I'm brand new here and terrifically excited!


Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
I'm building a coop - my friends and co-workers are totally amazed and probably thinking I'm nuts but are too polite to say so. I'm a 56 year old fat lady with extremely limited carpentry skills, but I have a new power drill and circular saw and Lowe's just loves to see me show up in the store. (I've build two goldfish ponds and some raised garden beds in the past year - also surprising my friends and co-workers, not to mention my older sister.)

I guess what I'm building is either an "Ark" (if yer a Brit) or a Tractor - which sounds very large equipmenty to me. I know *I* cannot move the thing around at all. And it sure looks like a girl built it... but I'm still very proud of what I've managed to construct.

I just picked up some linoleum for the interior floor of the upper "inside" part of the Tractor. (I will continue to call it a Coop, though.) And I KNOW - absolutely - I will build another, better coop next summer. But I've been lurking and reading danged near every post I can about coop construction and raising baby chicks.

In a couple of weeks I'm going to pick up four baby chicks from a local feed store (although I did investigate the on-line hatcheries listed at BYC) and I can't quite settle on which breeds to get. Six of them sound ... errrr... look like chickens I'd like to have in my small flock, but I think I should stick to four. There's only me, four cats and two mini-dachshunds to eat any eggs they produce, after all.

I'm thinking one of each: RIR, Plymouth Barred, Ameraucana, and a Red Star. These will be "pets that make my breakfast." But I'm drawn to EEs, Wyandottes, and a couple others I see on this site and have read about. What to do, what to do???

Anyway, here I am to say Howdy!

****Note: Just found the sample Intro template, oops! So here goes:
(1) Are you new to chickens / when did you first get chickens?
New, new, new, new. I've been bugging the folks at the feed store for information, staring adoringly at the chicks (when they still had them available), and wanting to get everything ready ahead of time.

(2) How many chickens do you have right now?
Zero. I WANT to get four. Maybe six? There's just me, four cats and two miniature dachshunds, how many eggs could we eat, anyway??? But I do plan on sharing with my land-lady who is allowing me to build a coop and keep chickens!

(3) What breeds do you have?
None. I want layers who are docile and don't mind confinement, BUT I hope to let them free range in my rather large backyard. I'm thinking: RIR, Plymouth Barred, Ameraucana, Red Star..... and maybe an EE??

(4) How did you find out about BackYardChickens.com?
Searching for coop designs. Now I am addicted to the entire BYC site, especially the forum!

(5) What are some of your other hobbies?
I collect dragons (the fantasy kind, not iquanas or living reptiles), read Science Fiction, spoil my cats and my dogs, eat too much, watch too much TV, and love my job. I recently started gardening and I've built two goldfish ponds next to each other in the back yard (yes, of the house I rent). I have a wonderful land-lady. She keeps a few sheep, which are no longer allowed in MY back yard, because of my raised vegetable gardens, the plants around the ponds, and the aquatic plants IN the ponds. Plus, my doxies try to herd them.

(6) Tell us about your family, your other pets, your occupation, or anything else you'd like to share.
Well, I'm 56 and I built my ponds, raised garden beds, and now my coop/tractor ALL BY MYSELF. I live alone with my companion animals. I do have an older sister who lives about 100 miles away, but we only see each other about once a year. We talk on the phone and e-mail each other at least once a week. I work for the State of California for a major law enforcement agency as a Telecommunications Systems Analyst; I was a 9-1-1 dispatcher and supervisor for 27 years until I promoted and relocated to Sacramento in my current position a little over two years ago. Suddenly, I have regular week-day hours and have started this backyard gardening, ponding and now this CHICKEN thing. I'm so surprised to be flourishing at this age, after so many years of high stress and sedentary work.

Now I have to come up with a great tag-line, signature and avatar. [grin]
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Welcome! I love tractors! I have......5 or 6 of them!I think you had great choices in birds, but one of my favorites would be a gold cuckoo maran...then you can get chocolate colored eggs too!!
from WI. Tough decision.....deciding on what to get....sometimes you end up with the unexpected...
But you will have sooo much fun with the chickens!!! And who cares what others think.....

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