The past decade has brought a resurgence of interest in small-scale poultry-keeping.

Concerns about food safety, as well as environmental and ethical issues, have led consumers to look for alternatives to industrially-produced meat and eggs. In response, a growing number of farmers, as well as ordinary citizens, are raising small flocks of chickens outdoors. They need birds with qualities that have no value to an industrial producer; birds that can thrive in variable weather, forage some of their own food, and produce both eggs and meat. In other words, birds like the American breeds of a century ago.

The Revival, page 2