For the past three and a half years we have been the proud caretakers of a flock of chickens.
With great care we built the first coop.
Our original flock fared well in their portable home. In the winter we parked them below our kitchen porch and could drop scraps directly into their yard even on deep snow days. We got many beautiful and delicious eggs, had noticeably fewer bugs, a much greener lawn, and endless entertainment.
Our first batch of hens was such a success that after about a year, we expanded our flock and tried our hand at putting day old chicks under our regularly-broody hen.
The new mix of birds didn't quite work in the small coop so we upgraded their living situation.
After another year we lost a few to foxes and who knows what, bought a handful of ready-to-lay hens, and moved a couple to "freezer camp." This spring we were down to six hens, one of which (one of our best layers) was from our original eight.
For their last season with us we scrapped together a smaller, more portable coop. Our youngest chickens were already beyond their best laying days. We were averaging a few eggs a week when at their most we were getting almost six dozen a week.
In the spring we will see if we are ready to start fresh with a new batch of girls, but for now we are going to enjoy a chicken-free cold season. These girls all served us well. We have fewer ticks and mosquitos, more and greener grass, and wonderful memories of luscious eggs and silly chicken antics.
Thank you ladies and so long!