When eggs are hatched into chicks, there is a 50/50 gender split. Every newly hatched laying hen has a brother! Most customers purchase the female chicks – called pullets. Melissa raises the rooster chicks, nicknamed the “McNuggets,” on pasture.
The McNuggets and the breeding poultry flocks live in mobile coops with moveable pens of electric net fencing to facilitate their frequent rotation to fresh irrigated pasture behind where the cattle have grazed. The poultry forage for insects, spread out the cowpies through their scratching, eat food waste from local restaurants, and are supplemented on a mix of Fremont County grown corn, oat and barley feed.
Melissa considers the ecosystem and entire lifecycle of her poultry in her holistic farm management. The eggs from the breeding hens are set in the incubator to hatch into chicks or sold as nutrient-rich table eggs. The pullets, healthy and stress-free from avoiding out-of-state shipment, thrive in egg-laying flocks across Wyoming. The rooster chicks, the McNuggets, happily run the pasture until they “meat” their destiny as flavorful, nutritious food.
In this way, Melissahof produces hearty poultry and holistic eats.