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Chickens (and the ribbons) come home to roost for Gardners

July 27, 2012
By Michael Tidemann - Staff Writer , Estherville Daily News

Brother and sister Lucas and Hanna Gardner of the Lincoln Handy Helpers teamed up in Friday's Emmet County Fair to pull in the prizes in the poultry division. Lucas took the grand champion poultry and first in intermediate showmanship while Hanna took first in senior showmanship.

You have to admit it's pretty impressive, to have all that in the same family.

Hanna had four pens and Lucas two pens in this year's fair, with two chickens per pen.

Article Photos

Lucas and Hanna Gardner, brother and sister, had a good day in the poultry judging at Friday’s Emmet County Fair. Lucas took grand champion poultry and first in intermediate showmanship while Hanna took first in senior showmanship.
EDN photo by Michael Tidemann

Raising and showing poultry is something Hanna wanted to do every since she joined 4-H.

"Plus we had chickens," Lucas was quick to add. Both are members of the Lincoln Handy Helpers 4-H Club.

"Before we started we didn't know that you washed chickens," said Hanna.

And they've learned a thing or two about a thing or two about chickens along the way.

Hanna said the judge looks for more of a square than an oval-shaped body for layers. "When they're square, they're supposed to be better layers," she said.

Okay, now. We've seen the restaurant menus for "farm fresh" eggs. So do they really taste fresher?

"They're better tasting for fresh eggs. They have more flavor," Hanna said.

And Lucas said those darker yolks - something the great chefs look for - are from more protein in farm-raised chickens.

So what are the challenges to raising poultry?

Obviously, keeping out predators is key. Hanna said coons and skunks like to eat eggs and they'll also go for the chicks.

So do they see raising poultry as a career?

Lucas says he'd like to continue to breed chickens down the road - but maybe more as a hobby.

Perkins eat your heart out - or maybe yolk, that is.

 
 

 

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