Over the summer I have been posting news of one Black Jack resident's fight to keep his chicken breeding program.
Guy Niere, long-time Black Jack resident whose family has kept chickens there for over 100 years, was featured in the Post Dispatch in an article focusing on the rise of urban and sustainable agricultre that has been sweeping the nation. The article also discussed his preservation breeding program of rare Black Penedesenca chickens, from Catalonia, Spain. There are only eight breeders in the country, whose chickens are all hatched from 13 of 80 original eggs imported to the USA. These birds are celebrated in their native country for their dark brown eggs and for the quality of their meat.
Guy has a small breeding population and is broadening the genetic diversity and improving the lines of this rare breed, which was almost extinct in the 1980's. His breeding code closely follows the Spanish Government and Catalonia University, which are also working to preserve this cultural icon.
Guy has represented himself well in his generous education efforts to the council, and they have appreciated and accepted his comments in return. Many of us from neighbouring communities have also participated with our efforts to spread the word about the importance of local, urban/backyard agriculture, and to represent a local contingent of a national movement that has swept the nation for over a decade.
At the last meeting, Tuesday, August 7th, we were informed that the final decision would not be on the agenda until late September. However, due to the cooperative efforts between the representative counsel of Black Jack and the chicken keeping community, it is hoped that a positive and acceptable solution is being crafted.
Dorene and her clucks