The Waterpod™ chick quartet (Rizzo, Marble, Bonsai and Gilly) have lunch with Mira Hunter. On the menu is a wonderful mixture of oats, bulgur, flax, garden greens, hemp seeds, crushed oyster shells, compost, corn, buckwheat sprouts and sunflower seeds. The hens are a breed called Sex Link (unfortunate, we know), which refers to the fact that they are bred to be different colors depending on gender when hatched. They are champion mutts, proficient layers, very hardy and local.
We had originally received an overwhelming majority of votes for Ameraucana, Araucana, Rumpless Araucana or Easter Egger breeds which produce colored shelled eggs, but were unable to find any mature hens for Waterpod™. These lovely ladies were raised locally in upstate New York at Awesome Farms. Rizzo is the feisty one and Marble is the biggest, Bonsai is a bit cautious and Gilly is Gilly. Carissa Carman, our Waterpod™ Living Systems Director and Designer, named Rizzo after the tough girl in Grease. The other ladies were named after words stenciled on the crates that were repurposed to make the coop: Marble, Bonsai and Fragile (Gilly - though we also like to think that she is named after our favorite New York Coast Guard CDR Brian Gilda). Artist Geneviève Rousseau built their nesting box, Smithsonian Chicken Coop.
They love to eat cherries, watermelon and anything green and leafy, and on hot days they enjoy nesting in a box of hay in the shade under the coop. Carissa made them a little wooden trough that we put their feed into, though they like to scratch it out of the hay that covers the chicken run floor as well. The coop is lined with wood shavings from a friend's wood working shop in New York, and we clean it every morning. Though they usually lay eggs during the night in the top double nesting box of the hen house, on the day that this video was shot, someone laid an egg in the hay.