When we moved to our little shack on the prairie- we already had a dog (Sailor), a cat (Kix), and a bunny (Jumper). My dream was to have as many animals as we could afford to take care of with the hopes of them taking care of us in various ways- mostly food:)
Of course, there were SO many other things that would have to be taken care of before we could think of raising some animals- we couldn't even take care of ourselves at this point! Then we got the call. "Hey, would you like to have some chickens?" Someone we were acquainted with was giving away 14 hens and 2 roosters- all from this year's hatching and the hens were laying!
Now what?! They were all the kinds of chickens I had read about and wanted to raise: Rhode Island Reds, Plymouth Rocks, Buff Orpingtons, and Red Sex links. All are well respected for being good dual purpose birds- good for meat and eggs...How could we refuse? And the price was right- free! They also came with a wall-mounted double row nesting box. Of course, we accepted- we just had to go get them.
We were so excited, we drove out to where they were staying just to get to see them and instantly fell in love with these chickens! How does one, exactly, fall in love with a chicken at first sight? I'm sure I don't know, but we did.
The next day when I returned home from work, my husband had created what I affectionately called 'The Chicken Castle.' He had mounted the nest box on the wall in our old barn, reinforced the fence around the corral, and even built a door for us to get in and out of, complete with a wire covered window. And voila, the chicken coop was more sound than the house we were going to live in.