New Chicken Owner in Savannah


5 Years
Sep 18, 2014
Savannah, Georgia
Hello, all. My name is Donnie, but most people call me by my stage name of Lord J. I am a horror rap and EDM(dubstep/glitch/techno) artist, and I am also the bassist for the death metal band, Solomon's Temple.

I recently became the owner of a Rhode Island Red hen, and I had been strictly performing Google searches for info that I needed on caring for this bird. Nearly every thing that I looked up had found a post from this site, so I felt that I really needed to join, in case I had any other questions, or even some advice in the future. Let me tell you a bit about how I came to own this bird.

One Friday evening, my mother and I were in the back yard, and she was doing her Hip Hop Abs workout in front of the TV that we have out there. She got my attention and with a huge smile, she nodded her head towards a gate in our back yard, the gate that leads to her fiance's back yard(he lives next door to us). I thought that maybe he was back there doing something very goofy, like he always does. However, when I stood up and looked, lo and behold, there's a chicken in our back yard. I was shocked, because our yard, as well as my mom's fiance's, are completely fenced in. The only way she could have gotten in the yard is she would have had to climb a couple of logs in the back neighbor's yard and hopped over the fence. I didn't care. I got some rice and lettuce for her, until I could get to a feed store. I figured, even if I was just gonna babysit her for a few days, I might as well actually give her what she needs. We never received a reply to our Craigslist ads and telephone flyers about "Found Chicken", so we are now the proud owners of this beautiful bird(it's been well over 30 days that we've been caring for her).

The chicken's tail feathers were pretty badly damaged when she showed up in our yard, to the point where you could see bare skin on her tail. When I saw this, I immediately thought the worst, that she was used as a bait chicken for training a fighting cock. Fortunately, though, I have watched enough shows on Animal Planet to know that bait birds, as well as the fighting cocks, will all have their beaks filed down to minimize killing. I looked at her beak, and sure enough, it was untouched, which gave me assurance that she probably wasn't abused. She was very skiddish, though, which leads me to believe that she may not have been an actual pet, but rather just a source of eggs. But now, she is very calm around my mom and I, even to the point of allowing me to pick her up and carry her around, and she doesn't "freak out" like she used to. I do want to ask something now. Only one of her wings appears to have been clipped(all of the feathers around the edge were cut, with some quill remaining). The other wing is untouched. Will those feathers eventually shed and regrow? I'm just curious.

During the day, she has had free roam of our entire yard(about 6000 sq. ft.) since we have had her, and we are planning on getting 2-3 more RIRs, just so that she can have the social life that all forms of avians need to be happy. It's just a matter of us finding some that we can get. We are also still working on building a nice coop. We just have a 5.5 foot high poultry netting pen set up that she is put in during the night, and there is tarp covering the top of it to protect her from the weather. We put a table with a ramp under the tarp, with a milk basket on it for her to make a nest and lay in(we have given her a big basket of pine straw to make the nest with), and she has actually made a nice nest in there. Tonight, she kept trying to find a way out of the pen, even trying to fly out, so I let her roam a bit longer tonight. She ended up jumping up on another table, close to where I was sitting outside. She laid down, and went to sleep. I left her to rest for a while, and just an hour or two ago, I picked her up and put her in the pen. I have a feeling that she is becoming fond of me.

Well, now that you have read my little book about Ruby(that's what I call her, lol), you know the whole story behind how I got her. I've never had birds before, but my mom has had ducks in the past, so she has a bit of experience. I do know that since finding this site when I was looking up plants that are toxic to chickens, I have found so much other stuff that I was looking for, so I am happy to consider BYC to be an Avian Encyclopedia :D

If there's anything else that you want to know about me, instead of Ruby, feel free to ask. I am an open book.

Welcome to BYC, Donnie. Glad you decided to join our flock. You have a very unusual and interesting occupation. Looking at your pics, Ruby is actually a Production Red as opposed to a true Rhode Island Red. Believe it or not Production Red hens can actually fly; not great, but good enough to get over most yard fences; even with a clipped wing if the feathers have grown back enough (they do grow back). She may have even flown over your fence escaping from a dog, and may have lost her tail feathers to its jaws in the process. It's good you're getting some more hens to go with Ruby as chickens are gregarious and like company, but you need to introduce the new hens to her slowly and carefully. There is a good article on introducing new chickens to an existing flock (in this case, Ruby) at Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. Good luck with Ruby.
Lord J pleased to meet you. I really enjoyed your introduction. I knew Ruby wasn't a Rhode Island Red because she has white on her. I think she is very fond of you and also lonely without other hens to trash talk with. You've been doing your research so I am sure you will give her an excellent home

She will need much more secure quarters, so she doesn't fall victim to predators. Please check out the coops section and also the predator threads. The Learning Center will also give you a quick run down of basic information to get you started. Welcome to Backyard Chickens - glad you joined our flock.
Glad you joined us!
Hello there and welcome to BYC!

Good luck with your Ruby. She sure is a cutie pie!!

So glad you could join our community and welcome to our flock!
Thanks for the warm welcomes, everyone. You all sure know how to make someone feel right at home, lol. It's a pleasure for me to be here, and to have met all of you.

*Edit* I forgot to add that Ruby says hello, as well. Only, she said it more like "buck-uck", lol
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Welcome to BYC!

You will find a lot of good information here. Keep on asking questions and you will get many good answers.

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