Mark your calendars, it’s chicken season

February 28, 2008 | By | Comments (2)

by Elizabeth Jardina, Sunset researcher

Are you inspired to start your own flock? You’re in luck: Many feed stores carry chicks in spring. (But, please, don’t succumb to the lure of Easter chicks. Chickens need  coops, proper feed, and years of care. Don’t impulse buy!)


The West is rife with events happening all over to orient new chicken owners. Here are just a few of the many classes and workshops we’re looking forward to in 2008:


Livingscape Nursery holds their ChickenFest with
workshops on coop-building and chicken care and selection,
chicken-related film screenings, and displays of 20 different breeds
March 26-28. (Details are still being finalized.)

Growing Gardens is holding an urban chicken-keeping workshop July 12.

Also sponsored by Growing Gardens: Portland’s 5th annual Tour de Coops
on Saturday, July 26. Tour urban chicken coops all over the city and
chat with experienced chicken owners. In addition to all sorts of
poultry-fabulous events, Growing Gardens also has good chicken resource
information on their website, so click away!

Salt Lake City

Wasatch Community Gardens holds a class on Urban chickens on June 25. And on June 28, they’ll have their own Tour de Coops (a bargain at only $5!)

San Francisco Bay Area

San Francisco’s Garden for the Environment has a class on city chickens (and ducks) March 29.  (Registration required; the cost is $15.)

Sunset’s chicken guru Jody Main will be teaching a class on backyard chickens at Common Ground in Palo Alto on June 21. (Registration is required; the cost is $45.)


Seattle Tilth hosts a class on raising baby chicks March 8, covering everything from chicken health and behavior to poultry law and coop construction. (Registration is required; the cost is $32).

Readers, do you know of others? Leave a comment, and we’ll add ’em!

For our Bay Area readers: The guru of ethical, omnivorous eating, Berkeley’s own Michael Pollan, will be speaking at Stanford University at 7:30 p.m. March 3. If you haven’t read our interview with Pollan in the February issue of Sunset, check it out! And, you can read the full, unedited interview here.

Ruby says: Don’t buy chicks impulsively. We’re cute, but we’re trouble.


  1. หวีรีดผมตรง

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    September 3, 2015 at 3:48 am
  2. Emily Courtney

    Sunset One-Block Diet Team,

    What a wonderful project! Thank you for sharing this experience with us. My understanding is that you are not planning to harvest the chickens for meat, only their eggs. I can understand why, but I ask that you reconsider. If we are going to include meat in our diets, there is no better source that I know of for personal, animal and ecological health than happy chickens raised in our backyards. I think it would be a great gift to your readers if you share with us how to handle the difficult business of bringing home raised chickens to the dinner table.



    March 3, 2008 at 3:46 pm

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