Learning about chickens, building a coop

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by josephmdeleon, Dec 26, 2011.

  1. josephmdeleon

    josephmdeleon Hatching

    Dec 26, 2011
    I'm from San Antonio and lived on the East and West coasts before buying a house in Northeast Austin. I have a 20-by-10 foot vegetable garden in its second year, compost piles and would like to learn to keep chickens. I have three cats and a pit bull named Kimbo.

    I've never kept chickens, but have fond memories of helping my grandmother with her flock of Plymoth Rock barred chickens. I've been getting my hands dirty helping other people with their flocks. Not only has this given me some experience, but more importantly, it went a long way toward determining that I'm able to add chickens to my routine.

    My main interest is eggs, but I would also like to learn to butcher a chicken. I mostly eat vegetarian meals, but have eaten meat three times this year: wild pig, bison and there was some turkey parts in the stuffing at Thanksgiving. I'll continue to eat some sustainable meat and want to have the knowledge to humanely and safely butcher my birds should I want or need to.

    I plan to start with four or five chickens in a kind of coop/chicken run combo. I've been building the coop out of materials I've salvaged from trash bins and free Craigslist postings. I believe the capacity would be about eight chickens.

    I'm considering Plymoth Rock barred chickens because they are dual purpose chickens and the breed reminds me of my grandmother. I remember playing with my grandmother's chickens as a child, noticing how some were shy and others bold. Some pecked while others flew up and sat in my arms.

    My grandmother didn't exactly name her chickens, but would rather describe them as "la fea," or "la brava." Keeping chickens will provide me with a slightly more sustainable way of life, help improve my garden and entertain me. There is also a strong element of nostalgia and I hope to recapture some of the knowledge my mother nor I failed to pick up from my Abuelita Luz. For that reason, all of my chickens will have Spanish names in her honor.

  2. ghillie

    ghillie Hen Pecked

    Nov 13, 2008
    Colorado Springs, Co
  3. CheerioLounge

    CheerioLounge Songster

    Apr 10, 2011
    California High Desert
    [​IMG] from Twentynine Palms in the California high desert!
  4. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Welcome. As a gardener I first got chickens after years away from them for the manure and the huge compost pile they provide. Oh and they lay eggs and taste good too.
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    [​IMG] Welcome to the forum! [​IMG] Glad you joined us! [​IMG]

    You might look at the threads in this link. I think you could find something useful there, especially about butchering chickens. I do think Barred Rock is a good choice for you to start with.


    Good luck and again, [​IMG] to the adventure.
  6. [​IMG] [​IMG] from Washington State glad you joined us!
    My grandmother also had Barred Rocks, so those were the first chickens I purchased and now I have a lot of chickens, some how you just keep getting more and more!!!!!!
  7. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Crowing

    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan

  8. Judy

    Judy Crowing Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
  9. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Crowing Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009
  10. weimarmama

    weimarmama Crowing

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us.

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