Within their wide area, our chickens are free to wander and explore. Over the years we have built 4 hen houses; the first are small and now used for special situations - new chickens, babies, etc. They have a selection of nesting places, lined with straw. In 2017, we made a pond which attracts chickens as well as the three ducks. In the summer, we set up extra shading for them to get out of the scortching sun.
Our birds are fed on grain (fermented, except in sub-zero temperatures) and greens. And when "in season", they delight in grubs and bugs, such as Colorado beetle. They can drink from different pots around the area; most of all, they love drinking directly from the spout of the hose.
Each has their character: some more dominant, more daring, others more friendly and ready to be stroked when they come and peck at your shoes... As we get to know them, we learn what they prefer and are improving their conditions even more.
Children in particular want to see the chickens. Ours are so friendly and curious, as soon as someone comes to the gate they come to welcome us and find out if we have food for them. When someone is new, the noise and movement can be a little frightening, especially for small children about as tall as a cock! That is why we have our way of introducing little people: they can then feel safe and understand how hens might react. The bonds that are formed are heart warming!
Eggs with deep yellow yolks come from hens which are free to move around and get a varied diet. Come and see for yourselves!