...................My Backyard Flock
I've been raised up with chickens my entire life but was never really interested in them mostly because I was young back then and that I really just didn't care for them. I think I was around 9 or 11 when I started to take interest the animals and started helping out with the farm willingly. Ever since I took interest in these animals we started to improve things like living conditions and space for them to forage in since I will admit we didn't have the cleanest coops or the biggest runs. It was just me and my dad and mom taking care of the animals since my other (6) siblings weren't interested in the animals or the farm. Over the years I've been gradually taking over all the chicken business and adding more chickens to the flock since it was mostly made up of leghorns and Road Island Reds. I now have over 20 different types of breeds in my flock.. I mean... You've got to have color in you flock.... Right?
Things were nice and simple until one of my Jersey Giants who I have given the nickname 'Mama' Decided to go broody and hatch out a clutch of 16 eggs. Out of the 16, 7 turned out to be cockerels. And so me being all 'Oh I can't kill my own birds!' decided to put an ad for them on craigslist. All seven of them found nice homes surprisingly and I even traded a few roos for bantams and a turkey, (We'll get back to the turkey ) What was suppose to be 4 adult bantams turned into 10 bantams. 3 chicks and 7 adults. And 16 seramas... Aren't I just terrible? All are comfy and cozy living in our old chicken coop with an acre of property fenced in. These were pictures taken just a few weeks after I got them.
During all of this my Dad came up to me saying one of his friends at work had a turkey she desperately needed to re-homed and I said i'd take her. A few days later my dad drove me to her place and I immediately noticed that this was no place for any animal. It was a big town with old houses about 5 feet away from each other. The lady's house was small and filled with dogs and and goat. When we got to her backyard, which was a tiny enclosed space, I saw chickens and a few ducks sitting in their own waste. The turkey looked horrible. She was pale, Over-fed, and missing all of her feathers around her vent and chest. But the worst part about her was the smell
When we got home I cleaned out my old Goat house and put half a bale of clean straw for bedding, And gave her proper game feed and clean water with a nice open space with luscious Green grass. I swear she spent so much time outside eating grass we had to lock her up for a bit. She was the sweetest thing ever and so I gave her the name Dorthy. This is her three months after we took her in. (Ignore the turkey in the background)
Even though Dorthy was spoiled with love I thought she was feeling a bit lonely and this was by the time when I was trying to get rid of my roosters and one of the people interested in our roosters just so happened to have a couple of 7 week old poults and gave us one of the toms whom I named Bruce. He was so little when we got him but all he did was grow...
And grow... *Yawns*
I soon realized after seeing how big Bruce was getting that we needed wayy more hens. Back to craigslist I go! Was able to find 3 Royal palm hens for sale but one turned out to be a tom.. We had also bought some Guineas along with the turkeys.
Still not enough hens I asked my old Horseback riding instructor if she had any hens she'd be willing to give us and she kindly gave us three. Two ended being killed by a fox which was quickly taken care of (If you catch my drift)
During all of this one of our White plymouth Rocks went under my nose and and hatched out a clutch of 5 ducks that belonged to our khaki campbell pair.
Soo apparently hatching ducks was becoming a trend in the chicken world and so Mama went and tried to brood her own clutch of duck eggs and things didn't go as well and ended up losing all 7 of her eggs. Me being the loving owner I am went and ordered her 10 sexed ducklings, Two Welshes, two Rouens, two Buffs, Two Khakis, and two cayugas. Unfortunately one of the Welshes ended up dying due to shipping (Since Apparently Their hatchery was Not in Ohio but in California. It was their main office that was in Ohio *Insert eye-roll here*) But anyways Mama gladly took them all in as her own.
So while enjoying all the new fuzzy members of the flock it suddenly came to me.. "Where on earth am i going to keep all these animals?!" And so I went up to my dad asking if he could help build a duck coop and he agreed to help.
"Now wait, Why are there roosts in a duck coop?" You may ask! Well after finishing it I realized this would make a great chicken coop and well.. yeah.. "But what about the ducks-" For that I've turned my 10 x 12 shed into the duck house.
Lets fast forward to November. Me and my mom were browsing the internet looking at heritage chicken breeds and next thing you know you have 60 chicks coming in the mail. On November the 13th 62 healthy lil' chickies came in all cute and fuzzy!
Hm? Oh... you're still here? Wow really? (You really need another hobby besides raising chickens) Well If you're still here might as well share a couple more pictures. Enjoy~
(The one and only famous model Squishy the White Easter Egger~)
Thats it! You're free at last! Thanks for reading~