Two members of the Grayville FFA members have been raising chickens behind the high school as a part of their immersion-type Supervised Agricultural Experience.

Isaac Rankin and Kadyn Cox, both sophomores at Grayville Junior/Senior High School, plunged into raising chicken last school year.

They started with just five chickens in January 2020 and nurtured them throughout the initial stages of the COVID pandemic and summer. In July, they added six more chickens to their flock. They currently have 10 chickens, as a raccoon did manage to get in the run, according to Isaac.

They have a couple Rhode Island Reds, a couple Isa Browns and a few others they are still trying to identify. Isaac and Kadyn both mentioned that the ones they raised from chicks were much more people-friendly, but the ones they bought fully grown are seeming to come around.

They shared that the coop and run had been built during the last school year, and their plan is to continue raising the chickens through graduation.

Michaela Greathouse, their FFA advisor, stated, “I personally am so proud of these boys for stepping up and getting this project started.” 

She explained that the is always emphasizing the SAE projects in class and the myriad of opportunities they can provide. She noted, “…but not a lot of the students take the incentive to start a business with animals since so many of my students are non-traditional ag students and have never been around farm livestock.”

This was absolutely the case for Isaac and Kadyn. They had no previous experience with chickens, and until recently, neither had chickens at home - Kadyn explained that his mother now has chickens. It’s possible she made that decision because he began raising them as a part of his dedication to FFA, Kadyn considered. But he did emphasize that she thought the chickens were cute, and that may have also been the main factor.

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