Adventures with Chicken people and South America comes to Oregon...

Discussion in 'Pictures & Stories of My Chickens' started by BonneTerreChick, Apr 12, 2012.

  1. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Just thought I would share this adventure, as I think there may be a couple people out there that would like to follow it.....

    Preface: I live in Oregon. My family is from the Pacific Northwest (PNW). My mom had a pet duck as a kid. I didnt. We are not "Chicken people". No one I know or knew growing up has/had chickens. Chicken and eggs were things you bought from the store. My family (DH, myself, the child and the menagerie) are not Chicken people or chickens in the case of the menagerie! I must remember, NOT Chicken people!

    The beginning....

    12 years ago-The child wants a duck. She talks about it all the time. She asks for one for her birthday, Christmas, Easter...she wants a duck. No duck.

    3 years ago- The child wants a chicken. She wants a Frizzle chicken. REALLY bad! At every opportunity she brings up a Frizzle chicken. Just one! She says she will take care of it. Been there done that. NO chicken!
    She does research and knows of "good" breeds. And talks about things like "docile" and "handles captivity well".....WHAT?
    She keeps talking about a Frizzle chicken, sliding it into conversations, bringing it up to Grandma, showing Grandma Frizzle chickens on the computer.....

    2 years ago- The child grabs my hand..."Com' ere mom!" and drags me across the store. "LOOK"....chicks...."arent they cute?" Grandma happened to be with us. We come home with 7 little chicks. Build a house, put up a run. The chicks grow up(a lot faster than the child, Thank God!) The chickens free range most days...and lay eggs, and more eggs....

    1 year ago- I open the fridge to get milk for my cereal. The fridge is crammed with egg cartons...probably 6-7 18 ct cartons.....ok, maybe it was only 3 cartons. Where's the milk? DH says he is going to sell eggs. He does. I open the fridge, I need three eggs for my cake. None. NO eggs?!?!? I guess he is really selling eggs.
     
  2. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Remember...NOT chicken people.

    Now....

    This spring- OUR hens are getting older. So, I decide WE needed some "replacement" chicks. Maybe 3-5 new chickens. I also have a few friends who are also looking for some new hens. They only want pullets for the their eggs, no roosters.

    Simple answer: We each go down to our local feed stores and buy chicks this spring. Thats how we got our first chickens. They are ok. They lay eggs-we eat and sell the eggs. No problem.

    HA! not me! I want specific breeds of chickens! (Now OUR chickens become MY chickens, notice the transition.) They are, of course, breeds that the store doesnt get or gets a real limited/uncertain supply of once in a while. (Did I mention that I am a bit impatient and when I want to do something I may want to do it small, but it never ends up that way!)
     
  3. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    We have 2 Silver-Laced Wyandottes, 2 Buff Orpingtons, 1 Ameraucana, and two banty. 1 Banty is a light Brahma, who DH insists was dropped on her head as an egg, and the other...well....thats unknown. But she, Midnight, is my favorite chicken-IF I were to have a favorite chicken! Most were picked because of the child's research into "docile" and "handles captivity", etc. The banty came home because I have this thing with extremes-small, tall, big, etc.

    So what we have, coupled with research on the internet, gave me my list of breeds.

    My list:

    Frizzle(first and foremost!)
    Silkies
    Austrolorps
    Orpingtons
    Ameraucana
    (notice no where does my list say South America or Quechua. South America is probably a nice place, but its not the first place I think of when I think chicken)
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012
  4. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    So what to do?

    I talk with one of the friends, Rhonda (that wants hens) and she says that she was going to get the old incubator from her mom and get some eggs from her local feed store to hatch. What a great idea! Hand raised chicks are so much more friendly than those chicks from the store, she tells me. I mull it over, for maybe 5 minutes, and decide on my mission!

