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Old 01-01-2013, 12:04 PM   #21
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Big blue eyes;
It sounds like your Dad loves chickens too, and didn't mind a bit taking care of them for you.

Is that not the cutest icon!
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:36 PM   #22
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Hi Doozerdoo:
My grandfather wouldn't let anyone near his chicken houses either.
He would get on the gray hound bus before he got a car and go to the University to learn all he could. He became sort of an expert in chickens.
I moved back to my home town a few years ago, and ran into a man that said he took a dead chicken one time to my grandfather to ask him what he thought was wrong, and grandfather ran him off the place. He thought it funny and that my grandfather was strange. Hump, he didn't have enough sense to be ashamed!

My grandparents did eggs for a living for years. They started their business in the late 50s-- right out of the depression when grocery stores just started to become more than a store with a few items other than lye, sugar, and a coke machine.
You know -before the big box stores would come in and only buy from producers that could supply the whole eastern coast.
My grandparents ended up supplying whole south central Kentucky. they were supplying a needed product at the right time, and right place-they made a lot of money and ended up on the cover of the "Jackson Energy cooperatives Kentucky Living magazine" . I was so proud of them as you can see. I was right there at the very beginning of their business, since they took care of me while my parents were at work. They learned they needed to candle, even what they knew were fresh eggs. Grandfather reported back to grandmother that his eggs were too dirty, the excitement over the purchase of an egg bather, and then the sorting machine. He made a good living and was able to retire and bought a nice beef farm.

He passed the business to his son. His son stayed in the business for about another decade. The Ag experts at the University then started telling the egg producers to put the laying hens in huge big cages and put three chickens per cage. He had chutes of water and food passing through the cages, along with water running under them to clean the droppings. The cages where stacked up pretty high; all under old chicken house roof, but the sides were all knocked out to let lots of air and light in. In the winter they put up plastic like in a green house around them.

Then the experts started telling them that they could put four, and then five, and then six -chickens in each cage- and he finally got out of the business. My Grandmother was a true lover of chickens and did not like the crowding, or the cages. Besides as big as my uncle was he was still not big enough to supply as many eggs as the chain stores were demanding, and slowly they were taking the place of family owned grocery stores.

Thirty years later- the news reported there were bacteria in the eggs (I had a hard time believing that one) No, it was on the surface of the eggs (pale yellow eggs at that)-- and the washing of the eggs didn't take care of it??? They then showed on the news that all the eggs are produced out of the Chicago area - with laying hens in a box - so small they cannot even stand up. They had to have light ???-- but all I saw was a light bulb on the outside for workers. Now how is the chicken going to produce much vitamin D in that egg? What kind of feed do they feed that chicken? Why was the egg washing not getting rid of salmonella?It did not look like they cared, about the animals or could see pass what they were doing - might harm the consumer?

My father raised fryers for a living too because it was less work - and he was working at a rubber ring plant and running a milk route. He cared about what kind of feed he gave his chickens too. Years later I find out that some feed companies and producers are or were putting arsenic in their feed because it makes the fryers put on a lot more weight - faster? Good gosh!

Sorry Doozerdoo - I got off topic - it just amazes me what they did with the poultry industry.

I am not clean with my chickens like I should - I think that is a good idea of wearing different shoes. I have geese that roam and they love to go sit by the chicken coop and look in. But let a rooster get out and he chases them all the way down the road.

Do you put down any lime in the chicken run. I have not done that yet -- it is fairly new. I am worried that I will burn their feet with it and have yet to figure out how I can put it down and keep them off of it long enough for it to be safe.

I feed mine all kinds of veg scraps. Watermelon is their favorite.
Wow what an awesome story! I can see where when my grand parents had chickens things were so much better, my mom had free range chickens and they were well cared for. I do not use lime, I was to worried so I did what many many do, I laid down sand, by the truck load we filled the pen floor with it, best thing I ever did! Wrap a pitch fork with screen and scoop the poop. Like a litter box. No smell and no fuss. The sand is so drying that the poop drys pretty fast to boot .
My coop is cleaned every 3 weeks, poop boards cleaned 1 time a week. That alone is 75% of the poop gone. I use shavings, much cleaner in my opinion and super cheap. My coop would hold around 20 birds very comfortably using the 3 or 4 square feet per bird rule and more room to spare. But we chose to do ten girls at a time since we want them to have lots of space . We add a breeding cage to hold the broody and chicks when we see a broody wanting to sit. We use a huge carrier for a giant breed dog so the mama can walk around in it and we can add food and water for the chicks. Then we take the door off the carrier and when she is ready she takes the chicks out side. We also add extra nesting boxes in the spring . I had them made and there sooo nice! 15x15x15 large and roomy . Winter is fun, we put heavy hevy plastic all around the pen and use small slates to keep it from tearing . The pen stays a lot warmer and no snow, water or wind. There is still lots of light and they continue to lay well. I noticed my egg laying is down , the darkness of December I supose. I added a bit more light at 6:00 in the morning so I did start getting an extra egg. Also seeing one gal looking broody, will be putting eggs under her soon. Even in the cold mama does wonderful !
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:39 PM   #23
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Blue eyes, mine go nuts over them to lol. We are still giving them squash we found on sale in the fall . Yogert is always a big hit, as it horse pellets of alfalfa and yogert. Today there getting leftovers .
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:03 PM   #24
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Big blue eyes;
It sounds like your Dad loves chickens too, and didn't mind a bit taking care of them for you.
All of the animals came and went. Sometimes we'd have horses, occasionally pigs, once we had quail. But it seems he always has a sassy bantam rooster hanging around, even when the flock goes away. He likes his chickens.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:26 PM   #25
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Truck loads of sand. Hmmp; I forgot how much I paid for sand when they were bricking my house, but that does beat clay mud clinging to them in the wet winter. I will consider it.
Right now I am considering more chicken houses, since we have two different breeds and even two different colors for the silkies.

