C’est la fin!
I at long last completed construction of a lovely chicken coop for my 4 chickens. I started it last year at Easter time, and worked on it each school holiday after. It was a real education to build, and a test of my skills.
I used mostly materials that I scrounged, except for the chicken wire, the corrugated zinc, and the nails and screws. I’m really proud and take pleasure in the fact that I didn’t buy all the wood; as you can see above, the timber—mainly the reused fence palings—has such character, and is pretty sturdy, and didn’t cost me a cent.
We get a few eggs a day from our 4 girls, and they are lovely to eat, and share among the family. Part of the reward is financial, with the eggs saving us a bit of money here and there. It’s nothing that will pay off the home loan in 10 years, but it all helps. It is also rewarding being a little more self-sufficient, and relying less on the shopping markets. With our vegie garden, we can nearly eat whole meals where everything has been produced at home.
Meet the Ladies
We have four hens, two are about 3 or 4 months older than the other two, and we’ve had two die—one just dropped dead mysteriously after a week, and one died after an injury to its leg. We first got Ethel and Bethel at 16 or 17 weeks old. Then we had three 7-week-old chicks given to us by a friend. They all turned out to be roosters. We couldn’t believe it and were a little traumatised when we gave them away. We then got three new pullets from the hatchery nearby and now we have the four. Ethel is a Leghorn crossed with an Australorp and is a bully, Bethel is a lovely and gentle Australorp cross Rhode Island Red. Milly is a pure Rhode Island Red, and Black Betty is a pure Australorp.
If you’ve never had chickens before and are thinking about it, jump in because they are great fun, and you get more than you put in.