Farmers know the necessity of keeping accurate records. They need to itemize their inputs and outputs, analyze their methods, adjust to the myriad of fluctuations in their operations, and, hopefully, write a profit on the final line. Those of us with backyard birds sometimes keep track of expenses, but more often than not, we decide not to – if you look at the dollars and cents in black and white, a few hens pay their way. (I’ve done it. I’ve stopped.) But, it always makes me feel good to keep a chart of the eggs laid. How bountiful it seems! It’s also interesting to compare records from year to year. When did the production dip due to molting, age, weather or disease?
Some people, especially those with only a handful of chickens, can identify eggs from individual hens, but I simply keep track of eggs from the old girls (almost none) and from the young Gems (lots!) I keep a chart on a magnetic bulletin board in my kitchen. I use the Taylor’s All-In-One Poultry Food EGG RECORD. It’s a sheet of ephemera that I purchased off of eBay. It was a piece of promotional advertising given away in 1936, at a time when the feed companies were trying to convince farmers that commercial pellets paid for themselves in increased production. In my collection are more complicated record keeping systems, found in other vintage papers, but this one suits my simple needs. As a New Year’s gift to you, I’ve scanned it for you to print out and use. Click on the image below for a PDF.
I wish everyone baskets of beautiful eggs in 2012!