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capayvalleychick's Member Page

By capayvalleychick, Jan 11, 2012 | Updated: Feb 20, 2013 | |
  1. capayvalleychick

    KIM'S LIFE WITH CHICKENS
    While living in the suburbs in the '90s, we had a few backyard chickens, which didn't co-exist well with the German Shepherd. My husband built a huge double hutch that housed a rabbit and a hen. The hutch was elevated, located in our garden and the compost pile was underneath the hutch.

    When I was 40 yrs. old, we moved to the country. One of the first things that I did was to get chickens.
    I bought 6 chicks from a feed store, which all turned out to be roosters! I kept one Rhode Island Red and an Ameraucana, which I named Rocky & Ringo. Someone from my old town gave me a hen that didn't seem to like living in a small backyard. She was happy here. I called her Hessy. At the time, I thought she was a light colored RIR, but she may have been a New Hampshire.
    A neighbor told me that there was no need to buy chickens, since there were so many feral birds roaming the rural township area. He caught some of these wild chickens for me. I kept them cooped for 3 weeks and after that, they could free range my ranch during the day and would return to their coop at night.
    So, that was my first real flock. I enjoyed them and learned much that I didn't know about chickens. They were always healthy & more intelligent than I thought chickens could be. They went broody & raised many, many chicks. They were beautiful-all kinds of colors & interesting variety.

    [​IMG]


    I think that those little feral hens were the best mothers that I've ever seen!
    My favorite was Pepper, a small black hen.

    That tenacious hen fought off a hawk one day, when it flew down to snatch her babies. Pepper taught her chicks how to chase off rattlesnakes, so we valued her ranging around the yard.

    A few years after having my first flock, I learned about the ALBC and Heritage Chickens.



    I decided to raise a breed of chickens from their conservation priority list.
    I didn't know where to get Heritage Chickens, so I ordered some Silver Gray Dorkings from Mcmurray Hatchery.


    [​IMG]Here is Big Jim, a Silver Gray Dorking rooster, and some of his Silver Gray Dorking hens
    [​IMG]


    In 2009, I ordered SGD hatching eggs from Jeanne Fingar of Black Diamond Guest Ranch in Montana. My friend, Fran, has an incubator and hatched them for me. Out of 2 dozen eggs, only one rooster made it. Fran named him Lucky.

    In 2009, I ordered SGD hatching eggs from Jeanne Fingar of Black Diamond Guest Ranch in Montana. My friend, Fran, has an incubator and hatched them for me. Out of 2 dozen eggs, only one rooster made it. Fran named him Lucky. ​

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