    GET HATCHING EGGS! I will go get some eggs and hatch them. WAIT! Who will "hen" the eggs/chicks? I work, my DH works and we each work more than 40 hours a week at times. Ah, the child. She is 16, she will "hen" them. No, she has "activities", school, prom....do I really want some eggs and wee chicks with maleable minds dependent on the whims of a teenager? She is a responsible and good teen, but a teen never the less! Ah, Rhonda, the unsuspecting friend! She is a stay at home mom and she was going to hatch some eggs anyway, she can "hen" my eggs!
     
  5. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    The feed store has recently moved into a BIGGER building. The reason I know it moved...DH disappears one Saturday afternoon. He is gone for hours(seemed like it) and doesnt tell me where he is going. He comes home and says. The feed store moved. Hmmmm.....[​IMG]


    So, one day not too long ago....Unsuspecting DH, the child and I walk into the local feed store. He is buying dog food or something. The child drags us both to "the chick aisle". And we look, nothing, wait maybe some Marans? Yep, there are few. NO! no chicks! I want EGGS! So I "sneak" a 3 foot by 3 foot box into the cart, hoping he wont notice til we have purchased it(because we couldnt take it back, he NEVER takes anything back) and we are in the truck.

    DH takes the big box out of the cart so the cashier can ring it up. He looks at me, lifts one eyebrow(is it the evil eye, or a questioning glance? I dont know, but I pretend it is the latter). Doesnt say one word. Neither do I. I pay and get the receipt! I'm golden! We are out of there!

    We get home. I set the box on the table, in the dining room. As the day progresses, I casually throw bric-a-brac(always wanted to use that word!) on it. A skein of yarn, some junk mail, a spray bottle(oops! is that a ring? cant return it now!) and other assorted. Looking at the end of the day...gosh, no one will notice that its there or that it hasnt always been there....
     
  6. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    A week or so later....

    We take the nearly 2 hour drive to visit my friend Rhonda. They comment on seeing us in person so much of late. I casually say that we have been missing them and that we have decided that we must get out and visit our friends more. DH gives me the eyebrow thing again.

    Later, DH's are outside playing with RC tanks or something. I bring up Rhonda's chickens, she lives in the big city where they have ordinances and such, and we talk chicken.

    Remember, NOT chicken people.

    I ask about her need to have babies, I mean chicks, in the house again. She tells me that her chickens are getting older, not laying as well, you know middle-aged chicks, like us! They are starting to drop off(not like us!) and so she wants some new blood. She says she wants SMALL chickens to match her SMALL hen house and yard. She wants Silkies, banty, friendly, in-your-pocket sorts of chickens. Hmmmm.....

    I ask about the incubator she gets from her mom. She states that she hasnt got it yet and isnt certain when she will be able to make the trip to her mom's. Her mom lives over the big mountains(snow, ice and all sorts of things we who live in the rain know little about<grin>) and over 3 hours away. I gently say that is too bad and wonder aloud if there is anything I can do. Then I mention that I would be willing to get an incubator, or maybe I have one laying around somewhere(under a skein of yarn, some junk mail, etc, perhaps?), and she could hatch some eggs for the both of us. Heck, I would even be willing to find some hatching eggs somewhere and purchase some for the both of us, IF she will "hen" the eggs/chicks.

    "Come here said the spider to the fly" LOL, she is almost in my web. EGGS! Hatching! Reality!

    Rhonda says that sounds like a good thing and agrees to "hen" the eggs.

    Good thing! I didnt know what I would do with the box otherwise!

    DH's return to the house. Rhonda regales them with our plan.
    DH turns, looks at me and I try for a look of innocence. He gives me the eyebrow, and I am almost positive my look didnt work.

    Oh, well, I have my mission....
     
  7. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    MY EGGS!...oh! I mean OUR hatching eggs....

    Prior to going to Rhonda's, back when I was researching breeds on the interenet, I "just happened" to do a few(ok, maybe more than a few) searches for hatching eggs. REALITY-I tried several different searches.

