The Rainbow Eggs Of South Wildwood Urban Homestead

Farm founder Stephanie Webb reveals all about how egg color genetics work, as well as why she loves getting rainbow eggs, at her Dallas-based venture.

by Phillip Mlynar
PHOTO: South Wildwood Urban Homestead

South Wildwood is an urban homestead that houses chickens with a talent for producing rainbow eggs. The Dallas-situated venture is the brainchild of Stephanie Webb, who remembers her grandfather always having a chicken catalog around the house while she was growing up.

“They had a small little chicken house that they kept here in Dallas that was still here when we moved here in 2015,” Webb recalls. “My husband integrated my papaw’s nesting boxes into the coop he built. It’s pretty special.”

We spoke to Webb about the rewarding nature of raising chickens and how being around poultry can be a stress reliever. We also got into how egg color genetics work.

Tending to Urban Chickens

What about caring for chickens on a daily basis? Webb says that “it’s as demanding as you make it be.”

She adds that when working in an urban setting, “I think someone can absolutely make it work with a good system in place that streamlines their workload. Things like automatic doors and feed auto-delivered take a lot of your workload and makes it automated.”

The Joys of Raising Chickens

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We came home yesterday to a surprise new arrival. Our sweet little bantam, Betty(named by our electricians) had hatched a single fuzzy white chick. She’s already proving to be a great mama but not as open to me coming close to her babe as our other girls are. That’s ok too. . I can’t help but think of all the mamas out there praying for the right words and right actions while we all navigate new and unknown waters. Remember, there is not one single way to be a perfect mom but a million ways to be a good one. The best thing you can do for your babies right now is let go of the fear and stress. Soak up the slow down. Reevaluate what is important. They sense what is flowing out of you so let what is flowing out be peace. Then, wash your hands??

A post shared by Stephanie | SOUTH WILDWOOD (@southwildwood) on

“For us, it’s definitely not just knowing where our food comes from but also how it was treated,” says Webb when asked about the most rewarding aspect of adding chickens to your homestead.

“[It’s] shortening your supply chain. It gives you a much bigger appreciation for the work that goes into what is sitting on your plate.”

Webb adds that she appreciates how her children “are being raised with this level of responsibility.” She adds that “with the changing times, I think it is so important to have some level of self-reliance.

“It’s better to know how to and be able to before it’s a necessity.”

The Wonderful World of Rainbow Eggs

If you check out South Wildwood’s Instagram account, it’s a given that the array of striking rainbow eggs will catch your eye.

“I’m loving the grey tones some some of our girls lay,” says Webb, citing her current favorite shade of egg. “It’s like a new surprise every day when you check the nesting boxes.”

How Rainbow Eggs Work

Wondering exactly how you can produce such a range of different colored eggs?

As a basic explanation, Webb says, “Blue eggs deposit color in the actual shell, whereas with brown eggs coloring is painted on the outside. In the case of our Olive Eggers, it is a blue egg layer with two blue genes bred with a dark brown egg layer. When you take the blue egg and paint the outside with the dark brown, that is where you get the olive colored eggs.”

In short, Webb says that “the more paint, the darker they get.”

Sign Up for the Urban Chicken Movement

Weighing up the pros and cons of adding some chickens to your property? Webb says that you shouldn’t overthink it: “As long as you understand that it is a life and they are a commitment, take the plunge.”

Webb adds that the benefits of raising chickens are multiple.

“Sitting on our back patio and watching our girls forage and relax is the best stress reliever,” she says. “It’s right up there with gardening. I haven’t found one chicken person that doesn’t agree, too.

“If you haven’t tried fresh pasture-raised eggs before and are still on the fence, give them a try, then see if you’re still torn. You’ll never want to go back. No comparison.”

Follow South Wildwood at Instagram.

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