Friday, November 12, 2010

Egg Count 11

The egg count for October was 130.44 dozen, or 4.21 dozen per day, from 319 hens. If you've been keeping up with the count, then you know that this represents a significant turnaround from last month. It seems that the main problem concerned the hens not getting enough of their vitamin and mineral supplement mix, Fertrell's, which had been offered free-choice since the transition to organic feed grains.

On October 12, I began to mix the Fertrell's into their feed by hand. On that day the count was 1 dozen total. By October 14, the total count had climbed to 2.5 total. A week later the count had risen to 5.5 dozen. By the end of the month, the total daily egg count was close to 10 dozen.
This is really sort of remarkable. Over the last two weeks of October, once I began to hand-mix the Fertrell's into their grain ration, the number of eggs laid by the Ecotone hens rose by almost 1,000% a day. Cumulatively, from October 12 to the end of the month, there was a 866% increase in the number of eggs laid on the farm!

Even with these numbers, the feed conversion ratio remained rather high. For the month of October, the average amount of grain it took for each dozen eggs was 12.27 lbs per dozen, or just over a pound per egg. This put the cost of each dozen eggs from Ecotone at $3.68. Given the last two months of significant costs and very few eggs - where the average cost of a dozen was $11.60 - this is no doubt encouraging, but still some tough accounting.

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