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Feeling the Pull

I'm once again wishing for chickens. I'd like four or five, and a rooster. We're zoned for it, but it would take some doing to make them easily accessible and safe from the local carnivores.

I read an interesting article on PETA that made some good points but totally lost me as far as PETA goes. The woman who founded PETA thinks that "purebred human babies" are a vanity just like purebred dogs. I can't fathom what she means by that. She also thinks that racing Formula 1 cars is great, while eating meat is horrible. Obviously the planet as a living thing does not enter into PETA's mindset.

But it did have an entire section on what's done to chickens in order to make eggs, and it's not nice. Most chickens never see the light of day in their entire 6-week lives, living in bunkers that reek of the smell of their own wastes. Egg-producing chickens are treated even worse, starved to get them to lay more. Frankly, that's not a bad cycle to step out of. pirateguillermo and I talked about things we do to interrupt the waste stream (buying things that have less packaging, recycling and reusing everything possible including our household food scraps). I think this is much the same thing.

I like eggs, and I like chicken. I'm more than willing to take the responsibility of killing, cleaning and cooking my own food, but it would be nice to know that while it was alive, it had an actual life with sunshine and comfort and company.



Aug. 16th, 2005 09:08 pm (UTC)
Free range eggs? How far can an egg go on its own? ;)

So, imagine how much better eggs from free-range hens would taste if they were laid that morning?

And chickens are cute. Cuter than dogs.
Aug. 16th, 2005 09:40 pm (UTC)
I grew up feeding the chickens and gathering the eggs. I even know how to clean and pluck them.
Aug. 16th, 2005 09:50 pm (UTC)
Now you're cleaning and plucking the free-range eggs. These are some eggs you've got going on.

Seriously, that's something I need to learn. I could certainly dissect a chicken and tell you what its organs are and whether it was sick when it was alive, but as for getting all the little bitty feathers off - I have not the first clue.

I figured I'd do what everyone does - hang out at the feed store asking people questions.
Aug. 22nd, 2005 12:32 am (UTC)
My first pet was a chicken - an Americauna named Babe who laid blue-green eggs.

We raised chickens for both meat and eggs when I was a kid, and I remember well having to pluck them. Ick. If I remember correctly, we dipped the carcass in boiling water (or maybe it was just hot, or maybe it was just water...my dad would remember) and just pulled the feathers off....I'd think these days, with everyone eating skinless, it would be easier to just, well, skin them. I've seen pigs done both ways - skinned, or dipped in hot water and "de-haired" with a scraper thingie.

You probably want more than 3 or 4 though. You can order chickens by breed and sex through Murray McMurray (it was a catlog in my day, though they probably have a website by now...yup, it's here.) They send you day-old chicks through the mail. Very cool.
Aug. 22nd, 2005 03:48 am (UTC)
Actually, that's the very website I've been looking at for Buff Brahmas. They're supposed to be smart and gentle. For chickens.