By now you probably have realized that I have a bit of a chicken obsession. I raise several breeds of chickens, and I can't seem to stop adding more. I've recently become fascinated with a rare meatbird called American Bresse (rhymes with dress). The Bresse chicken hails from eastern France and is considered by food connoisseurs to be the most exquisite tasting chicken in the world. They have become a French (and American, now) patriotic symbol due to their bright red combs, strikingly white feathers, and slate blue feet. France is so proud of them that they have placed them under protective law and very few are available outside of their native region. However, there are a few flocks that have recently made it to the United States. They were renamed American Bresse to distinguish them from the French line, and I've managed to get my hands on a pair of them. My plan is to build a flock and eventually use them as my main line of meatbirds. I'll be able to raise them humanely, allowing them to free-range, eat from the garden, and drink from the rain barrels. I even plan to grow some crops specifically to feed them! I can't wait to see how it all turns out. I'm still quite a ways from seeing all this come into fruition, but a girl can dream. I'll let you know how it goes.
I love farm animals. There are plenty of good reasons for this: they provide food, income, fertilizer, pest and weed control...they can even till my garden for me! But what I really love is having odd farm animals just wandering around. I like to just sit and watch them happily scratch, root, or strut about--doing whatever comes natural to them. Sometimes it gets a little crazy, but they're such a big part of the homestead equation, I can't imagine not having them.