Didsbury, AlbertaI live in a very surburban neighbourhood that backs onto fields in a small town. I used to keep chickens when I lived in Ontario and loved having them. I had three Barred Rocks (Heather, Sage, and Rosemary) and two sex-linked black crosses (Brownie and Goldie). When I moved out to Alberta I found a 'forever home' for my girls and all but two are doing very well still (Heather was eaten by a fox and Rosmary did not deal with the move to her new home well).
I miss the happy chattering that the chickens do and of course the eggs. After getting to know my neighbours, I have decided to get some chickens here. I have told them that chickens are the perfect pet- cute, quiet, full of personality and they have the added bonus of providing food! Because I live in a very residential area I have decided to choose bantams. I started out with three Rhode Island Reds (Egglatine, Chocolate and Shelly - she unfortunately died a week after bringing her home), two Wynadottes (Nugget and Smokey), and a Partridge Cochin (Fluffy Feet), I also had a Old English Game hen chick that was unfortunately everyones favorite that did not survive the first week (Charolette). I don't know who will turn out to be hens or roosters but I have my suspision Chocolate is a roo- that one has attitude, noisy, is feathering out different from the rest and seems to have a different shape- very leggy.
I used a large rubbermaid as a brooder with towels then paper towels as bedding. At about three weeks they were getting too rowdy to stay in the rubbermaid but it was much too cold to move them outside so they graduated to the spare bathtub. I have newspaper with mowed dried grass as the bedding. They seem quite happy there for now. I can't see moving them outside to a coop for quite a while yet as it still gets quite cold at night here (5c).
Here are a few pictures of my flock on their first day getting to know the outdoors, they stayed on the blanket and hated the grass. They are about one month old (June 28, 2011).
Nugget- wynadotte Egglatine-Rhode Is Red, Fluffy Feet- Cochin, Nugget and Chocolate- Rhode Is Red
Smokey and Nugget- Wynadottes Chicks in their new bathtub brooder (June 17)