Chickens

We started out with 3 chickens, Huck, Flow, and Crash.  I thought 3 would be plenty to serve our needs, a couple of eggs per day. The chickens were the beginning of everything.

Two weeks after the chickens arrived, Flo left. I don’t think she wanted to go, but her habit of standing in the middle of the field and spinning in circles was true testament to her bird brain. Apparently an eagle found that amusing.

A few months later, Crash started laying monster eggs. Each time I placed the egg on the scale and found that several nearly reached world record weight. After 10 or so of these super ova, we came home to find Crash dead as a doornail in her coop. I suspect laying monster eggs is not a healthy habit.

I bought 5 more chicks to keep Huck company. 5 roosters, as luck would have it. I was beginning to get discouraged that maybe farming wasn’t my bag – I certainly wasn’t having luck with chickens.

Not long after the roosters, Huck went broody. I watched her sit on the golf balls in her nest for a week and then decided I’d better get her some hatching eggs or she might never leave the coop again. I bought 6 Australorp eggs, and 21 days later Huck welcomed 6 fluffy chicks into the world. It was easily one of the coolest things I’ve ever experienced. The fact that they ALL hatched and they ALL survived renewed my faith in my farming abilities.

Somehow I now have upwards of 35 chickens – the flock consists of White Rocks, black and blue Australorps, and a silver-laced Wyandotte cross rooster named Supafly. He’s the boss.We also have meat birds who come and go to free-range on our farm before heading off to Freezer Camp.

I’m collecting over 20 eggs a day and I’ve accepted the fact that when you free range poultry, you can never really be sure how many birds you have. Despite a few losses to coyotes, foxes and the like, the chickens have been a success.

We are currently liberating our spare eggs at the very cheap price of $4 per dozen. They are antibiotic-free and free range. Size, shape and colour are mixed in every dozen – we believe in diversity.

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Cocks

This thing right here. This is a cock. Cocks are great if you limit yourself to one. But the more cocks you add, the more problems you’re gonna have… it’s a fact. Keeping one cock makes for pleasant morning wake ups. You’ll never sleep in with a cock nearby. One cock ensures a boisterous wake
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Sid…and Nancy

Chickens come and go at Tipsy Toad Grove. Usually when they go it’s under the influence of something larger – a coyote, a fox or a trip to freezer camp. When they come, it’s a result of a trip to make a purchase or 21 days of finger tapping while the incubator hums away in
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Timmy Moves On

My first visit to a poultry fanciers event. I had visions of showbirds lined up on pedestals, their feathers dyed pink and green and blue, and price tags dangling from their feet. Rhinestone encrusted roosts and chickens wearing little Elvis jumpsuits, complete with miniature toupees carpet-taped to their combs seemed like viable sideshows. I was
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