Chicken Parade!

It was an eventful weekend in the tiny town of Edison, Washington! This past Sunday was the annual Edison Chicken Parade, which draws people from all over Skagit and Whatcom County (and soon, the world?) to celebrate their love of chickens. I brought my trusty Chickenlandiamobile to join the fun.

Me and my Chickenlandiamobile

The parade was absolutely FULL of chicken-loving people. People carried their favorite chickens or pulled them in tiny floats. There were chicken hats, chicken feet, chicken skirts, and even chicken shoes. The chicken fashion was definitely over-the-top and utterly awesome. Even the dogs were dressed up. I loved it!

Dog or chicken? You decide.

Edison is a quaint little town (and I mean little; there’s probably not much more than a hundred people who actually live there)  in Northwest Washington, famous for its delicious food and art. The parade itself is about a block long, and travels past some of the best restaurants I have ever visited. I was pretty surprised by the amount of people at the parade this year. This is the first time I have attended, but I was told by many that it’s the biggest turn out they’ve seen so far. I imagine it will only continue to grow!

To get a real idea of just what a chicken party this parade was, click the play button below!

Would you like to see a chicken parade in your town? Let me know in the comments!

 

Tragedy at the Farm Store and The Stray Chicken Update

I hadn’t planned on writing about this, because I hadn’t planned on it happening. But that’s the way tragedy goes. It’s never planned. This week, my favorite community farm store was hit with a tragedy. At 5am on Monday morning, a fire started in their building. Unfortunately, the damage was devastating.

Hohl Feed and Seed on the morning of the fire.

I’m happy to report that all the animals, save for one missing ball python and some birds that could not be reached safely, are accounted for, in a safe place, and doing well. Many thanks to the Bellingham Fire Department and the Whatcom Humane Society for their expertise and help.

When my YouTube Channel launched last year, Hohl Feed and Seed was one of the first businesses to support me by sponsoring a video showcasing their store. You may remember the video, Surprise Duckling at the Farm Store. If you haven’t seen it, you can watch it by clicking the play button below.

I’m not sure what the future holds for Hohl Feed and Seed, but for now I just ask that you please send some healing thoughts to everyone involved in this unfortunate event.

In life, there are always good things along with the bad. That’s why I’m happy to also be writing about Chick Norris, the stray chicken that my friend Christy rescued a few weeks ago from a strip mall parking lot. If you haven’t seen the original Chickenlandia Stories video, click here. Then make sure to check out the update, where I show you how Chick Norris is getting along with her new flock and talk a bit about protecting your chickens from predators as well. Just click the play button below!

Do you have a chicken rescue story? Let me know in the comments below!

The Forbidden Chicken Dance!

Once upon a time in Chickenlandia, The Little King declared his love for dancing. The President of Chickenlandia was a benevolent leader, and so encouraged dancing of all kinds. Well, almost all kinds. There was one chicken dance that was strictly forbidden!

On one fateful day, The Little King of Chickenlandia declared his desire to dance The Serama, The Forbidden Chicken Dance! It was, of course, met with disgust from The President of Chickenlandia.

But that didn’t stop The Little King from bustin’ some serious moves!

Do you think The President of Chickenlandia came around? You’ll have to watch the video to find out!

The Stray Chicken

I’m a little late getting this blog post out, but only because of the extreme weather we’ve been experiencing here in the Pacific Northwest. Looking back on the events of last week, when my friend Christy worked tirelessly to rescue a stray chicken living in the local Denny’s parking lot, I’m even more grateful to her. This is no kind of weather for a chicken to endure alone.

If you haven’t seen the video yet, here’s some background for you. For the last year, there have been many sightings and rumors of a chicken living in a strip mall near one of the busiest roads in Bellingham. Few pictures were captured, but last week I was able to grab this one.

My friend Christy is a passionate animal lover and could not tolerate the idea of this chicken living without a flock in a high-traffic area. Even though there were some who encouraged her not to do it (they preferred the idea of the chicken being “free”), Christy set out to capture the chicken and integrate it into her large flock. She called me for assistance.

Christy and I on the second day of trying to catch Chick Norris.

For two days, Christy, myself, and the guys at Cricket Wireless worked together to try and catch the chicken. We learned we had many supporters in the strip mall and online. Most people cheered the idea of “Nugget” (as named by the Denny’s folks) or “Chick Norris” (as named by the guys at Cricket Wireless) finally having a real home.

Me and the guys from Cricket Wireless.

This chicken was no fool, though. She proved herself to be very intelligent, and after two days of trying, we weren’t able to catch her. On the third night, after temperatures dropped to below freezing, Christy returned with her husband and a friend to attempt to pluck her off the roost. It was no easy task and traffic did have to stopped at one point, but Christy’s husband was able to catch her!

Chick Norris at her new home, in Christy’s arms. <3

To see the full story of Chick Norris, click the play button below!

Do you think Chick Norris is better off now or do you think she should have stayed free? Let me know in the comments!

Homeopathic Options for Respiratory Illness and Trauma in Chickens

Well, it’s been a month of yucky sicknesses here in the Chickenlandia household. I confess to being patient zero and infecting my children and husband with the dreaded cold and cough. When illness strikes, I almost always turn to my trusted homeopathic kits. I’ve been using homeopathy on myself for years, and now I use it on my family. Chickens are family right? That’s why this week, I’ve decided to share some homeopathic options for when chickens fall ill or experience trauma.

Caring for Philippe during his respiratory illness.

Disclaimer: The following is not meant to be a diagnosis or to replace veterinarian care. I fully support the idea of seeking professional help when needed. I also acknowledge that many people do not have that option. Please understand that I am not a veterinarian, doctor, scientist, or biologist. I’m just a chicken lady who has used homeopathics with success and wants to share that experience with you. Results may vary! Please do your own research. 

Chicken keeping is such a joyous experience! That is, until you walk into the chicken coop and find the dreaded scenario: a chicken is sick or injured, huddled in a corner. They can’t talk to you or tell you what’s wrong. You feel helpless and guilty, though you’re not sure why. You’re a good chicken parent! How could this happen?

My first course of action in this situation is to remove the affected chicken from my flock. I bring them inside and put them in a quiet, warm spot with soft lighting (or no lighting if it’s nighttime). It’s likely that both myself and my chicken are pretty stressed out at this point, so I use a product called Rescue Remedy to calm everyone down. I put a drop under my tongue, then put a drop on my chicken’s back and rub it into their skin. Now that I’m a tad calmer, it’s time create an action plan.

Picachu getting a dose of Rescue Remedy and homeopathics during a respiratory illness.

For shock and/or trauma, two homeopathic remedies come to mind: Arnica (aka Arnica Montana) for bruising, injury, and shock; and Aconite (aka Aconitum Napellus) for fright and shock. These two remedies are very popular for human use and should be available at most health food stores. Homeopathics come in different potencies, but I suggest 30c. It’s best to start with one or the other depending on the situation. To dose, I will put one pellet or one drop of each remedy into their water or food. Without getting into how homeopathics work (that’s a conversation for a professional homeopath), each time my chickens drinks that water or eats that food, they get a dose. If they aren’t eating or drinking on their own, I put a drop into their feeding syringe and get the dose into them that way. If I’m not noticing a change, I will try the other remedy. If I notice an improvement, I stop dosing unless I observe a backslide in their recovery.

This year, I had a respiratory illness go through my flock. Each chicken had the same symptom: lots of cruddy congestion in their respiratory passages. For this illness, I dosed them with a homeopathic remedy called Antimonium Crudum. I also placed a pellet in the flock’s community water as a preventative. To my delight, all chickens recovered. I was so encouraged by this outcome, because most of the time respiratory illnesses require antibiotics for the chicken to survive. I did have antibiotics available just in case, but it wasn’t necessary. Success!

My flock roosting together after recovering from their illness.

Homeopathy is a whole science on its own, and I certainly don’t claim to be an expert. My hope is that I can do a video with my professional homeopath at some point, so we can delve further into how to use it on chickens. For now, I hope you’ll take a moment and check out my latest video, which includes an easy tutorial on how to care for chickens in an emergency situation. Feel free to ask me questions here or in the comments on my YouTube channel. I’m happy to share my experience with you!

To read more about Homeopathy, click here.

Boiron USA: click here.

Bach Flower Remedies: click here.

Henny and Roo January 2019 Unboxing!

Not gonna lie, unboxing videos are one of my favorite things to create. I love love LOVE the whole subscription box thing, but I can’t really indulge in too many of them (I mean they do cost money lol!). Thankfully, Henny and Roo boxes always contain very useful and fun items that I know I’ll use. Just look at this scarf that came in the January 2019 box! Full disclosure: Henny and Roo does sponsor these videos. But I would not do them if I didn’t really believe in this company!

Me killin’ it with my new piece of #chickenfashion!

If you get a chance, please check out our latest unboxing video for January 2019. And don’t forget to use the coupon code CHICKENLANDIA for your own Henny and Roo subscription! Details are on YouTube, in the description of the video. Just click here. <3

What do you indulge in? Have you tried out a chicken subscription box? Let me know in the comments!

The Mealworm Farmher

Last week, I had yet another opportunity to meet an amazing farmer. But she doesn’t actually call herself that; she calls herself a farmher, and I’m totally here for it. Meet Holly Winters, the egg and mealworm farmher.

Holly Winters, Mealworm Farmher and owner of Egg Song Farm

Holly is the owner and operator of Egg Song Farm at The Barn at Holly Farm (she wants to be sure everyone knows that Holly Farm has been around for a really long time and is not named after her). Her story is similar to many I’ve heard before. While working as a Spanish teacher at her child’s preschool, she ran the schools chicken program. From there, her passion for poultry grew to something much more substantial.

The ones who started it all: Chickens!

She now sells her rainbow colored eggs at several surrounding farmer’s markets, and has a thriving live mealworm business that includes not only delivering live mealworms to customers and teaching others how to grow their own, but also collecting their frass (bug poop!) to sell and use as a sought after fertilizer. Who knew?

Happy mealworms chilling out in their substrate

Meeting Holly was a delight. She has an easy and enthusiastic personality that is truly infectious. When she shared all about the different life-cycles of her beetles and the benefits of their frass, her love for what she does was evident. I really had no idea there was such a growing mealworm industry, but I now understand why. Holly did mention that some folks even raise them for their own consumption! I’m not quite there yet, but maybe someday.

Holly Winters (left) and me, Dalia Monterroso, aka The President of Chickenlandia

So, yeah, I made a new awesome chicken friend and I couldn’t be happier about it. Holly and I had a great time geeking out over all things chicken and mealworm, and I think you will too! Just click the play button below to watch the full episode of Chickenlandia Stories: The Mealworm Farmher.

Did you have any idea mealworms were such a growing industry? Let me know in the comments!

Learn more about Farmhers here.

Holly is also an ambassador for Scratch and Peck Feed. Click here to learn more.

Peace Through Chickens

It’s almost Christmas, and children everywhere are dreaming about that special morning. I’m sure many of you adults also have a Christmas or holiday wish. I hope it comes true for you. As for me, I have one very important dream for this Christmas. My dream is that I can communicate my most sincere Chickenlandia message. It’s a message of peace. Peace through chickens, or whatever else brings it to you.

Beautiful hen in the snow.

I know what many think. They think it’s silly for me to believe humans could achieve peace through chickens. It does seem overly simplified, but when I fell in love with my first flock, I actually had no idea how much sitting among them would bring peace and meaning into my life. That’s when my Chickenlandia message was born, because I realized that people all over the world were sitting among their flocks and feeling the same way I was. What a wonderful common denominator!

Thai chicken farmer and his rooster.

Thoughout history, humans and chickens have created a deep and meaningful relationship. It’s one that has lasted throughout the ages despite our conflicts with each other. We’ve written stories, sang songs, and sometimes even found religious meaning in our feathered friends. There’s no end to the symbolism of the chicken, and it’s a symbol almost all of us recognize. Can you think of a culture that doesn’t enjoy chickens in some way?

Who doesn’t love a baby chick?

So, yes, I know it’s a simple-minded idea to think that chickens could somehow save the world. But maybe we need to start with something simple and go from there. Maybe we could all think about something small we have in common with our neighbor. Maybe if everyone did that, we could finally find the peace we’re looking for. And yes, we’re all looking for it. Every. Single. One of us.

Please take a moment to watch my Chickenlandia Christmas Special. Just click the play button below! I hope you love it. And I hope you have a wonderful holiday.

Do you have a Christmas or other holiday wish? Let me know in the comments!

One Big Happy Flock!

In Chickenlandia, there have always been chickens of many different varieties. I’ve had floofy ones, smooth ones, big ones, tiny ones, frizzled ones, silkie ones, fancy ones, scruffy ones, and everything in-between. I like to think of Chickenlandia as a reflection of what I someday hope the world can be, a place where everyone exists together in one big happy flock.

My flock enjoying each other’s company.

Alas, the world isn’t always what we want it to be. It seems now more than ever, conflict is at an all time high. Some of us seem to revel in the antagonism of our species, others fight against it, some totally ignore it, and some hide away. As I watch the behavior of my flock, I can’t help but see a bit of a reflection there. Especially when I’m integrating new chickens, like my three recent rescues, Double Chicken, Kiki, and Beast.

My three rescue seramas from the Whatcom Humane Society.

It took longer than I expected to integrate these three. Two of them are on the young side, and they are all smaller than my previously smallest chicken, Little Stinker. I honestly didn’t realize how small they were until I observed them next to my other bantams. And of course, they are REALLY small compared to my standard hens.

Big and Little!

Their integration was slow and required a lot of patience, but it wasn’t impossible. For about two weeks, they were able to see the flock and the flock was able to see them, but they could not get to each other. This prevented the most difficult of chicken nature from happening, which would include them hurting each other. After I put them all together, I still had to keep a very close eye on how they were doing as to prevent tragedy. Slowly but surely, my hard work paid off!

So, what did I learn about humanity from integrating chickens? I learned that if I want the world to get along, I have to do my part to encourage love. I learned that even though something might be part of our nature, we can still work to improve it. And I learned that as a human, it’s my job to look after the smallest and most vulnerable among us. I hope I continue to realize all the amazing things this flock has to show me. And I hope you do, too!

Have you always wanted to learn how to integrate bantams into a mixed flock? Maybe you’ve been afraid that they would get hurt but want to try? Every flock is different, but in my new YouTube video I explain how I make it possible for my flock to live together in peace and harmony. It goes right along with the spirit of Christmas, doesn’t it? Just click the play button below and enjoy. <3

What does your flock look like? Do you have different sized chickens living together? Let me know in the comments!

The Chicken Keeper

As you should know by now, I love making new friends. Since I began my Chickenlandia journey, I’ve met so many amazing people through a mutual love of chickens. This is why I always say, “Peace Through Chickens”, because I believe that if we focus on the things we have in common, we can see the humanity in each other and live peacefully. I think my new friend, The Chicken Keeper, would agree.

Maryanne Mills, my new chicken friend!

Meet the delightful Maryanne Mills. Recently, the kiddos and I got to take a tour of her farm. We met cows, goats, pigs, and of course, chickens! She showed us all the food her farm produces and I even got to take home some goodies for myself! It was such an amazing an enlightening experience, especially for my kiddos, who have grown up in a mostly urban environment. Maryanne spoke to them about how a farm works, what the role of each animal is, and how it all ties to together to create a sustainable system.

Billy and his new little friend, Titan the Calf.

What struck me the most about Maryanne was her warmth and kindness. It’s clear she loves each and every animal on the farm, and treats them with the upmost respect. This was evident when she introduced us to her chickens, a menagerie of retirees and rescues, each of which has a story. The most interesting part was that some chickens who live with Maryanne actually belong to someone else. She has made it possible for some who cannot own chickens to pick one out and keep them at her farm. That’s why I call her “The Chicken Keeper”. She makes chicken entertainment possible for others!

You know how sometimes when you meet someone, you just like them right away? That’s how I felt when I met Maryanne, and I know my kids felt the same. Taking a tour of her farm and being invited into her home was an experience that I’m so glad I had, and I’m sure we will be back soon. You can watch the whole tour on my new episode of Chickenlandia Stories by pressing the play button below! Don’t forget to visit my YouTube Channel and hit the subscribe and notification buttons so that you don’t miss any fun Chickenlandia videos.

How about you? Have you met any interesting people through a mutual love of chickens? Let me know in the comments!

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