New member from UK saying Hello

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Gillykat, Mar 14, 2018.

  1. Gillykat

    Gillykat Chirping

    Mar 14, 2018
    Alnwick, UK
    Hi everyone :frow I'm Gill and live in Alnwick which is in the fabulously rural county of Northumberland in England (the top right-hand corner bit next to Scotland!). :) Married to Neil since 2001 and, ever since I was a wee bairn, I've always had animals around me. I often say to folks it's easier to say what I haven't had (pony, chickens & tropical fish) than what I have! ;) Neil made the 'mistake' a few weeks ago of saying that perhaps we should get a few chickens (Ha! My subtle hints of the past few months have worked! :yesss: ) as it's my 50th soon and that IS a pretty big birthday and worthy of a pretty decent pressie, ain't it? And since then I've been reading anything and everything I can lay my hands on about chicken husbandry and building coops and runs! Our allotment garden is 90ft x 35ft and I'm currently in the process of pulling down a 30ft polytunnel which was rotten and beginning to keel over and also making a garden where I can relax, read, write and paint......and what better than a few feathered ladies to keep me company too :love

    I've been browsing the t'internet for ideas, advice but what I really wanted was a forum that was up to date (so many seemed to have barely a dozen replies to threads a year!!!) where I could chat to other feathered fanatics and learn from their experiences. Years ago, when we fostered old cats, I was a member of a cat rescue community and it was lovely to have somewhere to go to chat to others who didn't think I was 'odd' or a Crazy Cat Lady :lol: *which I was!!!* It would also give poor Neil a break from the relentless onslaught of me asking him whether we should go for this type of coop or that one....what size run....or telling him other facts I'd learnt about chicken husbandry):lau This forum looked SO friendly that, after a couple of days browsing, I plucked up the courage to sign up I am!

    To answer some of the questions in the Intro Advice post.....yes, I'm completely new to chickens (but soaking it all in like a sponge and loving every single minute of it!).....I haven't got my Girls yet. As to! :idunno Neil originally said Silkies and they are kinda cute.....but so are SO MANY others!!!!!!! Do I go for bantams or 'normal' sized birds? They are going to be pets first and foremost with any eggs as a nice benefit so perhaps I don't really want a breed or hybrid which will give me 300+ eggs per year (I'll be giving them away to customers in our shop at that rate as, much as I love eggs, I cannot eat a dozen or more a week!) Decisions, decisions.....but in a nice way :D The only negative I've found is mites!!! But I'm sure they won't be a problem as long as I keep an eye out for them and take all available precautions in coop hygiene and maintenance.

    For the moment I am thinking either 3-4 of whatever size/breed/variety I go for and I'm planning a huge run (around about 14ft x 8ft x 6ft high) for them for the odd time I have to go to work and am not in the garden to supervise their free ranging. Tonight I've been pricing up 1/2'' welded mesh to use for my run and plan to treat myself to some with my birthday money ;) *that should raise a few eyebrows when folk ask what Neil bought me for my 50th...expecting a nice piece of jewellery etc - not weld mesh!*

    Other hobbies/interests include gardening, writing to penpals (got a few in USA, Australia, Canada and UK), painting & sketching and birdwatching. I also work around 25hrs per week in a small convenience store & post office. No other pets at the moment as our last two foster cats, Olivia & Dexter, went off to their new Forever Home two weeks's the first time since 2009 we haven't had any animals at home!!! to browse the rest of the forum and meet you all......:hugs

  2. GldnValleyHens

    GldnValleyHens Crowing

    Apr 21, 2017
  3. Joeschooks

    Joeschooks Just clucking around

    Feb 7, 2018
    Hampshire, UK
    My Coop
    :frowHello from Hampshire and a very warm welcome to BYC! There’s so many helpful, knowledgeable folks here and I’m sure you’ll find this site a very useful resource. I hope you enjoy it as much as we all do.
  4. Plip

    Plip Free Ranging

    Apr 28, 2010
    NW Washington State
    Welcome to BYC! Great to have you here!
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years.

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Love your intro. Well I can tell you honestly that a lot of chicken folks would be very jealous to hear you got welded wire for your birthday. Jewelry is so commonplace. I know I don't have any.

