Hi, I'm Mary. Just getting started in the chicken world as an adult on my own. I have been around chickens most of my childhood. For a few years I was in charge of the chicks after they were hatched (including rounding up the ones that hatched somewhere other than the prepared nesting boxes) and until they were big enough to let loose in the yard. We never really had any specific breed, they all just intermingled and lived in the barn. We did have a Rhode Island Red once and one that laid multiple colored eggs. We also had guineas, ducks, and geese. I am trying to decide what type of coop I am going to build, but have yet to find a building plan that I think I can follow. Most of them are going to require some adaptation in order for me to be able to use them way down here in all this heat. I guess I also need to figure out what type of chicken I want to have as that will probably help in the coop area. My favorite chickens are Cochin bantums. I like the black ones, though any with feather covered feet are just adorable in my book. I also like the white crested black Polish. I'll be poking around the forums here trying to make some better informed decisions. Thanks in advance for all the advice!