New member in Chicago!

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by pa2chitown, Nov 30, 2015.

  1. pa2chitown

    pa2chitown Chillin' With My Peeps

    130
    7
    51
    Nov 28, 2015
    Hi everyone,

    You can read my story or cut to the chase at the bottom...[​IMG]

    Growing up on a small farm in Pennsylvania, I loved raising chickens! The fascination with genetics and the color variation from different crosses, along with "turks"(featherless necks), animals with scales, feathers, combs and waddles, etc.. It's the closest thing to a pet dinosaur a kid can have. ...eventually lead to a Master's degree in Developmental genetics (embryology). I followed that with more advanced studies but gave it up... Now, I'm self-employed.
    I wanted to have a small farm of my own by this point in my life, but until recently, my only
    farm animal was a chick I hatched from a leftover egg used in a virology class (it was never inoculated). I couldn't keep it for long and gave it to another person who had several other chickens.
    About six months ago, my neighbor told me they knew a lady whose daughter had ordered 15 chickens without her permission. She was looking to give some away, so I volunteered.
    I asked for up to four hens. I was talked into taking a rooster and two hens--Dominiques.
    I had the chickens for about a month, had built a nice little coop with small run, and was letting them out in the double back yard daily.
    Then, I became very ill with a stomach virus. I didn't leave my house for about 36 hours. I figured the chickens would be okay. They weren't. Something got in and killed one of the hens. That is when I first found this site. From what I read, it was a racoon. Probably a young one. I was very sad but was also glad that it only killed one. I shored up the coop and haven't had any more problems, although something tried to dig under recently. I have wire under the run and coop...

    (sorry, my dog is demanding my attention)

    Once the rooster started mating, I knew I'd need some more hens. I found a guy on CL who was giving away 6 hens. He said they wouldn't lay many more eggs but I doubted him. I gave 4 to a friend with a small "bird sanctuary" and ten acres... The two I kept (Ameracauna or EE, and Barred Plymoth Rock) didn't lay for about a month but once they started its been 5/week. My Dominique has also been laying since Oct. 1st. She rarely misses a day ever since she started!
    Oh, btw, I put two pieces of velcro on my rooster as a "crow collar". It worked great for the first three months but recently he learned how to become more vocal. I adjusted one of the two. I think he thought they were part of him? Now he still belts out the occasional shrill crow, about 60% of normal, i'd say? However, most of his attempts are pitiful, now. I hate doing it to him, but I researched it prior to his arrival and can't have him waking up people in a five block radius.

    I made an incubator and am waiting on 3 ameracauna/dominique crosses to hatch, fingers crossed. I started with ten, but 6 were from my dominiqe hen and her eggs are still too small, they didn't make it. One of the ameracauna's didn't make it and I'm concerned about one other but it is very far along. My other hen wasn't laying at the time I started. I made a much better incubator today, and want to test it. I'm not planning on over-running my neighborhood with chickens, and no more than one rooster at a time (don't tell my current roo).
    If successful at hatching a few, I want to have replacements for the aging hens, and will give excess to my friend who I mentioned. That said, I already converted a full sized refrigerator into an incubator for future use??? ...maybe not? :) I'm thinking of buying land in Memphis? It's an 8 hr drive from Chicago and winters are not as harsh.
    Anyway, found your site and have learned more than I knew as a kid, and relearned some items!!
    (my doggie is telling me to stop and play with her...)

    To recap:
    -From Chicago
    -Grew up on very small farm in PA, and loved my pet dinosaurs ....uh hum, chickens.
    -[​IMG]Now have one Dominique rooster, one Dom hen, one Americauna? hen, One BR? hen. [​IMG]Three well developed eggs that I'm hoping will hatch any time now. They were put in the incubator as the were produced...
    -Testing a much better home made incubator and have 6 eggs ready to go, from each hen (dom's eggs still small).
    -Roo wears a couple of velcro "crow collars".


    -Don't name my chickens. I would if there was any need but I'm never telling people about them individually, and they would be better served with a description. ;)
    -Been all around the country. Notably, FL, CO, CA, PA, IL, SC (SC, CO in military).

    Thanks,
    Ron

    Pics of dog and 3 young chickens (prior to racoon). Eggs (duh). Two Doms and a BR (its tough from the pic but can you find the BR?)

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

    25,582
    2,156
    438
    May 14, 2014
    Montana
    Welcome to BYC. Glad you decided to join our flock. The BR is the barred bird with the single comb; the Dominiques are the barred birds with the rose combs. You have a very thorough introduction and a beautiful flock. Thanks for posting the pics. :eek:) If you haven't done so already, definitely check out our Learning Center at https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center. There is lots of useful information there. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. Cheers.
     
  3. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    29,623
    17,765
    666
    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Hi and welcome to BYC - great to have you onboard - enjoy!

    CT
     
  4. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

    18,045
    3,747
    471
    Aug 16, 2014
    Yorkshire, UK
    My Coop
    Hi :welcome Ron

    Glad you could join the flock! What a wonderful intro, I have really enjoyed getting to know a bit about you. Your pics are great too!! Wishing you the very best of luck with your incubation :fl I too love incubating and hatching, it's lots of fun and very rewarding.

    Enjoy BYC and all the chicken chat :frow
     
  5. N F C

    N F C dem crazy bones Premium Member

    35,721
    13,855
    676
    Dec 12, 2013
    Wyoming
    [​IMG]

    Thanks for the nice intro and pictures. It's great to have you here!
     
  6. trailrider330

    trailrider330 Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,653
    224
    216
    Aug 4, 2013
    Midwest America
    Welcome to the BYC flock! We are glad you joined us!

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  7. pa2chitown

    pa2chitown Chillin' With My Peeps

    130
    7
    51
    Nov 28, 2015
    Michael/all,

    Thanks for the welcome!
    Michael, you are correct about the barred rock having the single comb! She is in front. Now, i have another question: could she be a marans? When i first got her, her legs were very white. They gained some yellow shortly before she started laying, which i researched here and found is not unusual. The barring is a liitle mottled, and legs/feet are still more white than yellow. I dont think her eggs are dark enough to be a marans? The first egg she laid for me is in my pics from prior post (they've gotten bigger).

    Thanks again!
     
  8. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    84,499
    3,806
    646
    Jun 15, 2012
    Washington
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
     
  9. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    83,461
    11,778
    816
    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Welcome to BYC
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by