Meet Mary Ann from My Pet Chicken! We call the employees of My Pet Chicken “Peeps!” My Pet Chicken is very unique in that all of the staff are poultry farmers themselves, so we bring a wealth of experience and wisdom. Here’s your chance to see how Crazy Chicken People became. In this Meet the Peeps blog series, we introduce you to Mary Ann. I’ve interacted with her over the phone, email…now it’s time to “meet” her.
Meet Mary Ann – Principal Supervisor
1. How long have you been part of the MPC family? what is your location
I’ve been an MPC customer since 2009 and started working at MPC in 2010. I started as a customer service representative in our telephone department, and am now the lead supervisor.
2. What is your hometown and your favorite part of living there?
I was born and raised in Arizona but moved to Grapevine, Texas several years ago. While living in Texas, I love that the winters here are cold enough that I can wear long sleeves, and I also love the fall colors of the oak trees.
3. How long have you been a chicken keeper?
I started raising chickens in 2009 and used the My Pet Chicken website to select the breeds we wanted.
4. What was your first breed(s) of chicken?
Barred Rock, White Leghorn, Buff Orpington, Easter Eggers, and Black Star.
5. How many chickens do you have? (Real numbers…not what we tell our family members!)
Back in Arizona, I kept up to 25 chickens (I counted bantams as ½ chicken to keep the number down!), but here in Texas, where we now have a smaller backyard, we currently have 6; 2 beautiful Swedish Flower Hens, 1 Blue Maran Coco Coco, 1 Red Star, 1 Blue Easter Egg, and 1 White and Gray Easter Egg.
6. Do you have any other animals besides chickens? If so, what and how much do you have?
Now that we have an empty nest and no more horse property, we have fewer pets than before – we currently have 1 dog, 6 chickens and a small goldfish pond.
7. What is your favorite breed of chicken? why?
I have a few favorites: Barred Rocks and Red Stars (the mood and layers of great eggs), Easter Eggers or Ameraucanas of any kind (for the color of the eggs and usually also have a good temper), and Marans (for the darker eggs). My favorite Marans from MPC were Blue Copper Marans (large, fluffy, and laid dark eggs), but I recently discovered that Blue Cuckoo Marans are very friendly and lovely too.
8. What is your favorite part of keeping chickens?
Beautiful eggs! No matter how long my hen has been laying eggs, collecting eggs and enjoying the different colors every day is a pleasant surprise. I also enjoy watching the chickens outside in the yard – it’s so peaceful watching the beautiful birds enjoying their free time.
9. What is the best pro tip for a novice chicken breeder?
Diatomaceous Earth and First Saturday Lime application in the barn, nest boxes, and also during summer runs helps with cleaning and insect control.
10. What is your favorite product for preserving chicken and why?
The Sweeter Heater is a new favorite. Even though I’m in a fairly warm climate when our temps suddenly drop into the teens or twenties, I’m thankful that we now have a safe option to keep our chickens more comfortable in temperatures below freezing.
11. What is your favorite chicken-themed quote or joke?
“Chicken Chicken” Chicken math is a thing – I’d have a lot more chicken if I had the room.
Mary Ann background Coop
It took me a while to convince my husband that chickens were a good idea, but he finally agreed and built me a coop out of an old gazebo that was on the property when we bought it. Although the gazebo already had a wood floor (which we covered with linoleum), framing, and shingle roof, my husband put up the walls, windows, and door, covered the holes at the top with tarp, and built a run from scratch—and I love my luck!