Meet Our Newest Flock Members!

On March 1st we went to Houlton Maine for an emergency chick run…

Yes, you read that right. We drove an 80 mile round trip Just To Buy Baby Chickens.

There are people out there that will understand my excitement at finding out that Tractor Supply had a bantam bin that had just arrived that morning- meaning plenty of chances to snag some silkies and Cochins!

They also had ducks, Rhode Island reds, Blue Plymouth Rocks, light Brahmas, and a mixed bag of orpingtons.

So we instructed the very nice lady to grab us four feather footed bantams, and to try for two blue Plymouth rocks and two lavender orpingtons.

We came home with 2 blonde silkies, 2 more feather footed bantams we were hoping were Cochins, and 2 blue and 2 lavender chicks.

Unfortunately, the little blonde cochin that I immediately fell in love with passed on her third day. She had bruising on her abdomen, so I believe she was destined to pass. I’m glad we gave her a warm, dry, less crowded home for the few days we had her.

As you can see in this photo, she was not very peppy- kinda slow eyed and tired looking.

RIP Thumbalina.

(On a side note: we’ve had some farm deaths this winter with the death of Thelma the Welsummer, Petunia the Alpaca and now Thumbalina the Cochin. Our almost 4 year old, is actually dealing with this quite well. When I explained to her about Thumbalina(because she’s got a great memory, there was no fooling her about 8 chicks mysteriously becoming 7), she understood and agreed we had to bury her. When she found out that it was in the trash, at first she was horrified, but when I simply explained to her that we couldn’t bury her outside with 4 feet of snow on the ground, she agreed. She insisted on saying goodbye to “Thumbalina Chickie” and we put her in a box, and put the box in the trash. Then, Izzy announced that she was going to draw Thumbalina a picture and proceeded to do just that. Which she very proudly put it in the trash to “be with Thumbalina”.)

Here we are now, a little over three weeks later with 7 very healthy chicks getting ready to go into their larger brooder in the shed.

Without further ado-


Miley- lavender Orpington with a slightly wonky comb and an attitude.

Iris- Blue Orpington(?) with a quiet demeanor and cool white slash under one eye. Very friendly.

Struggle- as in I was struggling with a name for this lavender Orpington… and it just stuck. She’s a sweetie – but she’s kinda pushed around a little too.

Patsy- a Blue Plymouth Rock that I couldn’t help but name after one of the old great country artists. Also very friendly and curious, this breed is a sex link so she’s my one guarantee. I think. 🤷‍♀️

I do have a good feeling about the Orpingtons tho, they were labeled as sexed pullets, so here’s hoping.

Next are our completely no idea bantams-

Mrs. Shirley Jones- what I formerly believed was a partridge bantam Cochin, is more likely a Mille de Fleur. She has the most impressive feathered feet of the bunch. Super friendly she straight up flies up my arm.

Sadie- silkie number one, named by Izzy which is amazing because I’m always asking her what she wants to name things and her usual replies are “cat” or “happy”. She’s a little shy, but doesn’t hesitate to run back to me instead of enjoying her photo shoot time.

Phyllis Gillis – silkie number two, she has six toes on one of her feet! She’s definitely the more adventurous of the two silkies. She seems to enjoy having her photo taken and exploring the new areas where we set up.

And in writing this blog, it occurs to me that I haven’t done one of these for the rest of the flock. I guess I know what my homework is.

Until next time, have a wicked good day.


Published by gillisgardensllc

This is the official website for Gillis Gardens, LLC. Gillis Gardens is a farm, run by myself and my wonderful husband. We believe in biodiversity, organic growing methods and doing things ourselves. I knit, crochet, make jewelry and sew. MrGillis builds, doing everything from our plumbing to our mechanical to our renovations. We are both active members of our little community. We both take care of the plants and animals. He weeds, I harvest. He spreads manure, I plant. We raise multiple breeds of chickens for eggs and meat. We have a herd of Alpacas that we shear every year for their beautiful fiber, which we then have milled into ultra luxurious yarn. We make our own maple syrup, preserves and pickles. We raise bees for honey and herbs for medicine. We also raise pigs for meat and fun. We are the parents of two young children, and consider that our most important job. Follow our adventures here and also on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.

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