Cluck Blog

Hart family petitions to let autistic son keep his chickens

We’ve been following the sad story of the Hart family. We don’t know what really happened to little JJ Hart’s chickens, but we certainly feel his pain.

The Harts, who live in DeBary, Florida, got chickens after a doctor suggested that they would benefit two-year-old JJ, who is autistic. Then everything went wrong. First, the municipality told the Harts the chickens were illegal and would have to go. Then this week, four of the birds, including JJ’s favorite, were mysteriously killed, according to WKMG-TV6 in Orlando.

© Neiman Marcus

Need any evidence that backyard chickens are the hottest hobby going? Here’s proof.

If you ever wanted to play Marie Antoinette, now you can order a Heritage Hen Mini Farm from ultra-upscale retailer Nieman Marcus. For a mere $100,000, you get a multilevel dwelling complete with nesting area, "living room", broody room, library (with books), two Heritage Hen Farm pasture grazing trays, waterer, feeder and, of course, a chandelier.

new chicken coop will be home to our Lavender Orpingtons

Today Jeff Jicinsky brought a beautiful new coop that will become the home of our little store flock of Lavender Orpingtons. They're six weeks old now and have their beautiful slate gray feathers, even though they're still babies at heart and are kind of awkward in that baby way.

There seem to be two kinds of visitors to CLUCK the Chicken Store: those who have chickens and those who are thinking about getting chickens. We have seen many of the latter in the past few weeks checking out the coops, looking for ideas and gathering information. We like nothing better than talking chicken with one and all. We also carry some terrific books on chickens, coops and chicken-keeping. But for the basic facts in an easy to access format, we highly recommend the poultry publications from the University of Wisconsin-Extension.

Joy Cardin

If you missed Terese Allen at CLUCK the Chicken Store this weekend, you might have heard her on the Joy Cardin Show on Wisconsin Public Radio Tuesday morning. Joy and Terese discussed the best seasonal foods Wisconsin has to offer, some great restaurants to eat local, and how you can incorporate local food into your culinary creations.

Terese Allen cooks from the Wisconsin Food Journal

Thanks to Terese Allen for sharing her food knowledge - and some yummy Italian cheese curd scrambles - with our visitors at CLUCK the Chicken Store this weekend. It was all part of Paoli's Feast for the Senses festival.

Thanks to our coop builders Chuck Ostrander and Jeff Jicinsky for spending time in the Coop Garden. It seems like every visitor had a question about chicken coops and Chuck and Jeff spent literally hours discussing the finer points of coop design and function. We now have seven chicken coops on display at a wide range of prices so there should be something for everyone .

John Ribble painting St. William's church

Among the attractions in Paoli for the weekend were a group of pleine aire painters who set up their easels on the roadsides and got to work creating masterpieces from the local scenery. What a beautiful day for painting. This photo is of John Ribble, who was working on a version of St. William's church. John is married to Cynthia Quinn, one of the artists who shows her work at CLUCK.

We have to say a word of thanks and praise for Linda Brazill and her wonderously beautiful blog Each Little World. To say Linda is a gardener is to say Mozart liked music. The photos and stories on Linda’s blog illuminate the natural world with unexpected perspectives and knowledgeable insights.

New coop by Jeff Jicinsky

Coops keep flying out of the Coop Garden at CLUCK the Chicken Store. We can't believe the number of people who stop just to look at the coops and kind of kick the tires a bit. Most of them are at least "thinking" of getting chickens, and we know it's only a matter of time before thought turns into action. I think we're going to see a lot of new chicken keepers come spring.


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