    The first were too local in focus and so I came up with some pretty "shady" sites and found things I wasnt looking for, some were downright scary! But nothing that fit! DANG!
    So I broadened my searches some. More results that I didnt want and different additional "shady" sites, My searches also showed sites my computer, in all its wisdom, said were not "verified". I wonder what it takes to get "verified" by a computer? I am sure that if I knew where to look, or had the time to search the computer I could find out more about "verification". To be honest, it has become one of those things I just use, though I question it in the back of my mind, and have been satisfied with the results(plus, my computer hasnt dropped dead with a virus since I started using it). This time, I wasnt satisfied with the results! Verified-shmerisfied! NOT finding those eggs!
    Broadened the search further, FINALLY!, some sites that were actually selling eggs. It always amazes me what you get with search criteria, there are definitely times I wish I thought more like a search-engine! Wouldnt that be wonderful to have your first search get you the results you wanted the first time! Anyway, I went through the "verified" results. Found some small farms that didnt have the breeds I wanted, some informational sites that werent selling, and some "shady" sites that were "verified"(they had flashing lights and dancing girls, if you get my meaning!~-they certainly werent selling the kind of eggs I was looking for!!) . I found some hatcheries that had minimum orders for each breed, what would I do with 125 chicks? Hmmmm, NO, wait! Better not even think those thoughts! Small, I want small, small numbers of small(and not so small) hatching eggs!
    I found some listings that looked more promising....many had "backyardchicken" in the web address. Hmmm, sounds like a place to check out! Yes, it was "verified"(though at this point I MIGHT have gone to a few sites that werent-out of pure desperation. My chicken biological clock was ticking-read impatient! How do you think I found out about Kegel eggs?! Who knew searching for hatching eggs could be such a diverse learning experience?)! So I went to BYC.

    And another universe opened before my very eyes(sometimes I swear the internet is like outerspace, millions of planetary systems to discover and explore, and I am "going where no man has gone before"?)! A universe, it appeared, that several thousand new and old "chicken people" had found, explored and lived in.....

    So I explored this alien universe a bit....
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2012
  8. BonneTerreChick

    BonneTerreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Remember, NOT chicken people!

    BYC, backyard chickens...

    I know of several people who have a few(read 2-9) chickens, in their back yards, in large towns and cities(in fact, a local college town has arranged tours of some of these very people's chickens, coops and yards). This is the image I saw in my head-people raising small numbers of chickens in their backyards! I didnt realize how BIG some folks' backyards are or that backyard didnt necessarily mean "backyard"!

    I read more and learned more. There is a plethora(another word I have always wanted to use) of information at BYC! And EGGS! Hatching eggs! for sale. YIPPEEE!

    Wait! RULES?!?!

    Oh, my, I had to join, had to have a certain number of posts before participating in auctions....DANG!...

    So I joined BYC.

    And started posting. Not chicken people....where to post? Crafts, other animals, knitting, and spinning, all things I have or have done! YES! another step closer to my hatching eggs(ok, ok, maybe OUR hatching eggs).

    And post....gosh, will I ever reach that magic number?

    I keep an eye out for possible providers of hatching eggs. I note that we only want about 14 chicks total between the four ladies who have stated that they want chicks from this experience. That is 14 chicks, all hens/pullets(LOL) 4-5 Banty/Silkie for my friend Rhonda, one silkie for Kim and 4 LF hens for another friend. And lol, one of each for me...no, I mean one of each of my chosen breeds! So 5 hens/pullets for me! But who could/would provide such a small number of chicks and so many diverse breeds/sizes?

    And I keep posting for months to make that magical number for participation! Ok, maybe it was days or hours, it just seemed to take FOREVER!
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012
  9. MammasBabies

    MammasBabies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 13, 2012
    Portland, Oregon
    Love the story. Please write more. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2012
  10. Aeropennchick

    Aeropennchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 20, 2012
    Southern PA
    Haha what a cute story! And who can say no to five cute little peepers? Five or twenty, that is. [​IMG]
     

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