Hi everyone, I have been poking around on this site and decided to join after I deleted Facebook and realized I lost access to some great chicken advice! This site seems so informative and fun. A few things about us: Growing up in Alaska in the early 80s, I didn't know anyone who had chickens. Farms at that point were very separate from city areas. Now when I visit I am amazed by all the backyard coops. We live in Washington State on about 1 acre, and are surrounded by farmers and backyard breeders. So it was only natural to add some poultry! Our family has had chickens for almost 2 years. We had 4 Black Australorp raised from pullets and adopted 2 adult Red SexLink (I think) hens. Unfortunately 1 Aussie met her demise by trying to cross the road...and 1 of the adopted SexLinks passed away quietly one night. We just added 11 chicks to our flock: 2 Easter Eggers, 1 Blue Polish, 3 Buff Orps, 3 Black Orps, and 2 Silkies. We also have a border-springer mix who would snuggle the chicks to death if he could, and 2 outdoor cats who are licking their chops... We have 2 daughters who are beyond excited about the new chicks. They saved up to help buy the Australorps, but we discovered our newbie mistake in getting pullets instead of chicks; they never bonded with us and did not become the "farm pets" that our girls' friends have. Although the Australorps are good layers and are pretty friendly, they are also more independent than we expected, and HATE being in the spacious chicken run; they squawk loudly if they are "forced" to be in there for more than an hour each morning instead of free ranging. Sweetie, our remaining SexLink, follows us around and even hangs out by our back door, trying to pop inside if we aren't careful. I think she'll be a friendly one to the chicks once they are introduced. I deleted the question portion of this post so as to put it in the proper questions thread. Cheers!