Well, let me start off with the basics. I have a wonderful hubby who shares my love for animal. Not always a good thing, the bleeding heart for sick, lost or cast off animals has been a dual edge. Over the 17 years of marriage our collection has been wide. Out of the 17 years 13 was spent moving every 2 years years. Everytime was a pain transplanting our pets. But both of us being the the Navy we had fun most of the time. Long deployments not being the fun part. So, about 5 years ago we agreed moving every 2 year and children don't mix well. Leaving the Navy and having kids was a huge leap. Since then we have 2 great kids. The start of this year we began looking for a place out of the city so our kids could play outside in the dirt. And a place I could have more than 2 chickens. Which in the city we lived in was not allowed.
Which was silly my 2 hens didn't smell as bad as the dogs next door and they made a lot less noise. Anyway, we looked at a lot of places in a large price range and area. A 25 mile circle from hubbys work. When we picked this place it wasn't the first choice of houses. It needed and still needs work. Took us 2 months of working on it just to be able to live in it. Since it was a forcloser the owners took everything and broke what they couldn't take. But it wasn't the house that we loved. A house can always be rebuilt. It was the 2 acres with a creek sometimes lol and the half wooded half grass land that got us. the wooded part is on a hill the grass flat. Bonus is it's in the best grade school dist for the county.
So after the inside redo of the house we set out to build a coop/run. We both knew we wanted a flock of chickens. I wanted enought to provide us with eggs and meat as well as some family. We looked at alot of pen,coops and runs. After we came up with a plan of all the extras we wanted, we ended up with a coop big enough to roost 40 or so chickens of the large size. We got started we now have it finished enough to house the chickens and the coop is like Fort Knox. It got hot and we stopped. Now fall is coming and we will finish up. All that is left is insulation under the coop,covering up the insulation under the coop, finishe the siding, roof the rest of the coop and close in the closet.
We have collected as many chickens as I intend to this year. I have 25 ATM 6 diffrent breeds. but I only intend to breed 2 types come spring. Blue Copper Marans and Easter Eggers that lay olive eggs. I look forward to making these breeds and doing the best I can gene wise. The lack of Olive Eggers and Marans in my area was the driving force for them. I think they are beautiful birds that as a bonus lay awsome eggs and are meaty too. As part of this project I have found the need to get an incubator. The one I picked I of course can not afford LOL. So, I have run across some nice looking one that are made from cabinets. Since we have gutted our kitchen and baths I kept a couple to work with. After we convert it to a brooder, it will look right at home in the house. Something we do not have to hide and can live in the den. Everyone loves watching chicks hatch! Thanks for looking
Well, we have had a set back this fall. I was hoping to finish off the coop this fall. But, it didn't happen. My father got sick in OCT and then passed away in NOV. So a lot of energy has been spent else where. He has 2 houses that are in need of work and all the red tape that goes along with not having a will has not made it easy. To make things goes a bit easier we culled some chickens and now are back down to 24 hens and 1 rooster. That is the max for the perches in the coop at the moment. It helps to make everyone sit close when it gets cold out. The window isnt insulated and the bottom isn't either. The walls, doors and ceiling are. It does not get real cold here. I have seen it get down to 0 a few times but it never last more than a day or 2. But if I think they are getting too cold I will hang a heat lamp out there. But I realy don't like the idea. We all know if you are in a nice warm room then go out in 0 weather it is harder to adjust. The problem will be keeping fresh water. I am thinking of getting a birdbath heater.
Anyway, I am just waiting till JAN things will be better. I will be closer to getting things done. If I can just get thru this holiday season with my mind intact. The loss of my dad has hit hard. He was my crutch. If something was broken we could fix it or tell you how to fix it. If I needed anything he'd be there. For the first time in my life I will have to figure things out without having him to bounce my ideas off of. I am thankful my hubby took up the slack with the kids while all this went down. He couldn't have done been a bigger help.