Glorious Googies Eggs

Glorious Googies Eggs

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From their website:

Are your hens Free Range?

Our hens are farmed exactly the way you imagine they should be, with a big old farm house, lots of trees and plenty of grass.  Imagine a small backyard plot with a couple of hens rummaging around in the garden and lawns.  Well, that's us, just on a slightly bigger scale.  

How are your hens housed? Why use caravans?

We're all about reuse and recycle here, so what better way of doing it then making hen houses out of old caravans!  The re-purposed caravans allow easy mobility across the pasture, they have great air flow and weather protection, and sight seeing views.  Being able to easily move them across the pasture ensures the grass is evenly fertilised and our hens have plenty of access to fresh grass.   The caravans have specially fitted nesting boxes and perches for hen comfort, and the floors have been removed to allow fertilisation of the  pasture as the caravans are moved around the paddocks.  

Do you keep your hens locked up?

No.  There is no need for us to lock the hens in the caravans as our gorgeous Maremma dogs and excellent permanent fencing protect our girls from foxes and eagles both day and night.  So if a hen wants to sleep outside under the stars, she can.

How are your eggs collected?

We hand collect the eggs every day in our hand held shopping baskets (yes we bought them, and didn't nick them from the shops).  This allows us to monitor feed, water levels, egg freshness and the health of all our hard working girls every single day.

What is your stocking density?

We operate at 400 hens per hectare.  This may sound like a lot or a little, depending on your perspective.  However, we've found that this rate of hens per hectare works well for the land we farm.

The hens in their individual flocks of 200 birds have ample room to run, roam, dust bathe, forage and flap.  This number also allows us to properly manage our pasture levels.  Any less than this and the grass gets out of control, and we can't find the chooks.  Any more and we have can have issues with soil erosion.  So 400 hens per hectare works well for us.

Do you de-beak? What even is de-beaking??

No, we don't.  De-beaking is a practice used in the majority of all egg producing systems, where the tip of the hens beak is removed with a lazer at only days old.  This is done in an attempt to prevent hens attacking one another in an over crowded situation.  Studies have shown that de-beaked hens loose the sensory nerves at the tip of their beak and have lifelong difficulties feeding.  As we ensure our hens are happy with lots of space and no stress, there is absolutely no need for our hens to be de-beaked, and it also means they can eat a high quality, crushed wholegrain diet.    

What do the hens eat?

As well as grass, our hens are fed crushed, Australian whole grains in a specialised mix that helps our hens to stay happy and healthy.  The hens cannot live exclusively on grass as there is not enough protein, vitamins and minerals in grass alone to sustain them or to allow them to produce delicious eggs.  Instead, the hens need grain to grow feathers and produce eggs, and it helps to break up the grass within their guts digestive system.  The feed is GMO free, antibiotic free, and does not contain any animal byproducts.