Adventures in Backyard Chicken-ry
This is not my chicken. This is not even what my chicken will look like, but this chicken is cute. I found her here.
Yes, I totally made up the word Chicken-ry.
Y and I have decided to get two backyard chickens. Why are we doing this? Well, because we tend to hear about things, get really excited about them, and get carried away.
I don’t remember where we first heard about backyard chickens, but we loved the idea of having fresh eggs. The more research we did, the better the idea sounded. Did you know that backyard eggs have way more good stuff (like vitamins and Omega-3’s) and less bad stuff (like saturated fat and cholesterol)? And they taste way better than store bought eggs? It’s true. And because raising urban chickens is totally legal where we live, and it seems relatively straightforward, we’ve decided to do it.
This past weekend we took a big step: we bought a chicken coop.
This chicken coop is made from an old car. For reals. Image (and more info) from here.
Originally, we were thinking of building our own coop. We were inspired by awesome coops we saw online (see above) and got really excited. However, neither of us has any carpentry skills and I insisted that we could end up wasting a bunch of money. Then Y found a guy on Craigslist who could build one for the low, low price of $500. Yikes.After a bunch of reading, we learned that chickens aren’t actually that difficult to please–it’s just that their owners get picky about wanting a pretty coop. We found an inexpensive coop online and drove to Santa Rosa (a pleasant hour and a half drive from home) to pick it up. We also bought some feed and feeders.Our coop isn’t very pretty (photos to come later), but it’s not ugly, either. It looks like a rabbit hutch.As of now, we have feed, feeders, and a coop…but no chickens.Until two days ago, we were still a little up-in-the-air about what kind of chickens to get. Y really liked the idea of getting heritage chickens, which are the breeds of chicken that have become relatively rare because of farm breeding. He was mostly focusing on Delaware chickens. We don’t want to have to wait 6 months for eggs, though, so we didn’t want to raise chicks. And all the Delawares around here are chicks.Then Y found a woman on Craigslist who sells Rhode Island Red chickens. They’ve just started laying, and they’re apparently quite friendly! So on Sunday, Y and I will be driving north again to pick up our chickens. We have decided to name them FiFi (I’m stealing this name from Sarah) and Petunia.
Hey look! My chicken might look like this! Image from here.
To be totally honest, this is mostly Y’s project. I will dutifully feed and water these chickens (and grudgingly probably clean their dang coop, too), but Y is the brains behind the operation.
I will be the documentarian, though. You can expect to see many photos of chickens in the months to come! I hope you’re riveted.