Blog: What’s Up? Chicken Butt!! Meet our Free Range Backyard Chickens!


Blog: What’s Up? Chicken Butt!! Meet our Free Range Backyard Chickens!

Meet the newest ladies to join our project!



A few Mondays ago we drove about an hour upstate and picked up 20 beautiful Redstar hens and 1 super sassy Araucana!
We’d like to give a big ol’ thanks to Orrin Pierson up at Pierson’s farm for selling us these lovely already-laying hens.
The hens love to walk around the property and the woods, eat worms and seeds, scratch for buried treasures, drink clean water, eat ticks, sneak inside the house and they love to socialize!

The chickens can often be found contemplating the meaning of life, and asking themselves questions like “Why am I here?”, “What does it mean to be a chicken?”and “What’s under that leaf?”

No conclusions yet.

They are super docile and we can easily just walk right up to them and pick them up. Except Ms. Sassy Pants, the Araucana. She’s pretty skiddish and runs very fast.

We are in the process of renovating a shed on the property to be able to permanently house our chickens. In the meantime, the ladies are being housed in a temporary coop that we put together with some fencing, a tarp, scraps of wood, and big poles/branches from the forest.

Hens prefer dark cozy spaces to lay eggs, and three or four hens will share one nest. We have 10 laying boxes for our 21 chickens. The boxes have dry leaves from around the land on the bottom. Big branches go across the coop at all different heights, and are supported by holes in the fence and secured by twine. The branches are there so that the hens can roost on them at night while they sleep.

What is it like taking care of these ladies?

Well our daily schedule looks a bit like this: Someone goes out around 6:30am and gives the girls some fresh food and clean water. We leave them in the coop until around 10:00am for now to make sure they get used to laying eggs inside the boxes, as opposed to around the yard. Around 10:00am we’ll let them out to roam the property, collect whatever eggs are in the boxes, and give them clean water if necessary. Once it gets dark out, we make sure there are 21 chickens in the coop, collect any eggs, and close them up for the night. They have been laying between 8 and 20 gorgeous brown eggs every day!

So, why is it important to us to have chickens?

Getting chickens was one step in becoming self-sufficient as a community.

On a larger scale, by getting fresh eggs every day from the chickens in our backyard, we have lessened our dependence on a food system that is fossil fuel dependent, chemical dependent, destructive to nature and is controlled by people and corporations that do not work to serve us, the Earth, or any of it’s inhabitants. That is not the kind of industry we want to be supporting with our dollars, or the kind of food we want to be bringing into our bodies.
Besides the political aspects of raising chickens, they serve very important functions in our system. The chickens are able to convert unusable materials, like grass, into something that we can eat, like eggs! The chickens also poop all over the yard, fertilizing the grass which will grow so they can eat it again! When they poop in their coop, we can easily compost it and use it in our garden. As the season progresses in our garden, the chickens can be used as little helpers in tilling up the soil, eating pests, and getting rid of crops that are done producing. When the chickens get a bit older and produce less and less, we can borrow a rooster to fertilize the eggs so we can propagate more chickens. Once they stop laying for good, we can make some tasty chicken soup!

Plus, they eat ticks…..Let me repeat, they eat TICKS!!!!

And that’s what’s up….

Eastern Light Project

an alternative to free range chickens, a mobile chicken coup or “ark”


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