    Cochins(Pekins in UK) are a good, solid breed to have. They aren't high production layers
    but they make very good broodies, who want to hatch eggs and raise the chicks if you also have a rooster. If not you can slip "fertile eggs" of any breed under them when they are feeling broody.
  6. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    Hi Gill and welcome from a bit further south. I'm in County Durham, so pretty much next door neighbours considering the international scale of this forum.
    Lovely to read such a comprehensive intro and learn so much about you. I just got a new broom for my last birthday, so I can appreciate you wanting wire mesh..... actually it was a second hand one because he forgot to get me a new one! Men!! :rolleyes: Still I would much rather have that than a piece of jewellery.

    I have a very mixed flock with lots of farmyard mutts but also some pure breeds. If you have not yet discovered the joy of multi-coloured eggs as well as multi-coloured chickens, you might want to consider that before you make your final decision about breeds.

    As @drumstick diva suggested bantam pekins are lovely. I have some lavender ones which are pretty and as a breed they make great broody mothers.... nothing beats watching a broody hen raise chicks. Obviously their eggs are just small though, so it depends on what your priorities are.

    Limiting yourself to just 3 or 4 will be difficult.... there is something called "Chicken Maths" which is a certifiable illness afflicting poultry people. "How many chickens do you have now?" is a common question relatives and friends ask me..... I don't really know the answer, nor am I inclined to count them, but I started off with a trio of exchequer leghorns just over 5 years ago and it is A LOT more than 3 now that is for sure!

    Anyway, just wanted to say "hello" especially since you are almost local.... will be coming up to Alnwick to do the Percy Fun Ride on 1st April.... beautiful part of the world!

    Best wishes

    Last edited: Mar 15, 2018
  7. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams

    G’Day from down under Gill :frow Welcome!

    Awesome intro! Thank you for sharing! I can see you fitting right in and your 'Like' count ticking upwards rapidly :D

    A couple of articles you might like to include in your sponge sessions:
    Pickin a Chicken
    How Much Room Do Chickens Need

    I do hope you enjoy being a BYC member. There are lots of friendly and very helpful folks here so not only is it overflowing with useful information it is also a great place to make friends and have some fun.

    Including your general location on your profile will assist others. Location, climate, season etc can be important factors when members are responding to any questions you may have and vice versa.

    BYC has a Learning Centre and also Topic of the Week discussions which I have found to be a great resource, informative and sometimes entertaining; so definitely worth checking out. This one may be of particular interest:
    Topic of the Week - Getting Started, Keeping Chickens

    If you would like to share Pictures and Stories of your flock, you have come to the right place. BYC’ers never tire of these and do not back away slowly or commence eye rolling when the photo album or home videos come out ;)
  8. 007Sean

    007Sean Pheasant Whisperer

    Oct 25, 2015
    South Central Texas
    Howdy:welcome:frow Happy:ya to have you join the family. Enjoy your time here at BYC! :)
    Great intro!:thumbsup Best wishes in your endeavors!:jumpy
    MrsMistyReal and Smuvers Farm like this.
  9. Gillykat

    Gillykat Chirping

    Mar 14, 2018
    Alnwick, UK
    Oooh how lovely - I take it it's in Hulne Park? I often go walking & birdwatching in there and it's just soooo peaceful......and my allotment is right next to the entrance too :) I grew up on Tyneside and we only moved to rural Northumberland in October 2004 but now we couldn't move back to urban life - too noisy, too many people :oops: I've always been an outdoor person so living here is great.
    MrsMistyReal and 007Sean like this.
  10. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    Yes, it's in Hulne Park. Maybe you could come along and watch some of it and get a horsey "fix". I've lived rural pretty much all my life and like you, could not bear to live in town. Too many people in too little space. Thankfully we are not all alike though, otherwise there wouldn't be enough countryside for everyone!
    Have you started sowing seeds yet for your allotment? What do you grow? I just bought my seed tatties yesterday... Arran Pilot and Nadine and onion sets. Thinking about sowing some tomato seeds and peas.
    MrsMistyReal, 007Sean and Gillykat like this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: