I had another great idea the other day; raise chickens! In this rapidly changing recessionary world, I cast my mind back to stories of the depression. Farmers fared better than urban dwellers. In a pinch they could eat from their land (if their dirt didn't turn to dust).
As I googled in to my subject, however, I found I was just one of many following a trendy trend. Why has urban chicken farming taken off? The recession likely has a lot to do with it. Also, there's the local eating trend inspired by the desire to know more about what we eat. There's a reation these days to the highly networked, industrialized, and interdependent society that we live in. You can't get better control on the food you eat than if you raise it yourself.
Hey there! So good to see you jgnat! I've missed you!
If you decide to chicken farm, be careful not to get an African goose!!!!
With our 8 chickens, we added a pair of geese and ducks to round out the pen.
What we didn't know, is that the Goose was a psycho-pathic foul killer of the worst kind.
While we were away on vacation, he broke the necks of his mate, the ducks, and all but 1 of the chickens. Only to kill her in front of our eyes.
my friend grows her own, the eggs take 6.5 minutes to soft boil which is double the average standard supermarket egg, i buy them off her at £1 a doz which helps towards their food saves me the hassle and expense of keeping my own, and she sells the excess from a little stand outside her house.
when you fry them the egg white stands high, good sign of fresh, but if you want to peel them its harder because they are so much fresher than shop bought.
they do taste better.
if youre lucky you get double yokers. its nice to wander down her garden and see them all feathered and healthy in a decent run with lots of space.
I once had some Guinea hens, they make a warning call if strangers come around.
Very effective !
We had some free range chickens when our son was going to elementary school. He had a project at school where the students had to design a method to drop an egg from the second story window to the ground without breaking. Some tried parachutes, gliders etc. and did not succeed. I told my son to make a box out of styrofoam with a niche for an egg inside. I knew that our free range eggs had a very tough shell, very hard to crack open. He won the contest, the egg didn't break.
As far as eating our eggs they had a dark orange yoke and thick whites. They tasted far better than watery battery poduced eggs under artifical continuous lighting and feeding.
I have read a number of articles about "backyard" chickens growing in popularity. If you want to do this, check your local by-laws. Some may need changing. Hens are quieter than dogs, are good insect eaters, and weed eaters. Here are a couple of sites:
I have a backyard flock of seven hens. My fridge is full of eggs, really great-tasting eggs.
We used to have the South American cross breed that lays blue/green eggs. I think they call it the Americana breed. My kids loved having a chicken coop and raising baby chicks- well, the mother hen raised them for us.