One of the latest additions to the farm is this portable chicken coop. It will accomodate 8 chickens and the plan is to move it into a garden once we’re finished harvesting, to let the chickens fertilize, till and eradicate weeds and pests for us. We’ll enclose the garden with net fencing and shut the chickens up safely in the coop at night.
These are the intended residents for the new coop and one we’re still working on. They’re Dominickers (aka “Dominiques”). Dominickers are believed to be the oldest breed in America and were once very popular farm birds. They are a hearty, dual-purpose breed, well-suited to foraging and to brooding. Because those traits (very important on a traditional farm) are undesirable in factory-raised chickens, the Dominicker breed nearly went extinct and even now is considered endangered. While we don’t like getting chicks from hatcheries, we wanted to add this breed to our farm and we’re very pleased to have them.
We’re brooding them in the basement, for now. We use a plastic kiddie swimming pool and it has always worked fine. Once they’re big enough to start hopping out of it, we’ll move them to a barn stall, or to their new coop home until they’re big enough to free range.