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November 26, 2021
So I decided I wanted chickens and I went this spring and orders 5 of them. I finally got the call to pick them up and went, excited and nervous to pick them up. I had adult chickens once before but they were on the property I lived when I moved in and I really didn't know much about them, I just fed them, so this was a brand new experience for me.
When I got there the girl asked if I wanted to pick them out myself. I didn't and I later learned that I should have. I also should have known how to sex a chicken because chicken suppliers aren't all that good at it themselves. I ended up with a Rooster and we are unable to keep Roosters where I live and I wont get into where the Rooster went but I highly recommend learning how to sex chickens before you pick them up. You can find videos online!
I got my chickens and went home. They spent the first several months of their life living in a box in my spare bedroom under heat lights while we built their coop. I ordered the plans for the coop off Etsy and its the cutest coop and it came out very nice and suits these chickens perfectly. They love their home!
Their house is actually out in the yard near my bedroom and bathroom so I can hear if they have any issues at night. We have racoons, skunks, foxes, bears and an occasional mountain lion. I like it, I know they are safe! I really love my chickens. We have bonded in a big way. Below is the finished version of the chicken coop, paint and landscaping. There is a small chicken yard on the opposite side where they eat.
They only spend the mornings in the coop and the little coop yard (till egg laying is done) then they have full run of the property! I have to fence in every fruit and veggie I grow or they will uproot the plants and eat many of them. Broccoli and spinach don't stand a chance with chickens. You have to go the distance to protect your garden and still allow the chickens free run of the property but it is worth it!
They spend a good amount of their time on the deck. If I am in the kitchen cooking (kitchen door is off the deck) they come in and hang out under my feet begging for scraps with the dog.
Two of my chickens started to lay right on time and they lay every day. One of those two will occasionally skip a day and the next day when she lays it will be a double yoker. The other is regular like clockwork. Two took their time getting around to laying and currently I only have 3 that lay right now and waiting for the final one to start. Whats cool, that I didn't know until they started to lay is, the eggs they lay first are SUPER TINY!
This is a photo of a normal chicken egg and a first chicken's egg on the right. It's about the size of a half dollar around. So cute! They lay these tiny eggs for a couple days then they start laying normal sized eggs.
I now have a good stockpile of eggs and I have learned the water glassing method of storing eggs which will preserve eggs for many, many months. Some have said they will be good for a year but I haven't experienced that yet so I will let you know, but months in now and they are great!
If you have thought about getting chickens I highly recommend doing it. You have your own fresh eggs although i won't say it is cheaper to raise chickens because I am feeding mine constantly, but the whole experience of bonding with them and interacting with them is priceless!
My only word of caution is, learn how to sex a chicken before you pick up your babies or you could end up with a rooster. Roosters are very protective of chickens. If the chicken gets into trouble and you try to help it out, the rooster is likely to attack you. They will get aggressive and pick fights with the dogs and some cannot be trusted around small children. They have spurs and if they are protective or aggressive they will attack. If you are in a backyard chicken situation where you can't have roosters you will want to make sure you check before you take them home. There are a LOT of people who end up with a rooster they are trying to find a home for. In Colorado there is even a rooster rescue!
In loving Memory of Alice
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