Projects for 2016
Some of my projects have been ongoing for the past few years and some are just beginning. I always have a few Guineas and a couple of Heritage Breed Turkeys around. They pretty much free range and keep everyone else in order. In 2012, I bought a Mute Swan male that I named Barry. It took me 2 more years to find a mate for him to replace the one he had lost before I got him and a year for Barry and Rachel to bond. I was hoping that in 2015, they would produce some cygnets for us but Barry died unexpectedly in the winter of 2014-2015 so I am searching for a DNA verified male Mute Swan mate for Rachel.
The Pheasants have been a very pleasant surprise. It was very surprising how they have become so tame. They are just here for my own enjoyment. There are few birds that can add so much color to a pen. Unfortunately, I cannot allow them to free range or they would just fly away. That is sad because they would look beautiful in the yard but I enjoy them anyway. They are very seasonal layers and I don't plan to hatch eggs so check the sales page in the spring, I will likely be offering hatching eggs for sale from my Red and Yellow Golden Pheasants.
A favorite project is my Chocolate Araucana's. It's a long term thing for me and I expect to work on the project a few more years before they are ready to show or sell. I plan to perfect them before selling anything from this pen. I am dabbling with both the Dun gene that makes a chocolate color as well as the Recessive/Sex Linked gene that came from the Orpingtons when the first Chocolate Orpingtons were imported into the US from Great Britain. I'm even working on producing a color not seen yet in the United States, called Beige in the UK, the color is a special combination of Dun plus chocolate. The end product will essentially be an Araucana but chocolate in color.
A NICE double tufted/rumpless chick with deep yellow skin!
Another breed that I have really come to love is the Tomaru. They are a longtailed, longcrower from Indonesia. They have a very nice baritone crow that is longer than the average rooster, noticeably longer.
The Cemani are a fairly recent project, along with a few fibro projects including fibro Araucana's.
Jungle fowl are a future project that I am preparing for. They are rare, exotic and have requirements beyond the typical chicken yard so this project takes a lot of planning.
I am planning the Jungle Fowl pen for 2016. They are a delicate species so I'm still very guarded about them and I don't expect to have much going with them for a while as I learn how to manage them.
Lastly, how about an Emu? Yep, got one of those too. I won an auction on Ebay for an Emu egg for $15........ Had no clue if it would hatch or not but 50 days later.....
Ducky and Jacob doing the Emu dance