Hello all. I just joined the forum yesterday. I've wanted backyard chickens for years and finally made it happen this year. I'm doing this as a cooperative project with 2 of my neighbors, which has its advantages and disadvantages. We have 5 hens: 2 white leghorns, 1 black sex link, 1 Easter egger (sold as Ameraucana, but I know better now), and 1 welsummer. These are not the breeds I would have chosen, but we let my neighbors' children pick them out, and I have no complaints about any of them. Four of them are 21 weeks old today; the black sex link is about 10 days older. As of yesterday, 3 are laying (the 2 leghorns and the BSL). My neighbors have started calling me the "egg whisperer" because I've predicted each of the first eggs accurately. I spend a lot of time with the girls because I work from home, so I think I'm learning to speak chicken. Thanks so much to everyone here for sharing so much information. I've already learned a ton!