When the chooks first moved in with me, they weren’t laying eggs. I didn’t expect them to, and I had been told they weren’t laying for the previous owner. It could have been a mixture of age, the fact that it’s Winter and who knows. Well, it turns out that the “who knows” part was almost wholly responsible for the complete lack of eggs. The age and Winter were responsible for the low level. But the chickens actually had a bacterial infection that was causing them to lay lash eggs. These eggs are a key symptom of SALPINGITIS << If you click on that link, be warned that it’s not pretty. It’s downright nasty actually. By the time a chook lays a lash egg, the infection is said to have been present for as long as six months, but the information varies. I guess I felt happy knowing it wasn’t something I had done, that I had somehow made them sick. Anyway, in my Google travels I came that site also basically said that when lash eggs appear, your chickens will probably die in six months.
Want to see a lash egg?
Hahaha gross. Hahaha so gross.
But once I realised the disorder was bacterial, I gave some (human) antibiotics a crack. So every day I would half a capsule and mix the powder into the yolk of two eggs. I would segregate the chooks, and ensure each ate their medicine egg. I chose egg because it’s their favourite treat of all time (chooks are such gnarly carnivores) and in case you’re concerned, I chose the best eggs I could find (fully outdoor with acres of space, local, but still guilt-inducing). After four days of antibiotics, I then started up increasing their probiotics, to ensure that their digestive systems could recover.
And they started to recover. This is the first “normal” egg after a week. A semi-normal. Notice its little side-dude. I don’t know, either.
After a week of antibiotics, I stopped, and kept up with yoghurt and fermented grains. One the digestive system was able to heal itself a bit better, they hens were much perkier. In fact, I noticed that there was a little nest in the coop. Inside that little nest was our first egg.