There’s new birds at the Bodeker Coop this week. We bought a quartet (1 rooster + 3 hens) of chickens this past Saturday for Merritt to show as a 4H Poultry project this summer (his current chickens are not working out for various reasons). A neighbor down the road has been breeding Iowa Blue chickens for about three years in a bid to help restore the breed back to a sustainable population (along with several other breeders in and around Iowa). The Iowa Blue chicken almost went extinct by the mid-1980s, but luckily one of the founders of Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, Iowa began working to bring the breed back from just one remaining flock. The Iowa Blue dates back to the early 1920s in Northeast Iowa. It is a very hardy breed–withstands both the horrible high humidity levels of our summers & the sub-zero windchills of our winters rather easily. Iowa Blues are quite large chickens, good layers, & the hens, I’ve read, can be extremely broody. Our three hens are not quite laying yet, but should be soon. We’ve got them sequestered for now away from our other chickens for both their safety & the health of our flock.
I think they’re quite lovely. We named the hens varying forms of the color blue–we’ve got Periwinkle, Celeste, & Sapphire. Sapphire is June’s chicken & she chose the name from a list of blue color names.
June & Sapphire. She’s very excited to have another chicken to call her own.
I thought these seeds were pretty hanging in our woods. The pods almost sparkled.
Prairie the cat snoozing in the garage.
On our walk back from the bus stop yesterday we found another blue bird…an Eastern Bluebird! There are actually quite a few bluebirds wintering in Iowa every year, but this is the first one in our yard this year.
For more information on the Iowa Blue chicken, check out this pdf book by Curt Burroughs & courtesy of the Iowa Blue Chicken Club.