Chickens

iList Western Kentucky, ilistpaducah.com

iList Western Kentucky's iNest columnist/blogger/homesteader Kelsie Gray writes about topics ranging from taking care of chickens in your backyard to making your own deodorant. On Sounds Good, Kate Lochte meets Gray and learns more about her writing, why she's named her chickens after small towns in Oklahoma and how she developed a passion for homesteading while living on a commune.

Don't kiss your chickens!

That's the message from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which is blaming a salmonella outbreak on backyard chicken owners being overly affectionate with their flocks.

The CDC says more than 180 people have come down with salmonella across the U.S. this year from contact with backyard poultry. Thirty-three of them became so sick they required hospitalization.

Katie Brady / Flickr (Creative Commons License)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has found about half of ground chicken is contaminated with salmonella, and the agency is proposing new standards to reduce the bacteria by 30 percent.

The new rule would mean more testing, which John-Mark Hack says is more expense for the processor. He is a co-founder at Marksbury Farm Market in Garrard County.

You're in the supermarket gathering ingredients for eggnog and a Christmas Bundt cake, and you're staring at a wall of egg cartons. They're plastered with terms that all sound pretty wonderful: All-Natural, Cage-Free, Free-Range, Farm Fresh, Organic, No Hormones, Omega-3. And so on.

And yet the longer you stare at them, the more confused you become. You are tired and hungry, so you just grab the cheapest one — or the one with the most adorable chicken illustration — and head for the checkout line.

Hickman County Arts Council & Friends, Facebook

The Hickman County Arts Council is raising money in connection with Clinton's Chicken Festival by selling hand-painted chickens crafted out of concrete. The brightly decorated chickens are on sale during the Hickman County Spring Chicken Festival, April 25-26. Mary Potter speaks with Kate Lochte about the chickens and the festival on Sounds Good