Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I want chickens.

I don't know what I'd do with them. I imagine they'd cluck about nicely in my backyard eating pesky bugs and being cute and chickeny.

I'd just like them for eggs. I mean, I'd like them for meat too - but I am the squeamishiest person ever. Couldn't slaughter them. But eggs - I could gather eggs.

I've heard they aren't anymore work than cats. I don't believe it. First of all - my low maintenance cat is pretty high maintenance. She's picky. And snooty. And poops where she pleases.

And wouldn't I need a coop? And feed? And a vet/medicine/regular sort of care? And probably a fence to keep the other animals out. And warmers in the winter, yes? I mean, really - does it equal out to cheaper than 3 dollars a dozen?

I have a lot more reading/researching before I decide if I actually want chickens. The old Italian guy across the street has chickens (and goats and cows and sheep and peacocks) maybe he'll let me visit his chickens sometimes. You know, to see if I like them as much as I think I do.

aaawwwww, chickens!


Jodi said...

Chickens really aren't much more work than cats. We had 8 - now have 7 (one got sick and my husband had to kill it/put it out of it's misery).

I posted pictures of the small portable coop my husband made last year. We keep them fenced in so they don't bother the neighbors - and so they're safe from predators. But the coop is on wheels, so we're able to move them daily so they always have a fresh patch of grass to scratch.

We've had them parked under the tree near our shed for the winter - no warmers. I bring out fresh water every morning in a tin bucket (no special equipment - we weren't intending to keep them over winter when we first got them. lol).

My daughter loves them. I think when my son is able to see them this year, he'll love them too (he was too young to know anything last summer as a newborn! ;-)).

We didn't get meat birds, though I am considering trying to talk T into a few....

gardenofsimple said...

Thanks for the tips Jodi! I keep hearing they aren't that difficult to raise, but everything I read has been overwhelming! I think I did see pictures of the coop a while back on your blog now that you mention it - I'll have to go take a closer look. :)

kiki said...

We kept chickens for five years. Mostly for the eggs, but we slaughtered the roosters - not very tender, but they make find stock. Our chickens were totally free-range, and the roosters can be really "cocky" and take over the yard and make it a scary place! They weren't much work for us and provided great manure and eggs. Just be prepared for predators and teaching the boys first-hand about "the circle of life" - lol!
Chickens are great pets - hens are WONDERFUL!

Valkyrie said...

I was going to say, you need to talk to Kiki! I seriously want urban chickens--for the eggs only. Daniel won't let me though. :-(

I have read it's best to have a coop to keep them safe. Like Kiki said, the predators will come.

Sara said...

I've had this conversation with Jon so many times. We will never get chickens. Ever. The vet bill isn't a concern, though, if I was to mark off some of your list. :D

As for your kitty, I'm so sorry she is turning into such a pistol. Any chance she has a UTI? Or had a UTI and made her dislike the litter box? I can't say too much, cause even though I have three cats, none are allowed in the house because they pissed all over the carpet and we replaced the carpet.

gardenofsimple said...

two of the books I just got (backyard homestead and country skills) have sections on chickens - backyard homestead makes it seem easy as pie country skills makes it seem like a HUGE amount of work! I did talk to a friend who said he'd be willing to do the slaughtering at the end if he got eggs in return - I think I could live with that deal!

Jodi said...

Someone willing to do the slaughtering? That sounds like a good exchange. lol

Don't let the Country Skills book scare you. It scared me but T persisted and I'm glad he did.