in the PA Coop available again, since most of the pullets are at point-of-lay or soon will be. When I removed the wire fronts to keep them out, I found two green eggs in there! Sure enough, the "Black Beard" had found a unique way to get into the blocked off nesting box. Later, I found her freshly laid green egg.

This pullet with the unique "blue" & "brown" coloration is one of my favorites. I have to catch her & check her wing band #, but my guess would be she's from the 2015 "Garden Coop" breeding group.
Another view of the same pullet; picture doesn't do her justice, as the pattern on her feathers is very intricate and beautiful.
Swedish Flower Hen crested pullet - she has more black on her than the other crested pullets I've hatched thus far. Not sure if I'll keep her or not. But, she's a cutie. I used to not prefer the crested hens, but now I'm beginning to like a few for diversity.
This Swedish Flower Hen pullet is very hard to take a photo of, as she's a fast mover. I really like her coloration, and even though she's dark, I'm impressed with how many "flowers" she's kept.
I'm pretty sure this pullet's mother would be "Primrose", who's very similar in pattern & comb type. But this young gal has more "blonde" on her chest. In the last week or so, her comb & wattles have doubled in size & really turned bright pink.
One of the few pullets that were sired by "Andrew #2" (since most turned out to be roosters). She has a high percentage of EE in her, as evidenced by her pea comb, muff & coloration. But, she is still a multi-generation Catskill Homesteader.
I must say I would "fooled" by this pullet for quite awhile, thinking she looked like a Bielefelder. But, her unusual white feathers on her back & non-standard coloration indicates that she obviously isn't pure, more likely only half Bielefelder. Another pullet I must check wing band # and records, as she is quite unique, a keeper for sure.