From the Classroom to the Farm


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MASON CITY, IA – It might not be the sights or sounds you’d expect to hear on a college campus.

But on Thursday, 150 red ranger chickens have just found a new home on North Iowa Community College’s campus.

“We’re lucky that we got them donated to us and it’s going to be a good experience,” says NIACC student Alex Buseman.

The chicks were brought to NIACC by Hoover’s Hatchery out of Rudd.

The goal is to have students work with the chickens and utilize different growing techniques to lean the right way to raise them.

“We’re hoping that they learn to grow poultry in the proper way they learn different techniques to raise the poultry in a humane and natural way,” says Tony Halsted from Hoover’s Hatchery.

Having the chickens actually on campus here at NIACC’s Farm Lab will give students a one of a kind experience.

“It’s really the first one of our knowledge especially on a junior college level that is doing it to see the impact of raising conditions and doing it naturally,” says Halsted.

Teaching the students how to raise the chickens is just part of the curriculum.

“Learning how to fully raise chickens for market for restaurants,” adds Buseman.

“We’d like to afford them the opportunity to learn how to market for themselves, whether it’s on a local basis, in farmers markets whether it’s selling to restaurants,” explains Halsted.

The students will also be able to do some studies with the help of the hatchery to determine different methods of raising the birds and how they impact the chickens. It’s all about making the experience more natural.

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