The Chicken Keeping Workshop

On Saturday sixteen people arrived here at Little Pond Farm for a Chicken Keeping Workshop. One came from just two miles up the road, and another from New Jersey – 300 miles away! There were young boys and grandparents and people in-between. Some attendees already had chickens, and some were planning on getting them. Everyone came with a happy enthusiasm, and that mood of good cheer lasted the entire afternoon.

Here Agnes is showing how calm a chicken can be, despite laughter and being in a crowd of on-lookers.

It was hot, so we discussed coop design while standing in the shade.

Siouxsie provided a live example of one of the breeds that I talked about.

I showed how to look for lice.

I checked several hens but didn’t find any. No one seemed too disappointed.

Buffy showed how placid and gentle an old Buff Orpington can be. Lots of people held her.

And then we had the iced tea and cookies as promised, (including cranberry-blueberry shortbread that I made on the spur of the moment to round out the menu) while I continued to expound on such topics as what to keep in a chicken medicine cabinet and what makes a broody hen broody.

After the workshop, people who wanted to stayed awhile longer visited the goats. Pip and Caper said it was about time that they got the attention.

I’ll run another workshop in a month or so. Which is better to schedule it on, Saturday or Sunday?



  1. Looks like you all had fun! And you made shortbread. Amazing! I hope everyone is inspired to keep a flock of hens in their back yards, thanks to your expertise. :)

    • One family that came got chickens after reading Tillie Lays an Egg, and now they have 60! So exciting to meet them.

  2. I’m still SMILING from all the information, fun and friendships made there. It was a wonderful day…thank you Terry & Steve for sharing your home, farm and warmth! Best wishes to you all!

  3. The workshop was even better than I imagined it would be! My family and I were exploring the notion of whether or not it would be wise for us to take the plunge from hencam viewing and henblog following into actual backyard chicken keeping. Your workshop, Terry, was so very informative (and entertaining). We are one step closer to having chickens in the family. Thanks so much.

  4. BTW, both Melissa and Maryann keep blogs that often have news about their own home flocks. They wrote about the workshop, so go here and here to read their perspectives.

  5. We had such a wonderful day! Reilly is still talking about it. It was so nice to see how you have everything set up. I love your compost system! That is on our to do list and I think our girls would just love it. It is one thing to read about chicken keeping in books…but the hands on opportunity you offered was just great, especially since your book inspired us on this journey. Thanks again!

  6. Oh how I wish I didn’t live so far. Looked like a great time. I am a firm believer that people who keep and care for animals are wonderful people and make great friends.

  7. I am so glad you had a good turnout. What a wonderful way for people to be introduced to chickens, or just to gain more valuable information about their flock care. You are a great teacher – and baker, I’m sure:-)

  8. Have you considered publishing your chicken medicine cabinet recommendation list? You’ve referenced individual items as problems have come up, but unless I’m blind, I’ve not found a complete list, which I would be grateful to see as my flock enters middle age. Thanks for all the sage advice.

  9. Do you have something on your site as to what to keep in a chicken medicine cabinet? I could use that info for sure….Wish I was there..looks like a good time was had by all!

  10. Do you have something on your site as to what to keep in a chicken medicine cabinet? I could use that info for sure….Wish I was there..looks like a good time was had by all!

  11. Terry, what a wonderful workshop you offered. I do hope to attend someday and have the pleasure of meeting you and all the wonderful animals at Little Pond Farm. Thank you for your latest post on stocking a medicine cabinet, I do have most items on hand, I do feel it is most important to be prepared. Since we have discovered we now have a banty rooster in our flock, I am going to be looking to you for some advice, my girl’s appear to be in a state of “shock and awe.” Greetings from Maine, Julie.