Whew, it has certainly been a busy spring! We've attended 3 swaps so far this year, and have had a fantastic time. One the biggest sales was the Gilmanor Farm sale, which took place on May 7th under beautiful blue skies. My sister and her husband came down for the event, and by 7am we were set up and selling. I was pleasantly surprised to see the volume of sellers there, some with goats, mini horses, kittens, and of course some amazing and rare breeds of chickens. Luckily I was able to restrain myself and only came home with 2 3-week old stunning partridge cochin chicks (although some beautiful seal-point siamese kittens called to me most of the day!) I sold most of what I brought to sell and really enjoyed telling people about my birds and the fun qualities of some of the breeds I had available. I also brought some of my handmade egg ornaments, blown from my own chicken's eggs. They were a hit! I will certainly continue to bring these to future swaps. At the sale I was able to have a few minutes with Joel Gilman, who raises some of the best Partridge Rocks in the country. I was able to get a few chicks from him, which will be added to my 2 other lines to hopefully have a great group of birds for the 2012 season.
I have only 2 hatches left in the incubators, the first will be some lovely silver penciled rocks and lavender orpingtons, and a week later more of the fabulous barred olive eggers. The breeds we plan to develop and work on over the 2011 to 2012 season are:
• Barred Olive Eggers
• Welsummers (Whitmore, Barber lines)
• Silver Penciled Rocks (Adamson Acres)
• Partridge Rocks (Joel Gilman and others)
• Buff Orpingtons (Hink JC, Green Family Farms, and Clevenger/Coulter)
• Lavender Orpingtons (Hink JC)
• Wheaten/Blue Wheaten Ameraucanas (Hodges Farms, Gary Ramey, John Blehm)
• Black Copper Marans (Davis, Jeane, and Presley lines)
• Exchequer Leghorn (Kat LaDue)
• Marraduna Basque (Skyline Farms)
I have a lovely Silver Ameraucana pullet from John Blehm's line that I may be finding a cockerel for later this fall in hopes to add to my silver numbers, but this is yet to be determined.
It has been a lot of hard work finding the right breeders around the country to obtain the eggs I was wanting, but it was well worth it. I am very proud of my stock and can't wait to see how they grow into adults.
The next swap we will be attending is the CFC Farm Store in Caroline on July 2nd.