October 3, 2014

We have chickens!

After a long break, we have welcomed back chickens to our backyard. Let me introduce you.

IMG_3917This is Cassandra, named by our Dear Boy for a character in the Ranger’s Apprentice books. She is a New Hampshire x Leghorn.

IMG_3919This is Emerald Star, named by our Dear Girl for a character in the Hetty Feather books . She has a lovely rusty red neck ruff.

IMG_3982This is Drusilla, named by My Man and I for the Goth styled vampire in the Buffy TV series.  We are clearly not as classy as our children. She is glossy black with iridescent green wing feathers.

Emerald Star and Drusilla are New Hamshire x Australorp. Australorps are an old Australian breed of chicken, great layers but they are as big as dogs.  Crossing them with the New Hamp makes them more of a backyard size.  We got our girls from Greg at Yummy Gardens in St Andrews.  He runs a lovely, humane place that is clean and very respectful to the chickens.

Our girls sleep in a little Swiss Family Robinson style coop nestled in the low boughs of the crab apple tree. Our Dear Boy and I built the coop over the space of a year from his timber stash and other bits around the yard.  The ramp is his invention and construction.

IMG_3994The coop is wired against foxes and the fenced run around the coop is set into the ground for extra protection against foxes.  One of our neighbours saw a fox on their balcony so I want to keep our girls safe.

Above the coop is one of the kids’ treehouse cubbies. Whilst his dad put in the platform, Our Dear Boy has built everything else and he has a style of construction all his own.

IMG_4003We have had our girls for just over a month now and we have just got our first eggs!  Such excitement!