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Prepping For SHTF

Our First Dozen Eggs

Its official, my wife and I got our first dozen eggs. The eggs are rather small, but they will get larger as the chicken matures. My aunt calls the first eggs a chicken lays “pullet eggs”.

The first egg was laid on July 14, 2012

The 12th eggs was laid on July 22, 2012.

The chickens went from laying one egg every other day, to laying 3 eggs in one day.  For the past 3 days, the chickens have been laying 3 eggs a day.

It took around 4 months and 3 weeks before the first egg was laid.  After the chickens starting laying, the rate of laying has picked up dramatically. Hopefully the rate of laying will continue to pick up over the next few weeks. As of right now, I think only 3 of my 13 hens are laying. When all of the hens start laying, I am hoping to get anywhere from 6 – 10 eggs a day.

My wife and I have 13 chickens:
2 Black Jersey Giants
1 Speckled Sussex
2 Barred Rocks (aka Plymouth Rocks)
2 Silver Laced Wyandotte
2 Australorps
4 Rhode Island Reds

From now on, my family and I do not have to buy our eggs from the grocery store. During a long term SHTF survival situation, my family will have a source of protein and a source of fresh food.

Chickens have been a vital food source to humans for thousands of years. There is no need to change now.


So what if I got eggs

Some armchair survivalist might be saying, “ok, so what if you got a dozen eggs?”

Awhile back I posted an article about survivalism as an experience.  The article discussed the theory of survivalism, compared to first hand, real life experience.  By building a chicken coop, and raising chicks until they started laying eggs, I have gained first hand experience.

If all you have is book knowledge, then all you have is an unproven theory.  Until you get outside and prove the theory in a real life application, then all you have is an unproven theory.

During a SHTF survival situation, my family and I now have a source of fresh food to supplement our food stockpile.  I think most of us can agree that fresh food beats processed foods every day of the week.

When people look at an egg, they do not think about all of the work, time and effort it took to deliver that egg.  It took my wife and I around $700 to build the chicken coop, two full weekends and countless trips to the lumber store for supplies.

Its an egg, so what?  What about the 2x4s, the screws, hammer, nails, hardware cloth, tin for the roof, plywood, skilsaw, drill, drill bit, screws,,, that made the eggs possible?  Without a safe enclosure, predators would probably have killed the chickens a long time ago.

Lets say that some kind of long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation happens, you are able to buy some chicks from a local farmer, then what?

Sustainable Food Source

Livestock are a sustainable food source which have fed mankind for thousands of years.  The cultivation of chickens, pigs, goats, cattle,,,, helped mankind move from hunter gathers to farmers and gardeners.  Just as livestock fed our ancestors, so will livestock feed us today and tomorrow.

Part of my long term food stockpile are #10 cans of freeze dried food and food stored in mylar bags.  The problem is, the #10 cans and mylar bags do not reproduce.

During a long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation, it is going to be absolute essential to have some kind of sustainable food source.  With that in mind, what are your sustainable food sources going to be?

Video about our first chicken egg

Video about stockpiling food

Picking some snap beans from a community garden

A dozen eggs may not seem like much, but it is the first steps in a developing a sustainable food source.

Keep in mind, the longest journey starts with a single step. In buying the chicks, building the chicken coop, taking care of the chickens, getting our first eggs, my wife and I are taking baby steps towards developing a long term sustainable food supply.

Baby steps is better then no steps at all.

Past The Topic Of Eggs

I have two major fears about a long term disaster:

1 – my family starving to death.

2 – a waterborne pathogen killing my family.

Since this article is about eggs, lets leave the waterborne pathogene issue for later discussion.  If you want to talk about waterborne pathogens and water filter, visit this article – Berkey water filter and the bug out location.

When the chicken coop was built, it was made wide enough to be loaded on a trailer and hauled to the Bug Out Location.  Once we reach the Bug Out Location the chickens can free range to find their food.  The field I plan on putting the coop is 10 acres.  In all, the chickens will have 20 – 30 acres to forage on.

Since chickens are just a few generations from their Red Junglefowl ancestors, I hope that my domesticated chickens can forage for their food. This goes back to theory VS hands on experience. I have a theory that my chickens can forage, but I have yet to prove that theory. To prove my theory, I would have to load the chicken coop on a trailer, pull it to the Bug Out Location, unload the trailer, stop all commercial feed supplements, then chart egg production over the next 2 – 3 months.

Due to time and distance constraints, I am not able to analyze egg production between commercial feed and foraging.

Even if egg production is cut in half between foraging and commercial feed, hopefully my children and grandchildren will get enough eggs for breakfast.  After breakfast the kids would either have to raise crops or hunt for the rest of their food.  But maybe, just maybe, the kids will get some kind of meal every day from eggs.


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