The latest installment in my bucket list thread is this rakish looking model, a large size plastic bucket with a weather proof lid complete with locking handles. I need it for the chickens. Well, really they are hens, laying hens.
I wanted my own fresh eggs, so I bought a henhouse and enclosed a chicken run. It is equipped with suspended containers for water and feed. The feed needs to be replenished regularly and it comes in very large 25 kilo bags. The feed bag goes in the bucket, and it stays dry in all weather. Each morning I refill the feeder from the bucket.
The weather proof locking handles double up to keep out varmints. We don’t have to worry about raccoons or bears in Ireland but never underestimate the intelligence of a fox, a stoat, a rat a mouse or a crow.
The hens are working out well. They are mostly Blackrocks, which is a first generation cross between Rhode Island Reds and Plymouth Rock Barred. A couple of them are slimmer and have white feathers at the neck. They are White Star crosses, which are Rhode Island Reds crossed with a Light Sussex. I figure William Carlos Williams had either Light Sussex or possibly Leghorns, but he is never so specific is he?
Currently we get 5 to 6 eggs a day from 6 hens. That will tail off come winter, but a light I installed in the coop should prevent a complete drop off.
Hens are great for reducing your garbage load as they eat all your food scraps. They then produce copious amounts of good manure which goes to the vegetable garden, to produce more food. Should they stop laying for any reason there is always a recipe for coq au vin…….
The Red Wheelbarrow; by William Carlos Williams
so much depends
a red wheel
glazed with rain
beside the white