Hello! My name is Kathy, but some of you know me as "Kat" (which is my childhood nickname). I'm a relatively new poultry hobbyist in Maryland, acquiring my first silkies in the fall of 2008. After over 20 years of keeping and raising parrots and tortoises, I got into poultry purely by accident - but it didn't take me long to find out how rewarding (and addicting!) chickens can be! I found and joined BYC in January of 2009, but this is my first attempt at creating a page here, so please bear with me!
My husband and I live in an old farmhouse on a few acres near the Chesapeake Bay - we like to call our place Fox Hill Farm, but its really more of a "zoo" than anything else. We share our little corner of paradise with a variety of critters, but in keeping with the poultry theme of BYC, I'll only discuss and post photos of my chickens and ducks here (other than the above photo of our sulcata tortoise, BamBam). You're more than welcome to visit my primary home on the web as well tho, which is KRS Images - I'm an amateur photographer (hence the watermarks on my photos) who loves all things nature related, and therefore, the majority of my photos are of plant and animal life. But because of the time involved, I will only post a partial collection of my poultry photos here on BYC.
I'm the poultry keeper of our family - my husband just works here... I currently have a laying flock that consists partly of brown egg layers such as barred rock, cuckoo marans, dominique, black sex link, welsummer, light brahma and buff orpington mixed hens - the rest are Easter eggers and silkie/EE crosses that lay both large and small eggs in various shades of blue, green, pink, peach, and tan. I just LOVE collecting these eggs, because I find a rainbow of colors every time I check a nest box - even the brown eggs come in a wide array of shades and hues!
I also keep several other bantam breeds just for breeding projects, broodiness and/or pet qualties (and the occasional batch of bite sized pickled or deviled eggs), such as silkies, seramas, bantam cochins and bantam Polish. Plus, I'm in the process of setting up small breeding flocks of LF Blue/Splash Laced Red Wyandottes, and mille fleur/porcelain/lavender d'uccles, and I have a few colored and white mandarin ducks that live in my greenhouse amongst my orchids (also another hobby of mine). Of course, there are some "odd ball" birds around here, too, who are the participants in, and/or results of, several projects I've got going on, like BLR and porcelain cochins, crested and cuckoo seramas, and chocolate/khaki and blue/green egg laying silkies, sizzles and frizzles.
While I do not show my birds (only for lack of time, because it sounds like fun!), I do have a keen interest in poultry health and genetics. Therefore, I have chosen to acquire all of my poultry from reputable breeders and certain notable lines, as opposed to getting chicks from hatcheries - many of these breeders are BYC members, such as M@M@TOFOUR, SunAngel, chickygirl2, Crunchie, baregretchen, AmeraucanaMD, upintheholler, kbbeale, swheat, and several others. Many years ago, I learned about breeding for health, temperament, and conformation - in THAT ORDER - and I made it my policy to "breed the best to the best, and hope for the best." That policy now extends to my poultry projects, and I choose my stock with great care - however, I make no claims that *all* the offspring from my birds will be "show quality." At the very least, I can only guarantee that they will be healthy, good natured pets - but because of the selective breeding that I practice, I'm hopeful that some may eventually bring home ribbons!
I frequent the "Breeds, Genetics & Showing" forum on BYC mostly, but I visit other sections, too. I've learned SOOOO much here, and have met some of the NICEST and most generous people!!! I always enjoy meeting new folks that share my interests tho, so feel free to drop me a line! Thanks for stopping by - see you on the forums!!!
~ Kat ~
(...by the Chesapeake Bay, with mandarin ducks, a flock of chickens and a herd of turtles...)