I started keeping chickens 4 years ago, almost exactly around this time. The first video I took of the baby chicks, that I could find, was from May 12, 2016. I still have 3 of those 4 chicks: Mildred, Charlotte, and Hortensia. Keeping chickens has really added so much to my life, not only do I get eggs, I have some very funny and personable little dinosaurs running around my yard!
So, now that my birds are getting older and will eventually stop laying their eggs, I wanted to add some new younger birds to my flock. What’s interesting to me, is that so many people who keep chickens really do consider getting rid of them, once they no longer lay. While I understand the reality of people needing to run a business, I personally would never get rid of a chicken just because she wasn’t laying. No, my birds will live long full lives and will influence the new younger chickens with their knowledge and friendship.
I ordered, a mix of black copper maran chicks, and an assortment of different green and blue egg layers. The blue and green egg layers are being shipped as day old chicks. I really wanted to build them a nice box for the beginning of their life with me. The first time around I used a small cage, which worked but it wasn’t very warm and inviting. I knew I wanted something with chicken wire, and also I knew that I wanted it to be green. So after a little bit of thinking I got to it, and created the box of my dreams.
I’ve already stocked up on the essentials – the starter feed, the chick grit, and still have my sweeter heater from the first time around. I really like the sweeter heater, it’s in infrared type of heat that doesn’t get any very hot. There is almost no way it could start a fire, which is a big worry with some of the more traditional heat lamps. There is a big variation is price, but I felt like it was worth it.
There is nothing better than coming home and having all of the chickens run up to greet me. They know who I am, and even though they probably just want food, I feels like they love me and genuinely are excited for my presence in their lives. Since the addition of Myrtle and Basil, the pigs, to my little menagerie – who act as security and keep the chickens safe, we have had no problems with chickens being picked off by predatory animals.
If chicken keeping is something you have wanted to try, look into it. There are some basic things you need to make sure to do before investing in chickens. First and most important make sure that keeping chickens is allowed in your area. If it isn’t don’t try and break the rules, you will probably get caught and your chickens will be taken from you and who knows what would happen to them then.
Second is the cost, which is real. Chicken coop, food, hay, treats, egg cartons, the feeder and waterer. All sorts of different things to think about. And third you should really think about what kind of veterinary services you have available nearby. It’s not often (only happened to me once) but you will want to know if there is some place nearby that will see birds. Ok – so you still want to keep chickens, GREAT! And let me tell you, it is so rewarding.
When those little chicks come and you see them grow up into little teenage birds, and then their first eggs. Just such a great experience.
I will keep you updated on the arrival of the chicks!