Four years ago, in the early spring, we got our first farm animals, six red hens, from the Cobleskill Agway. They looked pretty much identical, so we gave them one name: Celeste. They were great layers, each producing an egg a day all summer and fall. Production went down a bit that winter, but as soon as the days started getting longer, they were back to the egg-a-day routine.
|Celeste in the Early Spring of 2009 or 2010|
Over the years, they have died off, as chickens seem to do, from mysterious sudden diseases or hawk attacks, but one of the Original Celestes still exists. I swear she's still laying, though it's hard to say for certain because since then we acquired a half-dozen Barred Rock hens and then, last year, some Celeste impostors, who look like her, but lack the Original Celestes' commitment to quality (and quantity). This spring we went on a sort of Quest for Celeste, and thanks to the friendly folks at Agway, we found the source of the O.C. and picked up six new Celestes yesterday.
|New Celeste, Right, Mingles With the Flock|
Destiné the rooster is one happy guy with six new pretty ladies in his flock. There was some hen beef at first, but Destro just strolled up and said bok bok bok, and that was that. He went on to give the new girls a "warm welcome" right away. He's good like that. The new Celestes are still figuring out where to sleep and lay eggs. Farmer Fin found one in the grass last night.
|On the Left, an Egg From One of the Older Hens; On the Right, the New Celeste's First Egg|
I guess we will be making some little omelets soon!