PCC Hobbies: Scott and his photogenic chickens
You never know what you'll overhear in a co-op office. Yesterday, it was Scott, one of our merchandisers, reminding his family over the phone to "turn on the scarecrow."
Turns out it had to do with Scott's chickens. They've been the apple of his eye since he brought them home as chicks around the end of March, fluffy golf balls with beaks and lil' stick legs. Here's Dizzy back in the day (all photos courtesy Scott's daughter, Kylie):
And here's Dizzy now!
That "scarecrow" is a modern-day gardening device that emits bursts of water when a motion sensor notices the chickens have clucked too close to their family garden, lured perhaps by the scent of ripe strawberries on the breeze.
The chicken idea came to roost after Scott's dog Gunner, a Chesapeake Bay Retriever, passed away last winter after 12 years with his family. After that sadness, they thought long and hard about what type of pet would bring them joy. Scott pondered whether a pet could also produce something practical -- like eggs. Soon, the flock was in their life, wandering the yard, nibbling stalks of grass, pecking beneath the sunshine.
"It's nice to go out with a glass of wine and watch them scurry around," Scott said -- a dust bath here, a little piece of strawberry leaf there. Beyond their organic feed, he's learned they like treats of grapes, oatmeal and yogurt. Yogurt? "You put it in a bowl and then stand back. It gets messy." He's watched them squabble over freshly shelled green peas.
They'll begin to lay at about 5 to 7 months of age, depending on the breed (Scott has Araucana and Plymouth Rock, both from his local Grange in Issaquah). He finally found a good home for the roosters after discovering them in his brood.
Apparently, Penny and Sparky like people watching as much as Scott's family enjoys chicken watching.