Friday, June 17, 2011

Pick, Pick, Pick, talk a lot, talk a little more!

It's definitely going to take a little time to get the chickens here on the farm. Jerry doesn't say much about it, which translates into "I don't want to get involved". We have been crazy busy, to say the least, and I know that he's feeling a bit overwhelmed, but I am ready to take this on, and hopeful that our variance request will be accepted, just as soon as we write it and send it in! I've been reading up on chicken care, and basically, they raise themselves. Once you provide a safe coop and a fairly safe predator-free yard, they can be pretty darn easy to care for. Aside from cleaning and feeding, which I would imagine becomes second nature after a few tries, the chicken yard should be a moveable and easy access wood structure, which is strong enough to withstand at least a few snowfalls. I know that raking the roof on our OWN stucture becomes an issue in the wintertime, but I am confident that I could tackle at least that much. I like having some responsibility that is tied into the weather because of course the house is too much for me to get involved with, but the chicken coop should be more manageable! For an environment that has the potential for snow seven months out of the year, snow roof-removal is something you have to consider. Although I would like to free-range the chickens during the spring-summmer months, I know that keeping their yard near to the house eliminates the need for a distant walkway to the coop. We want it as close as possible during those bitter cold winter months-who wants to tread through the snow on a freezing November morning to get to the hen-house? NOT ME! And so, I have picked the corner of of the pasture that is closest to our house. I am scoping out chicken coops, and the slope roofed A-frame seems like the best sort of house to me, for a starter chicken farmer: It's compact, it can be easily wheeled around the property, and the hens can hang on on the grassy area below when they are confined. When they are NOT confined, a simple door on the side will allow their grazing and nit-picking to be done whereever they like. Now these are plans to be purchased, and I think with a materials list I might be able to pull this off. Right now I am observing Caroga Carl (our own personal ground hog) making his way around the pasture, so there is plenty of nature's gifts available for the chickens to find on their property. I'm not investing any money into the coop until we are given permission by the town of Caroga, but I'm getting all my chicks in a row, so to speak. I'll keep you posted!

No comments: