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Hey, I know that Chicken Lady! Oh wait... that's ME!!! *UPDATE* 5-14

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by JennsPeeps, May 9, 2009.

  1. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    'The Girls' Next Door features none other than yours truly: http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/pending/story/736008.html

    front page of the "Home & Garden" section of the newspaper pictures Curry, my 8-week-old BO (she was about 6 weeks here) and me! Here are our pics from the article:

    Caption: PHOTOS BY DREW PERINE/THE NEWS TRIBUNE - Jennifer Adrien holds Curry, a buff orpington chicken, near her coop at her home in South Tacoma. Gwen, a black star chicken, below, was a late egg producer, so Adrien put up an image of Obama for encouragement. “I wanted to inspire the chickens,” Adrien said. “Yes, you can lay an egg.”

    (That's actually our VERY perturbed RIR Nugget giving us the "stop looking at me while I'm working" stink eye, but... oh well [​IMG])

    Article text:
    "The Girls" Next Door
    DEBBIE CAFAZZO; The News Tribune
    Published: 05/09/09 1:20 am

    In the backyard, chicks are the new chic.

    In cities and suburbs around the country, chicken coops now claim equal billing with icons like the swing set or the barbecue.

    What was once the province of true farmers or back-to-nature hippies has become the new American way. Everybody, it seems, is flocking to the backyard chicken movement.

    Jenn Adrien of Tacoma joined the growing trend a year ago, with the addition of three hens – Gwen, Tribble and Nugget – to her household. This year, she added two more chicks, Curry and Croquette.

    Despite their names, Adrien wouldn’t think of putting any of her “girls” on the dinner table. Like most of the new backyard chicken hobbyists, she’s strictly in it for the eggs. And the fun.

    “We raise chickens to have fresh eggs, fertile compost for our gardens, free weeding, a place to get rid of table scraps and lots of backyard entertainment,” she says. There’s nothing more satisfying than sitting at her backyard table on a sunny morning, drinking tea, reading the paper and listening to her chickens cluck, she says.

    Two doors down the block, Adrien’s neighbor Kim Desmarais keeps six hens: Tamarind, Grey Cheeks, Pheasant, Gemini, Obsidian and Flapjack.

    “I grew up on a farm,” Desmarais says. “I like collecting the eggs. I like knowing where they came from.”

    The two households take turns caring for each others’ flocks when one family goes on vacation.

    Chris Benedict, agriculture extension agent for Washington State University Extension in Puyallup, says interest in chicken-raising is booming in Pierce County’s cities and suburbs.

    “People are trying to reconnect,” says Benedict. “They are realizing it’s important to reconnect with where food comes from.”

    He sees the backyard chicken movement as a natural outgrowth of other close-to-home food trends, including farmers markets, food co-ops and the practice of buying farm shares.

    Benedict is organizing a May 16 workshop for people interested in raising chickens. It will offer information to help people get started.

    Adrien says she and her boyfriend began raising chickens because “we wanted to do something that alleviated, even if just a little, the demand on cage-raised hens. The practice of de-beaking, cramped conditions and hens’ very short lives never sat right with me.”

    But to her surprise, her “girls” have become a fascinating hobby that “makes us laugh, provides food for our household and friends, and opens a door into a whole new community of like-minded people.”

    And BYC gets a nod twice in the print edition and once in online edition under, "What you need to know about raising your own city flock" here: http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/pending/story/736008.html

    What you need to know to raise your own city flock
    Lachlan Desmarais, 3, shows off one of his family’s six chickens at his home in Tacoma.

    Is it legal to have chickens in the city?

    Check with your local government, either county or city, to make sure of the rules.

    Tacoma bans roosters, but allows hens. Coops must be at least 50 feet from your neighbor’s house – unless your neighbor agrees in writing that it’s OK to have it closer, and you file the agreement with the city clerk. Animal control handles complaints about roaming chickens. The Health Department can help if your neighbors’ chickens cause you concerns over sanitation.

    In Puyallup, officials advise chicken owners to keep their chickens at least 50 feet away from their neighbors’ property. Also, chicken owners are subject to the city’s noise ordinance.

    In Olympia, you’re restricted to three pets – including dogs, cats and chickens. Roosters are not allowed. Feed must be stored in rat-proof containers.

    Where can I get baby chicks?

    They’re on sale in the spring at local feed and farm supply stores – the same place you can buy chicken feed. Ask which food is best for chicks, and which works for older birds.

    You can also buy chicks online and have them shipped to you. You’ll need a brooder to keep them warm. See more on raising chicks at www.backyardchickens.com.

    What about the coop?

    Designs run the gamut from basic to deluxe. They must provide protection from heat, rain and predators. And hens need a protected place to lay their eggs. Pine shavings work well as bedding.

    Jenn Adrien’s hens live in a wooden coop built by her boyfriend. It has a clear plastic lid to let in daylight, and it sits a few feet off the ground. A wooden ramp with chicken-sized steps provides access to their small fenced outdoor run. Kim Desmarais has a larger run for her flock, with a ramp that leads to a window in a large barnlike garden shed. Inside the shed, the hens nest in the drawers of an old dresser.

    Check out the book “Chicken Coops: 45 Building Plans for Housing Your Flock,” by Judy Pangman for ideas.

    If you don’t want to build from scratch, you can order pre-fab coops from sites such as www.omlet.us.

    The poop?

    Composting is the best way to deal with it, say experts. Don’t let it sit in your coop, or it will start to smell and attract vermin.

    Chicken manure mixed with green and woody yard trimmings makes good compost. Andy Bary, Washington State University soil scientist and compost expert, recommends using new compost made from manure on ornamentals or on vegetables that will be cooked. If you want to use it on vegetables that will be eaten raw, make sure the compost is at least a year old.

    The run?

    Be aware: Chickens love to eat grass. They’ll eat it all, along with your weeds, fruiting plants and shrubs, if you let them. One way around this problem, if you have a large yard, is to create a moveable run that lets chickens peck at the grass in one spot, but then is moved to a new spot before the area is denuded of vegetation. Another is to learn to live with a patch of bare ground.

    How many eggs will I get?

    Each hen can produce an egg roughly once a day – more during the longer days of summer, less in winter. They produce best in their first or second year of laying, then gradually taper off with age. Ornamental breeds lay fewer eggs than those bred for egg production, such as Orpingtons, Rhode Island reds or Plymouth Rocks.

    Should I worry about catching bird flu from my chickens? Should my neighbors worry?

    Most types of avian flu are not a threat to people, according to the Washington State Department of Agriculture. A. Singh Dhillon of the avian health lab at WSU Extension in Puyallup, says Washington has not recorded a case of the dangerous bird flu that killed people in Asia a few years back.

    If birds in your flock appear ill or die unexpectedly, you should report it to the state Agriculture Department.​
    Last edited: May 14, 2009

  2. maplesky7

    maplesky7 Flock Mistress

    Jun 14, 2008
    N. IL.
    ha ha...COOOL!!!

    My 3 year old dd says, "Mommy, she's in a cage." "Mommy, why that chicken in a bowl?" "Mommy, he naked."

    yeah for chickens!!
  3. maplesky7

    maplesky7 Flock Mistress

    Jun 14, 2008
    N. IL.
    "yes we can"... [​IMG] what? lay an egg? ha ha ha.
  4. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    Quote:Exactly! My girls came to point of lay last October, which was the height of the campaign season. I borrowed the sign idea to "inspire" them. I thought they were Democrats b/c they say "Barrrack" all the time. But apparently I've got Republicans b/c they selected the other nesting box. [​IMG]
  5. maplesky7

    maplesky7 Flock Mistress

    Jun 14, 2008
    N. IL.
    smart ladies.
  6. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    Quote:[​IMG] Be nice on my thread about me. [​IMG]
  7. maplesky7

    maplesky7 Flock Mistress

    Jun 14, 2008
    N. IL.

  8. Feathers Acres

    Feathers Acres Songster

    May 31, 2008
    LOL, yes we can! [​IMG]
  9. maplesky7

    maplesky7 Flock Mistress

    Jun 14, 2008
    N. IL.
    he he he...
  10. coffeelady3

    coffeelady3 Froths Milk for Hard Cash

    Jun 26, 2008
    Tacoma, WA
    Most importantly....eventually......Yes they did! (lay, I mean!)

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