original chicken post remains the most viewed entry I've made on this blog, seeing new visits nearly every day. Fascinating. Of course, one reason is that it appears many non-English speakers search Google for "facesbok", which when parsed does collide nicely with this blog. I imagine people searching for the social networking phenomena and finding themselves looking at pictures of chickens with some serious confusion.
But for those actually wanting to read about home chickens, it seems that people are both interested in buying pasture-raised chicken eggs and raising their own based on all the other writing out there. The Winter is a tougher time as a consumer though; my two primary sources are dried up for the time being, as the egg laying has slowed down while the chickens molt. I don't have a clue how long that will take, but luckily we are able to get eggs through our Winter CSA, as well. Sadly, circumstances collided and I ended up buying eggs from the store on Christmas Eve for the first time in 18 months. Now I have a fresh batch of real eggs from the CSA and I find myself reluctant to use the remaining four from the store. They are pale yellow and I wonder: hmm.. where does taste not matter? I guess I'm now an egg snob, too.
In any case, the other day I stumbled upon another sustainable living blog called the Good Eater. It's pretty interesting and has a wide range of authors. Recently they posted an analysis of the cost effectiveness of owning a beehive in the city. Like chickens, bees are now becoming all the rage. Indeed, in Baltimore there is a non-profit group called Baltimore Honey that places hives around people's property in a community apiculture project. It works like a honey CSA (community supported agriculture) with landowners getting a share of the years take. The extra honey is labeled and sold as B'More HonE.
Back to the chicken point. The Good Eater honey post referenced an even older post from their blog on the cost effectiveness of raising chickens -- egg layers. This is a great post for the scientists out there and the information gatherers. There are even charts. :)
Here it is: http://www.goodeater.org/2010/05/10/backyard-chickens-running-the-numbers/