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Well now what will do. September 22, 2015

Posted by Tamara in Uncategorized.
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It is fall and things have changed. Eggs are now way up do to avian flu. We now have ducks and duck babies. But chickens are now locked up because they killed and ate 4 of them. Yes, you read that right they ate them. Chickens are omnivorous which means they eat meat as well as plants just like US. This is a problem to say the least when babies poultry is around. We free range the adult but lock up chicks until old enough to be with main flock if they are not raised by a hen.

Anyway, I had a small flock of adults left. Ducks are in the chainlink fence coop that we were putting roosters in to grow out last year. It has alot of tall weeds and is big enough for a small pool. BUT there was now small holed fencing around it to prevent baby ducks getting out. I never even though of it till it happened. Took me one day to figure it out and by then we lost 4. So we wrapped duck pen up as best as we could and locked up all the chickens for a bit. No more losses.

Now what this brings about is hubby and I are thinking of getting rid of the chickens in favor of laying ducks. We have the meat ducks Muscovys, Pekin and Cayuga. But we are thinking of Runners and getting rid of the chickens since we have to do so many grow out pens to raise them. My thought is ticks and how good the chickens are in controlling them. But we do not eat the chickens since I have issues with my brother in law in how to deal with carcass and it comes out tough do not not letting it reast for 24 to 48 hours after butcher. SO no one wants to deal with killing them since they can not eat them. Brother in law here that is and he eats alot. Hubby is not a big chicken fan and I prefer my chicken fried so…..

Now when it comes to the ducks here is how it stands. We all love it especially hubby and I. But meat ducks do not lay year round like chickens. Muscovys only lay to hatch out which is Fine by us but gives us no eggs for the year. Eggs here now are $2.30 a dozen. Likely to go higher. So will poultry meat. We are really thinking of buying Indian Runners for eggs but there is one issue with them. Unlike chickens they do not lay in a nest box or in a nest of anytype. But since they roam everywhere they just drop them unless lock up. I am going to talk with those that have them and see what the whole story is with them. I have a baker up the road that would love a steady source of duck eggs. So selling would not be an issue. Time will tell in the next month how this goes.


Winter and new animals December 10, 2013

Posted by Tamara in Uncategorized.
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We now have cows. Not my idea but hubby’s. He bought at auction a Holstein bull calf. A week later I bought a jersey cow with a Jersey/Angus calf on her. Cow is pregnant too a Guernsey/jersey cross. So we have milk and have made butter so far.

Chickens are now down by 5. BIL butchered our 4 roosters and 1 hens that was injured. Roosters came in at 5 lbs dressed weight. Hen at 3 lbs. She had a leg problem for a long time but was doing good till yesterday when 3 roosters corned her and beat her up. Chickens can be cruel that way.

Weather here has been rain slight but still rain for 4 days. Chickens are OK but other animals pigs and cows do not like it at all. Neither does BIL. I have been using straw/hay to cover our walk paths that are muddy. Chicken coop is on the bottom of our valley down from the high point where house is and cow barn is right now. Pigs are behind coop and what can you say but it is a pig pen.

I have a batch of eggs in the incubator. Do not think we will get much of a hatch do to cold weather. But BIL pushed for it. He has no real knowledge of chickens but he will learn to listen to me on them after this.

We will be building more coops for spring and summer. As I need at least 4 grow out pens. One for each hatching as older chicks will beat up on younger ones till they are all over months. Also being built will be breeding pen, well it is built but will be added too.

Our first broody did not stick, which does not surprise me. Roosters and hens we always pushing her out of nest box. I did not put her in her own pen knowing that eggs were not fertile yet.

All in all we have had a very good year this year. Hope next is just as good. Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

New pen April 4, 2013

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Well, do to hubby haveing time off from work we got alot done here this week. Back east old fence is now gone and almost ready for us to put up new fence. MIL is moved in and all that stuff sorted. The big one we have a new chick pen.

Hubby got hold of the old dog kennel up North and brought it down. It need a little bit of repair which did not take long. So after that and buying the bottom fence for keeping chicks in we moved it to the chick coop. We moved the chick coop a bit further over from where it was to an area that had alot of broken block in the ground. Brought down the panels of chain link and put two sides up, then realized we had those mixed up. LOL We were able to have small coop that is an A frame that I bought a few years back outside of pen and have door open inside. That way chicks will have the whole pen to be in. It is a 5x 10 dog chain link kennel. We are putting on the bottom 1/2 wire to block holes of the biger chain link to keep chicks in. We are going to put a top cross bar so we can cover the top also so that hawks do not get chicks. That should help alot with loosing baby chicks this year. I will be using the old pen that came with it to keep Sky in during the day some so she bonds with chicks.

We are now down to 5 females all laying and I am putting eggs in incubator today. Have not done it sooner as eggs were not fertile. But they are now with longer days. Weather today is rain so hens are locked up. Which is good for the last time I let them out they went off property to the 2 acres to the east and layed in some brambles. I had Sky with me on leash so I sent her in to flush them out. Which she did and brought to hubby our one real big hen that I am wanting to keep alot of chicks from. She is not the smartest by a long shot but is very good in size and body type. She is from another breeder out of state so a total outcross for me to breed on this year. I look forward to seeing her chicks but hope they have dads smarts not hers.