Hens On The Homestead: 6 Questions You Need To Answer Before You Get Chickens


The backyard chicken craze is gaining momentum as more people come to realize that chickens are entertaining, social, and useful pets. Many are also drawn to raising chickens because, of all the barnyard livestock, they have a reputation of being among the easiest and cheapest to keep. Chickens are the second most cost efficient homestead animal in converting feed to meat (the first being fish, which are far less feasible for the Canadian backyard homestead.) There is also a huge interest among urbanites, small-town dwellers, and country-folk alike in knowing where our food comes from and learning to raise it ourselves. Considering all of this it’s no wonder that chickens are such a popular backyard pet! If you’re just starting out with chickens, though (or even sometimes if you’ve been raising chickens for years!) it can be very overwhelming when trying to decide on what type of chickens to get, how many, should you have a rooster or just hens, etc. etc. Little Farm in the Alberta Foothills is here to help!

Is keeping chickens for you? And what exactly should you consider when you are trying to decide on a chicken breed? In this blog entry I will pose a few questions that you need to consider when deciding the answers to these very important questions, and relate to you our personal experiences. Continue reading

From the Recipe Box: Little Farm Turkey Veggie Soup

lfsoupI come from a long line of soup-makers (and soup eaters!) It truly is a lunch and supper staple for my family. Soup is so versatile and it tends to improve with age as the flavours mellow out and blend together. Homemade soup is easy to freeze, budget friendly, can be packed in a school or work lunch (in a thermos or to be heated on the spot), and makes for a filling but healthy meal at any time of year. My mom and grandmothers are phenomenal soup chefs. My maternal grandma never follows a recipe. She throws in a little of this and a little of that. Her soup never turns out the same way twice, but it is invariably delicious and a favourite among her grandchildren! Mom also is a soup master artist working in the medium of soup! She regularly cooks large batches of her different soups – turkey vegetable, roasted vegetable, seafood chowder, beef vegetable, cream of squash, Thai chicken, roasted red pepper, and more. She then freezes them in meal-sized portions to be thawed and used whenever she likes. I am hoping to get into this clever habit myself – it solves two problems, lack of time for meal prep and the desire to eat healthy home-cooked meals without the hassle and mess of always cooking from scratch three meals per day! Continue reading