Dawn with new baby chicks
In a self-sustaining lifestyle it is important to have all of the things you will need around you. My reason for getting chickens was that I will have eggs for eating; shell, and manure for fertalizing the gardens and some cute companions. Little did I relise that I would fall in love with them and go on to design a "palace" for them. I have a coop that has three floors, with 5 official roosting boxes and 2 unofficial. It has been nailed together enough to survive a level 5 hurricaine (we hope) not to mention, all of the wild critters we have in the forest. I am calling it the" Blue Moon Chicken Cafe". Around the coop we have a 6 foot high fence. roosting platforms and chicken toys (yes, I said toys) to entertain them and me. I feed them organic feed, combined with sprouted grains, weeds from my garden, and let them free range within the fenced in area (which is larger then some people's back yards). I have named them after chicken menu items. Fried, Fettachini, Orange, Rosemary, Lemon, Paprikosh, Red ,and Blondie. The first picture above is me with the Aracondas; Orange, Red, Paprikosh, and Blondie. They are spoiled and loved birds who get attention everyday. I make sure I pick each one of them up on a regular basis, kiss them and tell them that they are loved. Paprikosh one of my Aracandas refuses to go into the coop at night until she is picked up, kissed and told that she is loved. Fettachini is the head hen and bosses everyone around, when I come into the pen she runs up to me and welcomes me in. They are a personality filled bunch of hens and they have brough much joy into my life.
The first picture below is the "Blue Moon Chicken Cafe" with a wild peacock walking on the outside of the coop looking inside for a date, the next picture down is me taking eggs out of the coop with Fried, and Rosemary protesting, and the last picture is me with the daily egg harvest. I usually get 6-8 eggs a day from the girls