Our family moved to Oklahoma in the winter of December 2013 in search of a better place and a simpler life. We found it here in the hills of Salina. Part of our dream was to raise more of our own food in the most natural way possible. We love growing things and we love raising animals of all kinds.
We started with a tiny flock of Buff Orpington chickens. We were pretty thrilled the day we got our first egg. That seems so long ago now. We added Black Orpingtons a couple of years ago for their size. We now have a flock that averages 50 hens and 3 roosters. There are always eggs in the incubator and chicks in the brooder so there’s more to come.
After the chickens, we added some goats and a couple mini-donkeys, some geese, a couple pigs, far too many cats, several rabbits, and a pair of peacocks to our farm. It’s the simpler life we were looking for — but very, very busy.
Our chickens free-range all day and are provided with supplemental feed for whatever vitamins and minerals may be lacking somewhere on our 17 acres in a given season. We grow many vegetables and forage specifically for the chickens and livestock. We also sprout oats, sunflower, and wheat for them during the winter months.
Our Orpingtons are cold-tolerant and will lay reliably throughout the winter months. We rarely have a shortage of eggs around here. Many of our extra eggs are fed to our pigs or scrambled and fed back to our young chicks. Once per year I also dehydrate and powder some of the extras to use as a protein supplement to be added to the rest of our animals’ feed. Many other eggs are incubated and hatched because … hatching baby chickens is addictive! And you can never have too many chickens, right? Maybe that’s just me…