My name is Sandy and I am hopelessly addicted to chickens!
With the new year approaching I should join chickens anonymous or make a resolution to get this habit of mine under control, but truthfully, it’s not likely to happen any time soon.
So, when did this obsession begin? It was all quite innocent, really. A few years ago, I had a pretty significant life trauma. During that time, I would reminisce about my childhood and the backyard chickens my parents kept. I remember mesmerizing several roosters by stroking their earlobes so that they would fall asleep in my lap. 'That’s it!' I thought. Raising some baby chicks would give me something to do with the added benefit of fresh eggs later on.
Chicken Math is a term used among backyard chicken enthusiasts. It means that you promise yourself you are only going to have a set amount of chickens. If you are planning to keep that promise, then raising them from chicks is a huge mistake.
Baby chicks are sent from the hatchery in a box to the post office, priority mail. You can hear their little "cheep cheep" in the back the minute you open the post office door. Those fuzzy little bundles of peeping get into your blood quickly. It's even worse when one of your mama hens hatches them out for you.
Watching your babies' personalities emerge is an unexplainable high. Each developmental stage brings amazement: from fuzz ball babies, to gangly preteens covered in pin feathers, then on to teenagers learning to crow or cackle, and finally becoming adult mamas laying their first eggs. Oh my! My Chicken Math was 15. Today, I have over 50, not to mention the guinea hens and turkeys. Don't get me started on the turkeys!
Do I regret my chicken addiction? Absolutely not. These birds have given me countless hours of stress management and personal therapy. So if you decide you want 'just a few chickens,' be prepared for the multiplication we call Chicken Math!