Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Chicken Coop Basics Rescheduled for Sept. 9, 2020

We are rescheduling this online class one more time… thanks for your patience!  The online Coop class covers everything you need to know about chicken coops. Learn the essential components of a coop, what construction materials to use, and examples of different coop styles. Learn how to design and build your own Hen Hilton! Co-hosted by Home to Roost and the Rebuilding Exchange.  

Register Here for this online class, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 7:00 – 9:00pm.

Chicken found in Lincoln Marsh in Wheaton, IL

I got a call on Aug. 20 about a chicken on the loose in the Lincoln Marsh Natural Area in Wheaton. I was able to track her down near the Church of the Resurrection. The bird is a juvenile buff orpington hen. If she’s yours, contact me. If I can’t locate her owner, I’ll rehome her.


Mayflower the hen is on the mend

Laura in Oak Park contacted me via email at the end of July about a very sick hen named Mayflower. Laura wasn’t sure if the bird was going to make it: she was sleepy, lying down a lot, and drinking a lot of water – and perching on top of the waterer, which was very odd!

Not being well versed in chicken health issues, Laura wanted some advice from an expert. “I do need some guidance on caring for sick chickens because I feel like I am just sort of winging it,” she wrote to me.

I asked Laura to separate Mayflower from the other hens and put her in a cool, dark place in a box or carrier until I could make an emergency visit.

“It’s funny–the things you say you’ll never do,” Laura said. Not bringing chickens indoors was one of her rules.  But she made an exception for the hen, who means a lot to the family. “Chickens are like pets for my 13-year-old daughter–she loves them,” Laura told me.

I stopped by her home and examined Mayflower, who was indeed doing poorly. Her posture was droopy and her eyes were partially closed. She had lost some weight as well. Her droppings were runny and green. I assessed the health of her flockmates and showed Laura and her daughter Sadie how to do a physical check on the chickens; examined the coop, droppings, and the run; and asked Laura about the overall health of the flock and any observations she’d made since Mayflower got sick.

Based on my observations, my guess was that Mayflower had an intestinal infection or parasites. I recommended that Laura take Mayflower to an avian vet as soon as possible.

Laura saw Dr. Kline at Niles Animal Hospital. “The vet told me if we hadn’t brought her in, she wouldn’t have made it through the weekend, so we are really glad Jen could come! She’s very resourceful,” Laura said.

After two weeks of treatment and TLC from Laura’s daughter Sadie, Mayflower recovered from her bacterial infection and was able to rejoin the other hens in the outdoor coop. I advised Laura on how to clean up the droppings on Mayflower’s feathers, and she gave the lucky hen a mini-spa day, washing up her back end and drying her with the hair dryer! A happy ending!

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Attention Clients: Please Review Home to Roost’s Services!

I am always looking for feedback from my clients. If you have used my chicken consulting services recently, please consider writing a recommendation and posting to my new Facebook Business Page. Thank you very much for your feedback!

Register Now for the Chicken Health Virtual Workshop on Aug. 17, 2020!

Learn about the common health issues chickens face and how you can keep your flock healthy during the Chicken Health Virtual Workshop, Monday, Aug. 17 at 6:30pm.

Register Here for this online class, co-hosted by Home to Roost and the Rebuilding Exchange.

Please note there is a prerequisite: the Basics of Chicken-Keeping class. Haven’t taken this class yet? No problem! You can purchase a recording of this class when you register for the Chicken Health workshop.

Register Now for the Chicken Coop Basics Virtual Workshop on Aug. 11, 2020!

Learn the essential components of a safe and comfortable coop in my “Chicken Coop Basics Virtual Workshop” on Tuesday, Aug. 11 at 6:30pm!  Register Here for this online workshop, co-hosted by Home to Roost and the Rebuilding Exchange.

Please note there is a prerequisite: the Basics of Chicken-Keeping class. If you haven’t taken this class yet, no worries! You can purchase a recording of this class when you register for Chicken Coop Basics.


Co-Owner of The Feed Store injured in accident

We were very sorry to learn that Brooke Ann Bestwina, one of the owners of The Feed Store in Summit, IL, was badly injured in a car/scooter accident earlier this month (see article in Desplaines Valley News). We are wishing her the best and hope she will be back at the store soon!

Many of you are patrons of The Feed Store. Anyone who wants to send get well wishes can send them to The Feed Store, 5408 S. Harlem Ave. Summit IL 60501.

Date Change: Chicken Coop Basics moved to Aug. 11, 2020

The Chicken Coop Basics Virtual Workshop, originally scheduled for July 25, has been moved to Tuesday, Aug. 11 from 6:30 to 8:30pm. We apologize for any inconvenience and hope to see you on the new date/time! Register Here for this online class, co-hosted by Home to Roost and the Rebuilding Exchange.

Online Class: Basic Backyard Chicken Keeping, June 27, 2020

Home to Roost is pairing with Mokena Public Library to offer a virtual workshop on basic chicken keeping on Sat., June 27 from 12:30 – 2:30 pm. The workshop is open to all. Click here for more information and to register.

The Forgotten History of Chickens — Fascinating Facts from The History Guy



A client told us about this fascinating video, that goes all the way back to the dawn of chicken domestication to describe what happened when chickens first threw in their lot with humanity. As it turns out, this humble bird has had a huge influence on language, biology and human history!

According to the History Guy, AKA Lance Geiger, chickens were domesticated in ancient times, not for food or eggs, but for another reason. Can you guess what it might be?

Did you know that the chicken is the most numerous bird species on Earth? Guess how many of them there were in 2016. Hint: enough for every man, woman and child on Earth to have more than one. So if you raise chickens, you are in good company!

More astounding statistics from this video: In 2015, Americans ate an average of 92 pounds of chicken per person! In fact, if we as a nation eat any more chicken, we might begin to cluck. :^)

The History Guy goes on to give the history behind various chicken-related words and sayings: cockpit, cock of the walk, and cock-and-bull story, to name just a few. Fun stuff, and a great way to learn about the chicken’s crucial role in the development of language, biology and human history!