Well I just joined and have been to the site many time to gather as much information as I could as I learned all about chickens! Have learned lots!!! Let me first begin as saying, I am getting close to becoming an animal horder, lol I have 2 dogs (Cleo girl, my red siberian husky, and Buddy boy my german sheperd) also have 4 cats, Kiwi, Onyx, Sweetums and Ollie and then there's Bugsy, you rascally rabbit! Oh and I forgot to mention my hubby and 19 year old daughter. Last September, while visiting my g/f's farm I suddenly came home with a 2 month old white silkie chick. Living up in Northern Alberta, Canada, and winter just around the corner I realized that I could not convert our old garden shed for the chicken fast enought so I just made a quick little 1x2 1/2ft enclosure and chicken wire roof. We have a large empty woodshop attached to our home and so this is were the silkie and my bugsey hung out for the long long winter! I didn't know hardly anything about this kind of chicken so I found this site and all the information to help get me by and then some, thank you for being there when I really needed the help. It wasn't until late February 2011 that my silkie was to be named Silkie-boy Not Silkie-girl, as early in the morning I started hearing this most horrific noise coming from the woodshop as I was sitting down to morning coffee, I went running in (thinking that the chicken was dying or something) only to finally realize that my chicken was coming into his own and was crowing, too funny the first few days. Well it is now beginning of August 2011 and about a month ago I went over to my g/f's farm and came home with HennyPenny the big black bossie bitch hen!! Henny is 3 times larger than my Silkie-boy (which I forgot to mention earlier I hand raised) so I don't know if he's gotten lucky yet, he sure does put on the show tho! Middle of July my husband came home from my g/f's farm with an 3-4 week old chick which is visually impaired and was abandoned, knowing I have a soft spot my g/f called me with the story of this chick/hen and I couldn't say no. So now this chick is named Holly and now lives in Silkie-boy's old pen within the chicken run, when Henny and Silkie-boy get out to roam the garden I let Holly out to roam the run and so far she isn't as blind as I thought so she on her first day out in the run by herself was able to get up the 2 steps to climb up into the coop itself, found the food and water and hung out under the nesting boxes.
While HennyPenny the big black bossie hen is no more. She managed to get through my fence Tuesday night and wonder too close to my dog Cleo and got scared and ran and hide. Feathers everywhere. I looked and called until midnight and then just went to bed and got up the next morning early and started to look and call her again. Unfortunately I did hear her cluck but the wind was blowing and I couldn't tell the direction in which it was coming, as I came round from behind their run I looked into the field and their was my dog Buddy with Henny in his mouth and he was tossing her in the air! I screamed for Buddy to drop her and ran to Henny, who was still alive but barely, I picked her up and ran back to my back yard/garden, Henny only lived a couple of more minutes and died in my arms, I hope she realized that she was home. My Silkie-boy was very upset and I think I was in shock at seeing what my dog Buddy was capable of! While Buddy is now chained up all day long and I still have a hard time looking at him and not wanting to hurt him and Cleo for what they both had a hand in. But alas I won't. So now Holly the little chick is getting along with Silkie-boy and running around the coop and run like she owns it now that Henny is no longer a threat to her.
August 17th I got 5 new chicks, hopefully 5 new hens. I have 2 frizzle, 1 gray called Lil Friz, and 1 white called Flighty Whitey, 1 orange/gold called Goldie, and ended up with 2 roosters (Oops) 1 brown speckle with white neck called Magoo and the other Black speckle and white neck called Hawkeye. My Silkie-boy and Holly are adjusting well to the new group.
Well it's been 3 weeks and all the Chickens are getting along well. Silkie-boy has decided that he will be the boss of Holly and Lil Friz and Flighty Whitey, and Hawkeye seems to be with Goldie. No one for Magoo, but that is about to change for him! It's the end of summer up here in Northern Alberta and we have been invading with grasshoppers. My chickens are reaping the benefits, they see me coming with the food bucket in hand, with fresh picked grass, clover, and dandilions and know that there are grasshoppers in the mix for them and the fight is on to see who gets the most.
September 15th I got 5 more new hens/chicks. 2 black ones, Raven and Inky, 1 Orange with black tipped feathers, Bertha, another goldie orange, but she is long necked and long legged, and really long tail, and looks like an roadrunner chicken so her name is Beep-Beep, and a brown hen names brownie. Intergrating this last group into the fold wasn't that hard. Around Sept 25 for my partial blind hen Holly, Bertha and Beep-Beep started picking on her and then my other hens from the first group also started picking on Holly and I finally had to take Holly out of the run and coop and place her in a cage/coop on her own. Holly is quite happy now and is really happy when she sees me every morning. She is very vocal and like to cluck alot.
Oct 13th I unfortunately made a really bad mistake and to help out my girlfriend (who has given me all of my chickens) I took a dozen roo's from her place and killed them for meat at my place, I had to locked up my chickens in their coop for an day and an half. On Monday Oct 17th while in the run and feeding my chickens I noticed something odd with my Silkie-boy's beak, later in the afternoon again feeding I sat and watch him very closely and then realised that his beak was separated and lifting up. I picked him up and took him into the house so that my hubby could take pics and they are post in the Emergency/injury section of the site here. I am very worried about my Silkie-boy. I really love this little guy but if I am told that there is not hope for his recovery then I will have no choice but to let him go and rest in peace, beside his HennyPenny. That's it for now updates later.