I am probably deliciously naive in my thinking at this stage It’s the taking responsibility for it that’s firing me. I have just finished reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver which has been a real challenge for me to review my life style choices. Although I do have an allotment and buy my free range eggs from "Ron the Chicken Man" down the allotment road from me - I have always hankered to have chickens of my own. My Dad had them when I was a child - for eggs and table - mostly bantams and some silkies.
I have done some homework and have found a supplier close by who supplies live chicks and poulets @ £8 each (two weeks old). I would therefore not have to have the poor things posted to me. I shudder to think of the state they would arrive in even knowing that they can survive for three days without food.
I would like to have some heirloom breeds (to keep the breeds alive) - and this is where I would like some input from you all. I have chosen the breeds that I think I will be interested in are but any input of experiences would be appreciated:
Chickens for Eggs :
Sussex / New Hampshire Red / Cochin / Orpington / Scots Grey and Boven Marans (x breed which I believe lay well in the winter months - from the same supplier).
Orpington, Scots Grey, Plymouth Rock
I also like the Faverolles (which originate from France) and are also a good dual bird e.g. table and eggs. I am looking at dual as when the chickens start slowing down on the laying I would possibly look at harvesting them for the table. Sorry if I offend anyone in this thinking but I am trying to be practical. However, the jury is out on that one and I do not know if I would have the guts to actually kill them.
Turkey for Christmas :
The only kind he provides is Norfolk Bronze Turkey - anyone got any other breeds that are heirloom that they have tried and found better? I have already checked with my council and they say I could easily have chickens at home. The one problem I might have is a rooster. I want to get three females and a rooster so that I can start making my own little chickens. I am not sure if I will get large or bantam - can any one advise me on the size of the eggs which is the better option - as I do want the eggs mainly.
My allotment does allows us to keep chickens - but I only have 5 rods with three fruit trees so not much space there. Oh, decisions, decisions!! I am so tempted to jump in with both feet but just know that it is a big responsibility. Ideally I would like to attend a course but the only one I can find around these parts is Hugh Fernley W and he's expensive and a bit far away! Anyone know of something closer to Dorset/Hampshire that run decent courses?
I have seen a wonderful chicken house - see the picture above - (http://www.allotments4all.co.uk/smf/index.php/topic,43759.0.html) or see post at Allotments 4 All posted by IsleworthTW7 - returning to poultry) that I think is the kind that I would be prepared to put my chickens in. I wonder if I would be able to put chickens and a turkey in the same coop?
One guess what's on the top of my Christmas list to Santa this year!! Poor Santa - he almost definitely will not fit down the chimney this year.
Wee bit of vintage glam for a Sunday
2 years ago