Our awesome orange yolked eggs come from our pastured layers.
A typical day of a laying hen on Pasture2 Table Farm goes a little something like this:
Sunrise: ramp to the eggmobile opens on a new plot of pasture. The hens file out one by one (Or fly) and they start the morning picking off the best pieces of grass willy-nilly. Its actually hilarious, its almost like watching children doing an Easter Egg hunt. The hens sprint around pick off the tastiest pieces before their comrades can.
Noon time: The hens have eaten their morning fill and now its time to socialize and dust bathe. The hens all get in a group, and they get down to the cooler soil and they kick it on to themselves. They always do it in a pile of 20 or more hens also. Great fun at the community bath.
Evening: now that bathing is done, its time to eat some more grass.
Sundown: As soon as the sun starts setting the hens know its time for bedtime. They got to get a solid rest for their busy day tomorrow. The hens start filing into their Eggmobile as Joel Salatin would call it. They find a comfy spot to roost and its time to sleep.
Hens sleep in something called an egg mobile. As shown to the right, its basically a little barn on wheels. Inside is a series of roosts to sleep on, the walls are lined with nesting boxes to lay in, and the floor is slatted so all waste falls through, which keeps the eggmobile clean, and fertilizes the soil beneath.
Every afternoon and evening we go out and collect eggs from the nesting boxes. About every 2 days the egg mobile gets moved to a new location so the hens always have constant access to fresh forage.
Hens are a lot different than broilers. They are much hardier and more willing to forage. While a broiler can only get around 20% pasture to 80% feed, the hens are flipped. They get about 80% of their nutrition from the pasture and 20% from feed.