Saturday, April 2, 2011

There ain't nobody here but us chickens! *and a few turkeys*

What are YOU looking at anyway?

So today on our way back from the farmers market we dropped off our order for spring chicks and turkey poults at the Paris Farmers Union!  It's the first step in what I presume will be a very up and down first foray into trying to grow some of our own meat.  You see the neighbor next door, who periodically calls late at night asking to bum a sleeve of Ritz, has laying hens and sells their eggs to us for a very reasonable price, so we don't really need layers just now.  So we've got ourselves 20 broiler chicks and 12 turkeys on order.  Someone I trust told us that we should order twice as many turkeys as we'd like to end up with in the freezer, so thats what we've done.  The turkeys will come first to give them adequate time to grow big enough before Thanksgiving.  The chickens should only take about 10 weeks.

Today I bought a couple of kennels to cobble together to make a chicken tractor.  A chicken tractor?  you say... well here's an example.  Mine won't be exactly like this, but the idea is simple.  If you want to pasture chickens, but need to stop them from becoming a quick and tasty treat for your friendly fox, racoons or mongooses, you can build one of these rigs.  Basically it is a portable coop that you push all over the yard so they can have fresh yummy grass and bugs to eat each day!  You can also push it over your garden to help fertilize or get rid of pests.  They will still need some grain, but the idea is to pretty much let them be chickens, do their chicken thing, then eat them after their happy, albeit brief, chicken lives are over.  They barely have two  neurons to rub together, but we will feel better about eating them knowing they didn't live their entire lives without seeing the sun or breathing fresh air.  More updates when I get the tractor built!  It will be a month before we get the turkeys, and we'll need to get the shelter and fencing for that done as well, which will of course mean more posts!  The babies are going to have a blast!



  1. A chicken tractor????????????????? I love it.

  2. Yup... obviously photographic explanation is coming. Next weekend I am hoping to get started on the turkey enclosure, ought to be interesting to watch from afar! I suspect the pictures of the chicks will be a big hit!