|Fae and Luna|
I was baking and had got my ‘Happy Eggs’ out from the fridge and set them on the table, this was late Thursday afternoon. I am having problems with the whole way this country produces eggs, every time I purchase eggs especially from the supermarket I am supporting the atrocities that accompany the egg industry. Even being free-range still means that thousands of male chicks have been brutally discarded somewhere along the line. Me and GD always seem to be waiting for the right time to get chickens, its either after the cold season, after the holiday, lately after we move. I just thought that’s it last Thursday, life is now this moment, live now !, In my story is a garden with chickens. So rang Thorn’s and yep point of lay pullets were ready, timing was perfect!. Poor GD had not got his foot in the door half hour later when he was accosted by his excited wifey jumping up and down and chanting the chickens are ready, the chickens are ready !, he knew I had crossed the threshold and we would be going to collect the girls the following day. The following morning I was up bright and early clearing the run getting things ready, GD said he was having a nice long bath, then GD said he would like another cup of coffee, with a smirk on his face, finally we got going. Roberto from Thorns is the nicest guy who loves his chickens, there is nothing he does not know, he stood in the barn and pointed out the different breeds, their temperaments, their egg production, he brought some over to us at the viewing point to get to know, we made our selection a Black Maran we named ‘Fae’ from the fairy people, she has mystical emerald green feathers which do not show at all in the pictures but blaze in the sunshine, a White Star we named ‘Luna’ from Harry Potter as she is white like the moon and meant to be a bit scatty, White Stars are intelligent and have mischievous characters and we wanted personality and to mix it up a bit with this batch, and a Goldline we named ‘Crystal’ as we love our crystals, Crystal has already shown herself to be a very mummy character checking on the others and trail blazing exploration of her new home, Fae the largest, nuzzles like a cat into your neck or crook of the arm and is a big softie. Luna is gentle and will come right up to you, she is very graceful and almost aloof at the same time. She startles easily but then she sits very peacefully.
|Luna and Crystal
The girls have a permanent run and two movable runs which fit over deep beds, we can use the runs to either put over the crops we want to protect and let the girls free range or put the girls in and keep them over the beds that need turning.
I have thought long and hard about keeping chickens again, as for myself I have vegan preferences, but I do cook for a large mixed diet household who do not wish to be vegan. I respect my girlies, they are certainly not just egg machines to me, I will be doing my very best to give them good life experience, they are such darlings and promise to be full of character and fun.
It does mean I am supporting the chicken industry by buying my girls, maybe one day I will be further down the vegan path and will have sorted my cooking out to not include eggs. Trinity’s concious cooking is a great inspiration to me on this matter, but for now am going with what is present in my life.
I found this by a member on the chicken keeping UK site, ‘For every egg you eat, for every egg passed or sold to friends and family you are preventing a cruel life for an intensely reared and intensely farmed hen. Only 14% of free range birds go outside, trained by a feeding bell, it’s estimated that up to 40% of free range eggs are actually from caged birds inside and outside EU. All commercial egg production units dispose of birds passed their peak cycle, many are rescued and re-homed, but many are in pies after an appalling journey to slaughter and death’.
Life for me is changing and we are actively looking for a place where we can expand on an alternative lifestyle more than we are now, a thousand thousand times more !. But every journey has to begin with a first step then another follows, then another. I read a book recently by Jay Griffiths, her writings prick my heart and set off my soul ache for the wild, not the semi detached, semi milk, semi everything existence, where kids are given sedatives so they can fit the school education program.
Any ways my girls are here and I just wanted to introduce them to you, I am so happy with them and am sure I will be posting lots of updates on their urban garden living antics. Oh and Molly dog is happy to have some company, we had chickens when she was younger and is cool with them. She is a retriever though albeit an old old one and quiet expect one day to see her appearing around the back door having retrieved one.