Thursday, May 6, 2010

Chicken Feed

I am SO excited!  I just read my very first bit of information on the care of chickens--chicks, to be exact!

Now, this may not seem like very exciting news to anyone else, but to me it's the first step towards having a real farm!  You see, Don and I have been talking about the possibility of having actual livestock on our eventual farm, going back and forth on different animals, dreaming and planning, etc.   This all with me knowing next to nothing about any of it.  Don, at least, was raised out in the country around various animals. (The most notable of which, apparently, were the %^&* cows, but that's another story, or stories, altogether.)

At any rate, one of the things we've definitely settled on is that we're going to have chickens.  (Do they actually COUNT as livestock?)  And, of course, I know nothing about them.  Not entirely true, I suppose--I was actually surprised to learn/realize recently that here in Ontario you have to keep your chickens warm!  I'm a South Texas girl originally, so this was downright shocking, after I got over the laughter.  :)  Still, I didn't know anything about the most basic of chicken care, until I stumbled upon a pdf about it in someone's blog.  I won't post the link 'cause I can't find a way to contact the author (or follow the blog, or anything else) other than posting a reply to the post, which I've done.  (Why can't EVERYONE use Blogger?)

Anyway, it was cutesy and REALLY basic, and I have no idea if any of the information was correct, as I haven't researched it or anything.  I certainly wouldn't rush out and buy chicks on its info alone, but it was still exciting!


Myst Panther said...

Sorry for the strange name, but its my secondlife handle. But its Marie.

Chickens eh? Spent a lot of time with chicks and chickens when I was a kid, from raising the chicks to slaughter. I have actually seen first hand where the expression "flopping around like a chicken with its head chopped off" came from. Its funny, you mention the heat, for me chickens and heat lamps go hand in hand. And the smell. The unique smell that is all chicken. But farm fresh eggs are the best. And yes, they count as livestock.. at least by our bylaws. I don't know about yours.

Its actually not really that hard to raise them. We raised them in elementary school. Instead of a class guinea pig we had chicks. I remember them in the box with the heat lamp, and then letting them grow up and taking them to a farm. You have to have a proper enclosure, and well.. chickens don't always have the best attitude. Honestly they can be nasty creatures from time to time. Dumb too. You also have to watch for things like rats and coyotes when you have them outside. Like I said, they smell, and their coop has to be pretty secure. I know there is specific information around getting them to lay and the configuration of their coops. But I can imagine keeping a coop warm in the ontario winter would be a challenge. Might have to have them in a heated barn or something.

I hope if you guys decide to actually have a serious go at a farm you come back to the west. The fraser valley has some of the best farmland in all of canada. *WINK WINK NUDGE NUDGE* Seriously, we miss you guys, soooo much.

I actually just recently did an ad for the local university which offered a free class on urban poultry farming. Apparently there is some city initiative for backyard farming right now. The fraser valley has been a haven for chicken farming and farming in general for a long time. There are many millionaire farmers out this way. (seriously. I was floored when I found out.)

If a blog isn't using blogger, they are probably using wordpress. In which case there is probably an RSS feed to subscribe to the blog. You can use Google Reader to follow those sorts of blogs. Both my comics are run off wordpress and use RSS feeds for subscription purposes, same as most non blogger blogs.

Anyway, cheers! I'm reading your blog. :)

Terri said...

Chickens are definitely livestock. Well, at least they're not plants! They're up there on my list of things to get/do around here too. Can't have a farm without chickens.