Laydees and gennelmenz… The day has finally come. There are chooks in the backyard.
This morning I went down to the Girgarre farmers market, where there was also a poultry auction. The two beautiful lavender araucanas came from a woman who kept them for me from last month, but looking through the amazing variety of birds on offer at the auction was tinder for the imagination. Turkeys, game hens, guinea fowl, many different breeds of chickens, ducks, geese and quail were on offer and will be again next month. Hopefully I can get the waterfowl coop ready before then.
Our new coop is a renovated old outhouse. Yes, the traditional country dunny has a new lease of life. It’s actually quite a large interior and will house probably a dozen or so hens as they’ll only be in there at nights. After months of reading about different breeds and in particular rare breeds, I’d decided on araucanas and barnevelders as they’re unusual and very pretty. The araucanas are the ones that lay blue and green shelled eggs. Barnevelders also have a good temperament and the most amazing “laced” feather colours so they look like dapples or scales.
At this stage I’m thinking I’ll stick with the araucanas although they don’t have the gorgeous double laced feathering, in order to keep track of the generations. At least until it’s possible to have separate runs for everyone and know who’s pregnant to whom.
The new hen laid an egg while she was in the box, before she even arrived home. It’s been left in with her just in case she feels a little broody. What fun would it be to have little chicks so soon!
I’m quite pleased to have these two and the coop finished. In the next few weeks I’ll have to suss out some more hens and pick up the rooster from Kyneton that was free to a good home. My little organic garden and “hobby” farm feels that bit more productive now and it’s a good feeling. Hopefully there’ll be some pics in a few days.