Heritage chickens will initially be raised for egg and fertilizer production. Eggs will supplement family food needs while providing a healthier product, with excess eggs being donated to local food banks and sold on a small, retail basis. Chicken litter will be used as fertilizer on various produce plots as well as for making all natural compost.
If successful, 2013 operations will including raising additional chickens for breeding and meat production.
Our initial choice for chickens is the Silver Laced Wyandotte.
Silver Laced Wyandotte's are the original Wyandotte variety. They have a heavy body and small rose comb. The hens are hardy, energetic and faithful layers. They were admitted to the American Standard of Perfection in 1888 and originated in New York. They work well in either confinement or free range.
- Average Size: Hen - 6.5 pounds; Pullet - 5.5 pounds; Rooster - 8.5 pounds; Cockerel - 7.5 pounds.
- Purpose: Dual, egg laying and meat production.
- Egg Color: Brown
- Average Egg Production: 200 per year.
- ALBC: Recovering status, considered a sustainable heritage chicken breed.
Due to the variety of animals expected to be raised on the farm, isolating animals is a priority. As a result, the plot chosen to house the chickens needed to be in an area that would not be used to house other poultry or stock and would be isolated from other types of poultry. The area chosen for the plot to house the chicken coop is behind the main home. While the goat pen will be on two sides of this plot, cross contamination should not be an issue (more on the goats will appear in a future post).
The pen will be approximately 1,000 square feet and will contain a hen house. It is anticipated that 25 Wyandotte Silver Laced pullets will initially be purchased by mid to late March. The pen is ready to be fenced once the hen house is constructed.