Thursday, December 30, 2010

Why I want Dominique chickens and other Poultry Ponderings

WARNING!!!  Ascending soap box.....

So my Dominique (aka Dominiker) roosters are not Dominique roosters.  They are crosses.  I'm not too disappointed because they will still make tasty dinners.  I would like to share with you why I want Dominique chickens though.  Dominique's are one of the oldest American breeds and they were almost, and still could become extinct.  Many heritage breeds are in danger of becoming extinct.  Why?  Simply because they are a heritage breed.  They grow slow, and this particular breed doesn't lay the most eggs in a year, they don't produce the biggest meat yield and they aren't all that great at being confined.  They do however produce consistent quantity of quality eggs and grow to an adequate size for processing.  They also do all this on a minimum amount of feed, thriving on the riches of the lands around them.  You see, for the big egg producer who wants to get as many eggs as possible in the shortest amount of time, Dominiques just won't do.  For the big poultry producers who want their chickens to grow so fast that by the age of 6 weeks their legs will no longer support them, Dominique's, and other heritage breeds won't do.  So in the heat of the industrial age when more is more and faster is better the Dominique, along with many other heritage breeds, fell by the wayside while new production breeds took their place.  Dominiques are not the breed for factory mass production, but they are perfect for a small farm that wants to provide eggs and meat for their family and possibly a few friends.  They are just right to live off the land.  America has lost so much in the last century.  A frightening loss is the ability for individuals to sustain themselves.  This is mimicked in industry with their unsustainable and extreme breeding practices.  My choice of Dominiques is a stand against more loss of American Heritage and the very independent spirit which began this country.

For more information on endangered Heritage breeds, you can visit

Descending soap box....

My great grandmother, we called her grandmother with the chickens, raised Dominiques.  I didn't know this until I was talking to my grandmother about chickens and she began describing the different kinds they had as kids.  I"m so honored to know that the breed I'm going to raise has roots in my past.  I now know why of all the breeds on the list, this one stuck out.  Somewhere, deep in memory, I can see the speckled chickens in my great grandmothers yard, defining the same spirit of independence and sustainability firmly rooted in her home.

No comments:

Post a Comment