It's a very soggy January day in Carson Valley but there is a glimmer of hope on the horizon!
The, "One and Only", "Original", "Best in the Nation", poultry catalog arrived today!
Five years ago we made a major life change and moved from a 7,000 sq. ft. lot in the center of town to 5 - now 10 acres! That's a blog of a different color and some day I'll write it, but suffice to say, here we are living the "Dream Book" life we designed.
Part of that design included chicken, ducks, turkeys and geese! We have them all.
We started, as I've learned most folks do with the classic Rhode Island Reds.
This is one of the most famous and all time popular breeds of truly American chickens. Developed in the early part of this century in the state of the same name, they have maintained their reputation as a dual purpose fowl through the years. Outstanding for production qualities, they have led the contests for brown egg layers time after time. No other heavy breed lays more or better eggs than the Rhode Island Reds. Our "production" strain is keeping up the fine reputation of this old favorite. Baby chicks are a rusty red color and the mature birds are a variety of mahogany red.
We then branched out from there to Araucanas.
The "Easter Egg Chicken", This unusual breed gets its name from the Indian tribe of Chile where they were first discovered. Araucanas lay beautiful colored eggs of blue-green shades from turquoise to deep olive. These natural Easter Eggs will amaze your friends and make a great "show and tell" project for school. Adults are of medium size with pea combs and our breeding stock is selected for their ability to produce colored eggs. They exhibit a wonderful combination of colors and color patterns and 10 or 20 of these birds make an absolutely beautiful laying flock that is extremely hardy and will be the talk of the town. Baby chicks come in all colors, plain and fancy, just like the adults. This is a unique breed and great fun to have when the colored eggs start coming.
After a coupe years of regular "average" cluckers, we moved on to the more exotic, Silkies
Both China and Japan claim the origin of these unique bantams and historians have traced them back to Marco Polo. Their black skin and feathers that feel much like hair make them one of our most unusual varieties of chickens. Our Silkies come both bearded and non-bearded and are tremendous setters on all types of eggs. They are striking in appearance with their white plumage and mulberry colored comb, face, and wattles. The ear lobes are a light blue turquoise and the skin is dark bluish/black. They are a table delicacy in the orient.
Last year we finally acquired 4 beautiful guineas hens. We originally were inspired by the beautiful "helmut shapped fowl that run freely around the grounds of Mt. Vernon, George Washington's home in Virginia.
These guineas are a beautiful soft buff color and appear to be polka-dotted with their white spots. They are excellent layers and seem to come into production earlier than many of the other varieties of guineas.
So, now visions of feathered friends are dancing in my head, I'm thinking of future spring days full of heat lamped horse troughs full of baby peeps and what hue we are going to ad to the rainbow of our beaked babies!
Our collectin includes many others ... billed and beaked ... and I'll reserve feathered comments on them for another post.
Today ... I'm happy thinking about the next generation!