Darn I was hoping my daughter would just pick one breed. Is that asking too much? It seems to be evolving into chicken city around here!

Oh, I was just thinking about alfalfa pellets just the other day. The garden stuff has slowed down even the Kale I had covered up.
The geese -I tried the alfalfa pellets and they would not eat them. chickens though -- won't they be to big for them too?
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:33 PM   #26
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Truck loads of sand. Hmmp; I forgot how much I paid for sand when they were bricking my house, but that does beat clay mud clinging to them in the wet winter. I will consider it.
Right now I am considering more chicken houses, since we have two different breeds and even two different colors for the silkies.

Darn I was hoping my daughter would just pick one breed. Is that asking too much? It seems to be evolving into chicken city around here!

Oh, I was just thinking about alfalfa pellets just the other day. The garden stuff has slowed down even the Kale I had covered up.
The geese -I tried the alfalfa pellets and they would not eat them. chickens though -- won't they be to big for them too?
Silkies hey, do they lay much? I know folks have them cause there cute, but as far as egg laying? The pellets are soaked in water first, hot water to desolate them, then I add the stuff to oatmeal, or yougurt or even just set the bowl of green stuff on the ground. My girls love the stuff. Do you have a top on your pen? Look at my pen, get an idea as my goind is always totally dry. Never any water in it. The sand cost me 20.00 a load, we have a very small truck, 2 loads and man it's awesome! They bath in it, and love it. And it's clean!
I would consider putting a top on your pens, to keep them dry and the muck from stinking to high heaven
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:12 AM   #27
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Oh Thanks Doozerdoo:
Oh thanks, --for telling me how you fix the alfalfa pellets.
Dang, I have such a sketchy memory - Surely I soaked the alfalfa pellets for the geese? Maybe not?
But I bet I did not mix it with their regular food - that is a good idea. I think I will try it with the geese again too. I am going to pick me up a bag today.

If they don't eat it I know the cows are so appreciative. Poor things- my son and hubby are changing over their hay from the hay shed to the lower barn and they are so picky about hay - they have been slow eating it.

So either way it will be used.

Yesterday I gave my chickens potatoes and tangerines. I don't think they knew what to do with the tangerines. I left while they were making up their minds.

Oh, yes Siklies are cute. When I started to leave, one followed me to the door and I could just hear it saying like a small child - Hey; I am special grandma- you got anything for just me? I had a little bit of cheese still on the plate and I gave her that.

As far as egg laying, they do lay a lot. Between the silkies, the Polish and the geese - I have enough eggs. I did have to buy some this past November though - everything slowed down and over the holidays all the recipes calls for a lot of eggs.

The Silkies lay a very dark orange yolk egg which as you know - all the nutritionists are now saying go for colorful food probably means more nutrients and antioxidants and all that.?
I think it means they have more grass and special grains too? For even the Polish eggs are dark yellow.

The polish- lay larger eggs, and are real egg producers (they so far have not every become broody) but lay all the time!

The geese lay eggs in the spring and summer. Of all the eggs and most meats even - geese eggs have more vitamin B 12 than any other food.,

The top of the run is wire to keep out the hawks and I have fall clematis growing pretty thick.

I could put a roof on it fairly easy, the support is there, except the run is so big.

I need to find out how to put pictures on here - I would show you my coop.
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Old 01-03-2013, 11:15 AM   #28
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Lorax gave me instructions let me see what I can do with the pictures.
Attached Thumbnails
Broody Chickens-img_0198.jpg   Broody Chickens-img_0200.jpg   Broody Chickens-img_0417.jpg   Broody Chickens-img_0511.jpg  
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:34 PM   #29
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Nice set-up!
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Old 01-05-2013, 03:41 PM   #30
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Liquid> I'm totally with your grandfather!!!! I don't "visit" other people's coops around here any more because of the risk of contamination and.... I really don't want anyone over here who's got chickens anywhere near my coop and run. My vet has been here and even though he uses disposable boot covers..... I still don't want him going near my coop unless.... I'm the 1st on his route. Marek's disease is the 1 nasty that's unnerving me. So many strains of it... so many changes and mutations… too many conflicting peer reviewed publications. The risk of pathogen transference seems just too high for my comfort level.
--
This is just something to think about, Egg Washing. I've run into a few folk using the foam. They swear by it. Me.... I'm not so sure. I burn feathers and use oxine.
--
I LOOOOOOVE your coops. You done good girl!!! My husband walked by and stopped to look at your photos. He said they look real easy to clean out. Question for ya.... are you somewhere warmer that you don't need insulation in your walls? And.... I take it no coyotes or stray dogs where you live? I got stuck surrounding my run with hog panels before adding chicken wire. The windows to my coops were constructed with built in panels that I can attach hardwire cloth to because we've got so many raccoons around here and.... don't even ask me what lengths I've gone to trying to protect my "goils" from raptors. I'm still losing some to hawks but... not as many. The mink problem in this area.... I'm working on it. I'm thinking that's gonna be an ongoing battle.
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bath, behavior, broody, broody chicken, broody hen, chickens, chicks, dip, dipping, domestic chickens, eggs, hens, poultry, rooster, water

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