I live in Texas, in a suburb of Houston. We have about an acre…that I call an urban mini-farm. As I began my walk in cancer recovery, (my health journey), we had to change many things. Some of these were more difficult than others and some were really fun and enjoyable. This is about the latter.
First we got some chickens and fixed a hen house for the ‘girls’. Danny is the expert in this area. We’ve tried different breeds, different numbers in the flock and both with and without a rooster. All of these choices are simply that, choices. What might be right for us, might not fit your situation and your family. There really aren’t any mistakes, just choices. If one choice doesn’t work well, do things differently, until you hit upon the right combination. We’ve chosen to go with gentle breeds, Buff Orpingtons and Rhode Island Reds and right now we have a rooster. He has attempted to show me he is boss, once. I’m hopeful he won’t make that mistake again. Danny was ready to have chicken and dumplings, but I convinced him to give Peppy another chance!
The ‘girls’ have a slow-down in laying during the coldest part of winter and in the hottest part of summer. Spring has sprung and they are busy cackling and laying. A couple were ready to ‘sit’. We selected the larger lighter eggs to set as we have decided we like the Buffs better than the Rhode Island Reds. I’ve learned that the pointer the eggs, the more likely they will be little roosters, so round it will be! We gathered the eggs and rotated them two times a day until we had a hen ready to sit. As the hens start to go through a heat, we decide which ones to give the eggs to. We want the others to keep laying. We have a separate area in the chicken coop for the hens to sit on their eggs. In this area, once the chicks begin to hatch, the hens can teach them to scratch and drink without the other hens bothering them. After setting the eggs, we will have baby chicks in about 21 days.
Check back for updates on the Hen House.
From the heart! ~Kathy Burden