(Lori and her gentle Azure roo)
How long have you been keeping chickens?
I've been keeping chickens for 6 wonderful years. It was by accident and the history behind it is interesting.
I walked my clients two schnauzer’s past this lady’s house in Buckhead every day. Her gorgeous house is literally across the street from the Swan Coach House. One day she stopped me and asked, “Do you care for chickens?” Wait, What?! I have always dreamed of caring for chickens! I enthusiastically said YES!
Soon after that she introduced me to her lovely flock of 8 fluffy Buff Orpingtons. She became a regular client and I enjoyed learning about and caring for her hens. Her magnificent coop was designed by her and it looked like something you would see in a Martha Stewart magazine.
(Lori holding a hen for the first time)
One day she asked me if I would be interested in having her first coop that was no longer being used. Well, now I had a decision to make. Was this the moment that I will decide to have my very own chickens? It was an easy choice. The next thing I know, there was a caravan of people trying to get her coop to my house!
That spring, I ordered my very first Buff Orpington chicks, and from that batch of chicks came the famously named Tater Tot.
(TaterTot - the Buff Orpington hen)
What is your favorite thing about keeping chickens?
It is so hard to pin point just one thing, however, one favorite of mine is the close bond I have with each one of them. The bond starts when they are days old and with the consistent handling of and caring for them, over time they learn to trust you. I’ve learned that each one has their own unique personality. No matter what kind of day I am having, they immediately cheer me up with their excited chatter to see me, and their desire to be near and around me like little puppies.
Another favorite of mine is the miracle of life. Tater Tot became broody one spring and I said, “ok girl you wanna be a momma?”. So I ordered fertilized Swedish Flower eggs and set them in front of her, and wouldn’t you know it she accepted them right away! Twenty-one days later, two tiny babies had hatched out and emerged out from under her wing. It was one of the most beautiful sights to see. Tater was such a good mother. Watching her raise and teach her young chicks was something really special to witness.
(Lori holding one of her chicks)
How many chickens do you have?
After my beloved hen Tater Tot passed away, I was left with one chicken, Gladys. I ordered 6 new baby chicks so that Gladys wouldn’t be lonely. After I got home from picking them up from the post office, I eagerly opened the chick box. One by one I counted them as I placed them in their new home. Yep! Great, there are 6 beautiful healthy chicks! Oh, wait….oh my, I am still counting…seven, eight, nine! It was like one of those crazy clown cars, they just kept coming. Oh boy, 10! All I was thinking was that my husband is going to freak out. I couldn’t help by laugh at the situation. What am I gonna do with 10, no wait 11 chickens?! You got it, my wonderful husband built me a brand new coop, Cluckingham Palace!
(The beautiful Cluckingham palace)
What is your favorite product from CityChick that helps with your flock?
I can’t say I have a favorite product because all of Heath’s products are superb! Because of Heath and his business, I have happy healthy chickens. If I had to pick one, it would be his line of good quality treats. When my chickens hear me shaking the bag, they stop whatever they are doing and come running!
What advice would you give to any new chicken keeper?
Advice I would give any new chicken keeper is have a first aid kit handy and search out the nearest vet that sees chickens before any problems arise. Also, have some knowledge of the most common chicken illnesses so that you won’t be caught off guard and can manage it as soon as you can. I had a beautiful Buff Orpington, Daphney, that passed away because she became egg bound. I had never heard of that happening to a chicken before and had I known that, I could have taken the necessary steps to save her.
(Lori and her husband Tillis - urban farmers extraordinaire!)
Tell us about your rare breeds and why did you pick them?
I have Sage Eggers, Azures, Heritage Welsummers and one splash Swedish Isbar. I gotta say that all these hens and roos are very healthy, vibrant and have such sweet and kind temperaments.
The Welsummers are good to have in your flock because they are intelligent and the roosters will alert your hens if they are in danger. Their eggs have large exaggerated speckling and interesting bloom, sometimes causing their eggs to look pink or purple. The Sage Eggers lay beautiful green speckled eggs. They are excellent foragers, layers, predator wise and intelligent. The Azures will reveal its gender upon hatch so they can guarantee females! They have adorable fluffy poofs on top of their heads. I wanted this breed for their stunning blue eggs.
(Lori's beautiful Swedish Isbar hen and Azure rooster)
Finally, the rare and expensive Swedish Isbar. My spectacular baby hen, who my husband has named Little Girl, boasts bold black splash markings that are dispersed throughout her blue feathers. She has black soulful eyes. She is smaller than the other females in my flock. She catches your eye immediately. I chose this breed because this is the only pure breed chicken that lays a naturally green tinted egg. This is also the only breed that has the ability to put purple speckles over the top of their green eggs. Wow, this little gem of a hen has captured my heart!
Thank you to Lori for sharing your amazing coop with the backyard chicken community! You can check out her pet sitting business at:
Want to be featured in an upcoming CityChick chicken keeper spotlight? Send an email to Email@CityChickAtl about your chicken keeping experience!