Tag Archives: farming

A terrible thing to waste

Ever since I puckered up the courage to re-home my rooster Taz, I’ve been feeling guilty about the lack of stimulation in my chickens’ lives. He is off to a randy new free-range home that includes not only hens and other roosters with whom he might develop a bromance, but an eclectic assortment of other interesting […]


           Henpecked Manitou Springs, Colorado May 14, 2015

Chickhood: Flight

One of the delights of raising chicks is witnessing that phase of their young lives in which they realize they have wings, and can use them.  They discover they can do what many of us dreamed as children: They can fly. Wings feather and fill early in a bird’s development, so that by the time chickens have reached the […]

Chickhood: Up and out

Thursday marked dual milestones in the lives of my four little chickens, who decided it was time to not only venture outside the coop during the day, but to roost at night. The first experience was all excitement and wonder. Impelled by the uncontainable energy of youth, they ran about the run and peered at the yard beyond.  […]

The first monkey

My six-week-old Americana chick crowed yesterday, in the way of young cockerels everywhere: an amputated, creaky rasp. It would be a comic sound were it not also confirmation that I need to find little Taz a good home. It’s a familiar challenge, one I’ve had to undertake with every group of chicks I’ve raised. All were […]

Chickhood: That awkward phase

In the scant four weeks of their little lives, my wee ones have grown from cute downy chicks into that sixth-grade school photo most of us would rather forget: While their appearance is quickly and radically changing, their temperaments have remained much as first observed. My busy, bossy  Americana, now dubbed Taz (for the Tasmanian […]


Yesterday, Chirp became the first of my young hens to go broody.  When I left for work, she was sitting on the nest; when I returned five hours later, she was still there.  She pecked my hand sternly when I reached into the nest box to lift her out and  look her over. When I set her […]

Girls with beards!

We have just passed the height of catalog season, during which my mailbox was visited by the usual assortment of unwanted and thereby wasted circulars advertising Christmas deals on clothing, food and other consumables. Most of these went directly into the recycle bin, but I set aside one catalog that arrived recently, anticipating a pleasant winter night’s perusal […]

Oh, you meant there

Just a brief update to report that — after an inauspicious start (see “Just put that anywhere,” Dec. 15) — my little flock seems to be getting the “nest” idea. Ellie, my green-egg layer, got it right the first time, and at least one of the other girls — I’m not sure who — has joined her.  And […]

The elegant egg

There was much commotion at mid-morning yesterday, not just one but all of the hens clucking loudly in a raucous chorus that was hard to interpret: predator warning, or some benign excitement? I hustled out to the coop — the girls were staying in, due to snow and cold — and knelt beside them to get a birds-eye […]