That caption on a newsletter caught my attention. It is so true that backyard chickens are making a renaissance and the resident canine is having to move over to make room for the ladies. It seems the movement for backyard flocks has gone from folksy to chic. Many start keeping chickens for the eggs but more than that they make terrific pets.
I know I enjoy my chickens. I relish having fresh eggs to eat (they taste ten times better than store bought) and I have the advantage of the lovely compost I can make with what I clean out of their house and yard. They are great at clearing out weeds, just set up a temporary pen around the weedy area, turn your chickens loose in it. Voila! Before you know it, bare ground , and the area is fertilized to boot. Of course if there is any plants in that area you don’t want eradicated then that plan will not work, they don’t discriminate.
Meet some of my ladies
As you can see I keep plenty of straw, pine shavings and dried leaves on hand to toss into their pen and the hen house to absorb the treasures they leave behind, that keeps the odors down and makes it easier to rake out on a regular basis. Regular cleaning also keeps odors at bay.
Chickens are easy. Keep them fed, clean water and a safe place to roam and roost. There are all sorts of shops offering all the amenities as well as your local feed store should have what you need. Here are two very good links for resources.
My Pet Chicken
Predators (raccoons, skunks, weasels) do like to make an easy meal of sleeping chickens (chickens are easy picken’s when sleeping, they are really comatose) so a secure hen house is a must. My husband built me this sturdy hen house and pen. There is a complete roof on the pen now so it really is secure.
Not as fancy as some of the fun chicken pens and houses I have seen online and in magazines lately. I am collecting some photos of some really nice hen houses for a blog post dedicated to them.
We just added to our flock. This year I wanted to get some Black Copper Marans and between my mom and I hunting around as locally as we could we tracked down some chicks. We took a trip the beginning of this week to pick them up. Here are our new babies!
We acquired 10, they are straight run so we don’t know yet how many hens or roosters we ended up with. We won’t know until they mature. We have high hopes of getting mostly hens but if not we know we can find good homes for the roosters. I, personally, would like to keep a rooster but we shall see if I can this time. They will grow fast and I will post updates of their progress.
So if you are looking for a new pet maybe you should think about backyard chickens. We started out with 5 hens and an inexpensive (we built it ourselves) chicken coop. It does not take a lot of money or fancy to enjoy your own chickens. And actually they pay for themselves in the eggs they produce.
Glad you could stop by and visit.