Any other folks into raising chickens????
I am renewing a hobby I once was fanatical about back in Santa Cruz. Back then I had near every chicken variety available. Now I see many new ones have been developed: – Favaucana was a most interesting new labrapoodle type, a designer cross with two of my favorites. Faverolles and Auracana.
Experience and sad remembrance – the Faverolle rooster is one to have. My Faverolle Rooster was the mightiest bird of all – not neurotic or cowardly as the touted fighting Araucana was. Coyotes hit me once and slaughtered some of my chickens – The Faverolle gave his life to protect them, the Aracuana rooster survived and was safely perched high up in the shed. Now this new hybrid is beyond my price range but I think I am going with Ameraucana, Speckled Cookoo Maran, Speckled Sussex and Welsummer if I can get locally. Easter Eggers and Olive Eggers for the future.
and my house will soon be a bit more chirpy for the next few weeks. 🙂
Couple of guard geese or an attack turkey would be great but I simply do not have the space, nor desire to deal with their splats.
YES, the Welsummer is a favorite pick … Gorgeous, dark eggs, though they don’t lay as many eggs per year as others. I pared it down to medium size birds with some predator ducking ability was one factor – free rangers and this bird certainly is equal to the Maran.
Still remaining is my attempt to get a Faverolle rooster – not as hot about the shy low pecking order on faverolle hens, but the Fav/Ameraucana cross looks like something to try.
Speckled Sussex won out because the Speckled Sussex is one of those family friendly birds, “Well dressed, curious, chatty and always keen to entertain – this chicken is the Oprah of the poultry world.”
Just figured out a great holding tub for the post four week birds as 70sh weather is a LONG time away.
More on the Red Green housing – a gutted old dryer machine.
(The lint filter becomes the entry for a lamp, front door opens to put in food and water and the top lifts up for serious revisions. The bottom is nice and sealed to keep rats out and the ONLY change made was reversing the back plate so the four inch dryer vent is now on the BOTTOM instead of up three feet. This can be opened and closed off easily.) Another unit will store the food. Another bonus – the long aluminum box holding the heating element can be a drop feeder. The dryer tub makes for a great planter.
Mail order sources are many but shipping costs and minimums are killers.
One I used to buy from but their minimum is the same as most. FIFTEEN chicks. I then tried to order from another and 3 ea. female Sussex and Welsummer and ONE Fav. rooster. *36.00 express freight.* Think I will stay and buy local.
For the moment I am just into a few chicks. I still have a project to get the future coop in shape and then !!! Nothing cheap here … just saw the beginning outlay needed and that is for a Red Green layout not a Martha Stewart’s.
I just finished pricing out the starting needs. UGH. Sadly I had garage sale’d (sp.) all that stuff away, so it will be a new start. Well, I have the time and property but slow will be the start.
As I wrote in the local blog they are like people, some have better personalities than others and some actually will come when beckoned. Some follow you around like a pet dog. Some are better adapted to our winters and some hate the heat. HA! Others are broody in more than one sense of the word. I will be trying for darker colored birds (Anacona’s were another good one) to give some camouflage protection from hawks and eagles.
Yes, chicken people are good folks as well … so are beekeepers – Silkies were not a favorite in the egg laying dept. but I had all three colors. Poor egg layers, got mites and up here in the wet climate would be a bedraggled mess. Still, I liked those fluff balls as they were great Mom’s and actually used to follow you around.
Small snails??? They would come running if you called “Have some crunchies here!!!”
Two immediate issues jump out at me.
1. Varmint control, be it field rats or stray dogs and cats. Obvious answers but I sure as heck would appreciate if people did not let their animals prowl the neighborhood.
2. Medicated feed or not. ???
It seems to me that if you are raising them in a controlled (dirt free arena) some of the coccidocis issues might not be an issue. Some regions of the country are infested with it but if the chicks were vaccinated I would opt for a pro biotic diet and supplement with trace minerals and medicated water if needed. Electrolytes and such.
Now I started with the medicated Purina product but will stop at three weeks as the medication in that feed will have a carry over affect for long after . The alternative of giving liquid Ampro medication IMO as with pesticides has a much shorter half- life issue.
Mostly, if you provide a draft free and warm environment you will have healthy chicks. Stressed and over crowded ones will always be more disease prone.
So, what is your favorite chicken breed? Do you have Speckled Sussex? If not, I hope you’ll consider this breed as an addition to your flock.
ameraucana, araucana, backyard chickens, backyard eggs, blue egg layers, breeding chickens, chicken breeds, easter egger chicken, egg colors, marans, olive egger, raising baby chicks, Great Maran link page . Old fashioned RAT TRAP
Herbs that chickens love. I would add calendula, parsley, hemp and chamomile – but basically every ‘chicken garden should include:
Catmint: Nepeta cataria. A repellent for lice and ticks on chickens.
Comfrey: Symphytum officinale. Beneficial to chickens for their general health and laying, but their leaves can be harmful to humans if ingested. Now why we can eat avocados and they cannot I have no clue.
Fennel: Foeniculum vulgare. Their foliage and seeds are good for chickens to eat for general health. tasty for your own cooking as well.
Lavender: Lavandula species. Only because they won’t eat them. Put dried lavender in your chicken coop for an enhancing fragrance and to calm chickens.
Nasturtium: Tropaeolum majus. A great general herb for chicken health. It has antiseptic and antibiotic properties. Its seeds can be used as a natural chicken de-wormer. It also has insect repellent qualities.
Rosemary: Rosmarinus officinalis. Its aromatic scent repels insects.
Sage: Salvia spp. Many different varieties, and quite striking in a garden setting. Sage is a good herb for chickens’ general health.
Now – just to name a club for the Olympic Peninsula yolks.
Name possibilities for the club: Chicken NAMES can be found here! 🙂
The Fluffer Eggers
Edward Scissor Beak Club
Eggs and Pecks club
Annie Yolkley Club
All Americauna team
Or perhaps something more Faverolle ROYAL?