The chickens. Also known as the feather children. They help to deal with the weeds, the girls give us eggs, when they’re not being tricksy, and they are fascinating to watch. They are all pretty friendly and curious and love treats, when they’re allowed them. My chicken journey has had many ups and downs but I am definitely in the crazy chicken lady zone. I especially like raising feather babies.

The flock of chickens is a fluctuating thing, as we hatch, grow, sell and dispatch various chickens. This page is an attempt keep their profiles reasonably up to date. So, who do we have at the moment?

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Frodo. Australorp. 3 1/2 years old. The matriarch, sole survivor of our original 3 hens, most valued flock member. Main plotlines: serial broodiness, excellent mama to many chicks.
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Juliette. Australorp. 10 months old. My other Christmas present ‘French hen’. Main plotlines: Independent girl, turning out nicely.
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Betty. Australorp. 10 months old. Lightest blue, very easy-going and calm. Main plotlines: First to hang out with the older hens, being easy to handle.
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Annie. Australorp. 10 months old. Sole, much-loved hatchling of the posted eggs disaster. Main plotlines: Orphan Annie, the spraddle-legged chick who I saved, her first egg was a giant egg.
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Rory. Australorp-Wyandotte cross. 10 months old. Smallest girl and my snuggle chicken. Main plotlines: Loitering around my feet, waiting for attention, being picked up by The Little Fulla.
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Paris. Australorp-Wyandotte cross. 10 months old. The demanding, independent and smart one. Main plotlines: Being the boss, loitering around for food.
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Darrington. Australorp. 4 1/2 months old. The young roo, son of the late Mr Darcy. Main plotlines: A handsome boy trying to become the flock leader. Needs more handling to settle down.
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Blaze & Pickle. Australorp. 4 1/2 months old. The young girls, daughters of the late Mr Darcy. Main plotlines: Blaze is friendly and curious, Pickle is shy but nice.

 

My Top 5 Quick Tips For Keeping Chickens

1. Knowledge

  • Join a good Facebook poultry group or two.
  • The Chicken Chick – browse, learn, use!

2. Handling

  • At least once a month.
  • Night time – easier to grab, calmer.

3. Observation

  • Appearance – healthy comb and feathers? Lethargic? Droopy?
  • Behaviour in relation to flock – hiding away? Aggression? Broodiness?
  • Poop analysis – learn what is ok and what requires investigation.

4. Treatment

If a chicken is sick you basically have three options:

  • Treat yourself and get someone to help if you can.
  • Take to a vet.
  • Cull.

5. Responsibility

  • Health – if a chicken seems sick or ‘off’, deal with it ASAP. ‘Wait and see’ does not work, waiting = a chicken in pain.
  • Roosters – if you hatch chicks, have a plan for dealing with roosters. Dumping a highly domesticated animal is not an option.
  • Sharing – pass on your chicken addiction to others!

 

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