Sunday, May 13, 2012

Surviving the Zombie Pandemic with Your Chickens

Because it's coming, that's why. The CDC even says so.
I had a startling realization today... My flock, which I took such care in building is NOT going to survive the Zombie Apocalypse. Yeah, you read that right. They're just not cut out for it.

Most chicken addicts read about the pros and cons of each breed while buildng up their flock and some (like me) even have a a wish list. Some folks are looking for good layers, cold or heat tolerant, docile, or broody hens. But have you ever taken into account what traits will be important during the upcoming Zombie Apocalypse?

View from my back deck
First of all, let's just get this out of the way: The Zombie Apocalypse is a real threat. The Center for Disease Control has even assigned a Task Force to study the threat and ready the American public. They are calling it the Zombie Pandemic and even provide a list of things to have on hand in case the Pandemic actually happens. They list water, medication, canned food; however, I think they overlooked the obvious - chickens.
*credit. image from CDC zombie pandemic site. no really. it is.
This is where my realization happened. My backyard flock did not reveal ONE chicken that met the following criteria I devised as a zombie survival standard.  
  1. They should be good foragers. It's not like you can just run down to Tractor Supply for laying feed during the Zombie Pandemic. The zombies will be everywhere.
  2. The hens should be good layers, as food sources will be scarce. Eggs are an excellent source of protein, EFAs, and are loaded with nutrients. Besides, can you imagine a Pandemic without omelettes or a little cake here and there? I can't!
  3. They must be hardy and both heat and cold tolerant. Living conditions during the pandemic are unknown and very hard to plan for. The one thing that is clear, however, is that you will have to keep moving to survive the zombie raids. These slow moving predators feed on brains and travel in packs. Trust me. I've seen movies. Plan to be move around a lot.
  4. Hens should be broody, but not too broody. If they are too broody, they may want to sit, hide their eggs, or not travel with you. But if they aren't broody at all, you cannot replenish your flock if the Pandemic drags on.
Buffy (Buff Orp)  may be slothly, but we enjoy her sweet gluttonous demeanor.
That doesn't seem like a lot to ask for, does it? In assessing my flock, however, no bird is a perfect fit. My Buff Orpingtons are too slothly and lazy and too much food to product 3-5 eggs per week. My Bantums are broody, but too broody. They would not move well with me as I'm moving to avoid the Zombies. My Rhode Island Reds are good on all but one category; they would not hatch eggs to replenish the flock. But I love them all.

Each have their own distinct personality and my husband and I enjoy watching the soap opera that rages on in our back yard. In fact, he fancies Laced Wyandottes so much that I got him the last two in Jackson County for our upcoming anniversary.

Week old Wyandotte see completely oblivious to pending danger of Zombies.
Isn't she cute? I don't think I'll tell her about the upcoming Pandemic until she's older...

So what Is the best chicken to have on hand when the dead start roaming the Earth? I've read tons of books and I googled it (what did we do before google???), and they all point to the regal and hardy Welsummer.

Guess what just got added to my chicken wish list!

I've taken a lot of care in building my flock and they give us joy, entertainment, love, and yummy organic eggs. Although I"m changing my wish list a little, I wouldn't trade our girls (and roos) for anything. And with that, I will leave you with some expert advice in surviving the Zombie Epidemic.



Anonymous said...

We can win this!

Danica said...

Finally, someone else that's taking the Zombie Apocalypse seriously!!! My car is an official Zombie Hunter Vehicle. It's clearly marked. Be on the look-out for it when the ZA happens. We. Are. Your. Heroes!