Hello from Western Pennsylvania!

Jun 7, 2017
Southwestern Pennsylvania
Anyone else from my area?

I live on three acres and am interested in having an improved level of sustainability. Chickens would be a hard sell for my family, but we are first-time duck owners. We got four Khaki Campbells in April, three girls and a boy. We are expecting first eggs to come in August, they just started living outside full-time. In the years to come, I would like to get goats. I'm looking at La Manchas or Nubians in particular. We're taking things slow so not to get overwhelmed within the first year.

For house pets, I have a cat and two fancy mice, but I also live with my brother's cat, my dad's toy poodle, a friend's beagle, and my sister's leopard gecko, tropical fish, Syrian hamster, cat, toy poodle, and guinea pig (yes she is crazy). The ducks were my sister's idea, she came home with them. Our parents had no interest in them as egg-layers, but I think I've reoriented the family to see them as a great alternative to the grocery store eggs from unhappy chickens.

I've been prepper-minded since middle school or so, and that's led to wanting a homestead and a semi-sustainable food supply. During the Recession we were forced to relocate. We went from suburban to rural and ended up purchasing our current property, complete with a cistern, natural spring, greenhouse, second garage, radio tower, bomb shelter, etc. As a teenager, I saw it as a downgrade, but now genuinely I love it out here!

I'm partial toward Silkie chickens, but I don't think I could justify getting some when we'll have all the eggs we could ever need now. I'm also considering raising a hog in the distant future. We don't have the greenest of thumbs yet, but we're pretty solid onion fans with many "volunteers" from last season. I'll be looking to get some fruit trees this summer, and I'm trying to grow German thyme this year.

Any advice you may have is welcome!

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Aug 26, 2009
Out to pasture
Welcome to the Backyard chickens flock, so glad you joined us

Silkies are not great layers but, they tend to be excellent broodies. When they are broody you can put any breed fertile eggs under them & they will hatch & raise as their own. They aren't very big though so that limits the number of eggs they can cover.

they also need more predator protection because they don't fly and with their big crests and beard they do not see well. They usually don't roost either but usually pile up in a corner on the floor.

You may want to check out the "silkie thread," to learn more about them.
Which reminds me, they are one of the most difficult breeds to sex before 4-5 mos. of age and sometimes not till they crow or lay.

I think if you wanted a "broody" breed you might rather have Buff Orpingtons, they are usually docile, can cover more eggs, and are easier to sex.

Pork Pie

Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Jan 30, 2015
Hello and welcome to BYC.

You'll find lots of info in the Learning Centre - https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/category/learning-center.11/ and if you have a specific topic in mind, just type it in the search box - there's a wealth of information on past and present threads.

Each week, various topics are discussed, which can also be a great resource - https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/topic-of-the-week-thread-archive

You may wish to consider joining your state thread as it will put you in touch with other BYC members in your area - http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/270925/find-your-states-thread#post_3239224

All the best


Yorkshire Coop

Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Aug 16, 2014
Hi :welcome

Glad you could join the flock! Great links there for you to check out from CT.

Enjoy your time here on BYC and all the chicken chat :frow

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