Monday, April 07, 2008

Chickens In The Mail

According to my mother, I have officially crossed over into true country-gal territory with the delivery of today's mail:

Look what came in the mail today!

Packed into that tiny box, and chirping like CRAZY, were 29 Buff Orpington chicks (4 more than we'd ordered, included by the hatchery for "insurance"), and 3 Araucanas. The Buff Orps are "straight run," about 50/50 pullets and cockerels, and the Araucanas are all pullets (females). All emerged energetically, with a healthy thirst and appetite, and set about making themselves right at home in the brooder we set up (just for the first 24 hours) in the office upstairs.

chick huddle

Bella, of course, was enthralled.

Bella meets chicky

I've been a little concerned over what will happen with her in the event that some of these cute fuzzy chickies become dinner, down the road a few months, and have taken care to be honest with her about that outcome for some of the livestock. After she played with them a little, I asked her, "So, do you think you'll be able to eat one of these chickens if we cook one for dinner after they get big and grown?"

I needn't have worried, I don't guess, because I got an immediate, "Yes," followed by her pointing one out, and declaring, "I'm gonna eat THAT one."

Life as a farm-girl. At least it's honest. As for me, I'm definitely not naming any of the Buffs (at least not yet), because there's no way I'll be able to put, say, "Rosie" or "Gerald" in the stew-pot. However, the Araucanas are for egg production and entertainment value only, so if anyone would like to propose names for the three Araucana sisters, have at it. I'm trying not to have a favorite, but I'm not made of STONE, people.

the tiniest araucana


  1. I had no idea you could get chickens thru the mail... they are very cute :)

  2. Oh, can I touch them? I want to touch them SO BAD!

  3. That box looks like an INS nightmare waiting to happen. Just chirp "La Migra!" and watch them scatter.

  4. The "I'm gonna eat THAT one!" just made my morning!!!

  5. If my daughter EVER sees this post, she'll spend the rest of her life waiting by the mailbox. She's 24!

    They are sooooo cute. I don't think I could eat them.

    As for names, how about Cinderella, Anastasia and Druzilla. Bella should like that.

  6. Your daughter cracks me up. Great story.

    We had a bunch of egg-laying chickens when I was wee. My mom named them after characters in Gone with the Wind.

    Other than that, I've got nothing. I'm terrible at naming things. I have a tabby cat named... Tabby. End of discussion.

  7. Bella is a stitch! They are awfully cute.

  8. How about Marsha, Jan, Cindy?

    Or perhaps Flora, Fauna, Merriweather.

  9. Billie Jo, Betty Jo, Bobbi Jo

    just kidding... LOL!

    You lucky people, you! We're still stuck in a cookie cutter neighborhood with an over-active Nazi Homeowner's association and crazy neighbors living at arm's length. joy.


  10. Do you LOVE them! We pick up our geese today and this year we got some turkeys too....not for dinner.
    have fun : )

  11. Awwww! I wanna hold the little baby chickies! I would have a hard time eating them, though. :)

  12. Bella is a rockstar. The moment the cute fuzzinness came my way, I'd be toast.

  13. Oh, you totally need to name them after the Three Graces. Then your eggs will be propitiously engendered. : )

  14. How about, Bibbity, Bobbity, and Boo! haha! That's the same comment we get from my daughter when it comes to show pigs..she always names one Bacon and the other Sausage...we even have a stuffed pig named Hammy!

    You're daughter will love the colored eggs. It's Easter every day!


  15. I *loved* your daughter's comment. Very practical. Years ago, my oldest daughter did something similar when I had to kill the not-quite-dead catfish she caught at a fishing rodeo (it was swimming in our sink, all revived and hopeful), clean it, and cook it for her. She rubbed her tummy and said, "We eated him -- he was so good!" Me -- I was prostrate on the couch afterward. :oP

    Great post! I discovered your blog through Twitter. :o)

  16. When I was a kid, one of my favourite things was when someone would bring spring chicks to church around Easter. I don't know if I would be able to show restraint around so much yellow, fluffy cuteness.

  17. My oldest son is so awful-I read him the part about Bella saying she would eat one, and he said you should name them-"patty, fricassee, ala king, fried, broiled"-he's terrible!

    They really are cute ;)

  18. How adorable! I'm not sure I could do it. Those Araucanas are too cute!

  19. Wow. I also had no idea you could mail order baby chicks. My mind is a little bit blown right now.

  20. Chickens in the mail? Now I have heard EVERYTHING!!

  21. These people haven't heard of chickens in the mail? I used to love it when I'd go to the post office when some had been delivered!

    And, names? Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail. Duh.

  22. When we were kids, the post office was in the back of the office/store where my Dad worked on the farm (in Pickens, AR). We also caught the bus there. We used to LOVE it when someone ordered chickens. We would lay on the nasty floor and almost miss the bus because we were so busy talking to them.

  23. They are SO, SO, SO cute! I think Buff Orpingtons are absolutely beautiful chickens! And your Araucanas will lay some great Easter Eggs - ours did green ones. No ham though.

  24. When I was in grade school, my Dad drove a mail truck route between the large central post office and smaller, more rural post offices. On days when there was no school, we would sometimes ride with him. Often, when crates of chicks were being delivered some would get loose. My brother and I had a grand old time chasing them around the docks. I guess there's better packaging these days. That, or maybe the other truck drivers actually let a couple loose just to watch the kids chase them around for their own entertainment.

    Brings back fond memories :)

  25. Ha, ha, ha! The chick is in the mail!

    My grandfather raised ducks every summer, but he chickened out when it came to eating them, bringing them back to the farm to be uh, eaten by someone else.


  26. This totally reminds me about the Dirty Jobs episode when host Mike Rowe showed us how people get their chickens - from egg to mailbox - and it was very interesting.

    "Sexing" the chickens by squeezing their poop out, not so much.

    Good luck with the new peeps!

  27. Oh wow, does that bring back memories!

    My folks bought chicks, and all the males ended up in the freezer, and all the females layed (laid?) eggs and I collected and cleaned them, then sold them to the neighbors.

    Good times.

  28. I would love to have chickens when we have our "dream home" on our "dream property." I read the Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and the chapter on her youngest daughter's chicken business was an excellent read. Made me want to have chickens even more.

    Enjoy your chicks!

  29. She looks like she's about to eat that one.

  30. I'm so excited for you! They are so cute...especially the last one. I vote for naming them after the Petticoat Junction girls, too!

    And, I must tell you that The Man stills screams with laughter about your Gary story from a few posts back...we were driving along the other day, and he asked if you had gotten the chickens yet. I told him that I hadn't checked in couple of days, and then he said "poor ol' Gary." So I sort of curl my hands into claws, like I'm hanging on to a certain purple collar, and he just has hysterics. We are easily amused, I guess.

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