Chicken Talk

I havent talked about my hens in a while, so I'll update you, and answer questions I've been emailed.

We added a gate that I made from a window that's been layin around the yard that I got for free. I still have to paint the posts and put the finishing pieces on to complete it. But because we used recycled wood and wire I already had, it only cost $6 for hardware.

During the winter, it got incredibly wet back in the coop, despite putting an enormous tarp over everything. Mud and Poop combined made for a frustrating mess. So we bought some straw, and it's been so nice. Not only does it soak up whatever, it keeps the flies down and makes for very easy cleanup. The girls love tossing it around.
Now that it's less muddy, we'll be putting sand back inside the back of the cage. It's cool on their feet and they need the little pebbles to help digest food. This is a pic from last summer, I have to note, we do NOT use the red plastic feeders anymore. They are a joke. I opted for an antique galvanized feeder that clips to the side and doesnt touch the ground.

This is Pepper Pots. She is my lead hen and definitely rules the roost. She's curious and doesnt leave my side when I'm out in the yard.
My 4 year old is a farmer at heart. She wakes up at the crack of dawn, lets the girls out of their coop, gathers the eggs from the nest and feeds them. I think it's safe to say this is her first chore, and she chose to do it.
Quick Q&A:

1. Do chickens poop a lot?.....Oh yes. There is a LOT of chicken ish. If they ish in the lawn, I spray it down with water so it breaks up. There's a lot of ish.

2. What do they eat?.....We are lucky to live within walking distance from a feed store that has quality grain feed. That's their staple. On colder days we'll throw in "scratch" which is just corn pieces to warm up their bodies. It's just a treat. I also started mealworms since they are high in protein, again, in moderation. Otherwise they roam the yard looking for bugs, grass, scratching the ground. If you ever find crane fly larvae, it's like a delicatessen to them.  And of course, table scraps. ( cooked rice, oats, bread, watermelon, lettuce, spinach, blackberries etc)

3. How many eggs do you get?....We have 3 hens and are getting 3 per day. Browns and Pinks and Cream colored eggs and they're big!


  1. What an informative post. And how lucky are you to have such a great coop helper! Thanks for sharing.

  2. I love your coop! Do you use the straw/hay only in the winter and sand in the summer? We currently use wood shavings and they are so messy! Do you use the straw inside the actual coop or only in the run? I'm always looking for new ideas. :) Thanks!

  3. Hi! We are going to stick with straw, year round. inside their coop is sand AND a little bit of straw. It's just so easy to clean up. We have wood shavings only for their nests.

  4. I am toying with the idea of chickens too, your little hen yard is adorable! I am just afraid of the foxes that live out here in the country, any advice?