Farm We're getting chickens.....again

ginnie6

Veteran Member
We had them for 18+ years until this past winter. I was tired and didn't want to do them anymore. Dh misses them though. Years ago when I first got them he was so mad he wouldn't speak for about 3 days. A friend and her dh came and helped me build a coop and run. Now he's been begging me to get more. It's up to me cause I'm the one tending to them. He has 4 coming Sunday. I told him yesterday they were coming and he needed to build a new coop and fix the run. The coop is built and the run will be fixed tomorrow lol. He jumped right on that!
So back to chicken keeping. I told him these were pets. I'm not planning on butchering anymore. So he gets his fresh eggs, I get to sit and watch chicken tv and feed them worms, and everyone is happy lol.
 

mudlogger

Veteran Member
We're getting chickens again, too.

I ordered 50 of the Slow Whites that Summerthyme loves, bought an incubator, thinking I can sell chicks next spring...who knows what kind of world we'll be living in.

And, of course, a friend just ordered some chicks yesterday, so I'm adding 6 Buff Orp hens and 2 roosters. If it's the beginning of the apocalypse we may as well have fun!
 

West

Senior nut
Our flock has been dieing off for the most part over the past year. Plus a new puppy who is a working livestock guarding dog who took a few of the older hens by trying to keep them in the coop/barn area, she would corner them then lame them. We are now over that and she just leaves them alone now. Lots of work and patiants.

About 6 months ago a small and young white banty hen just showed up. So we went and got another 14 banties. See how this goes.

Since the coop is always open, our hens have a true free range of about a acre or two.

Just had to "relocate" another giant rat snake. I knew the missing eggs from the three hens still laying, where taking from a snake. The small bantum is hideing her eggs now in different areas around the area, grr..
 

West

Senior nut
So there's no misunderstandings if times get bad, we will be stripping the meat off of the rat snakes we have to relocate and frying them in what ever we can till golden brown.
 

ginnie6

Veteran Member
I have NO intention of getting overloaded with chickens again! We used to have 18+ and I couldn't keep up with the eggs! We want just enough to keep us supplied in eggs and these 4 will do that job. Our egg consumption has gone way down over the years. Used to be when the kids were all here and little it was nothing to cook up a dozen for breakfast. Now someone might eat 2 a day.
Now my sil got 12......dd told him they were his and she wasn't doing a thing with them except eat the eggs. She always hated chicken chores growing up lol.
These aren't laying yet but it shouldn't be long. Gotta pick out a good spot on the counter for eggs I guess. We completely remodeled my kitchen this past winter and I'm still figuring out where stuff goes lol.
 

paxsim2

Contributing Member
I had a few years back. Had to have them in secret due to being in the city. LOL I gave them away to friends and my sister, she still had one of them she is about 12 years old. She's gone broody so my sis is getting some eggs to sit on. I would love to have them again.
 

patriotgal

Veteran Member
Have six 2 week old banty young'uns in a tub on bathroom counter. I hear ya' about not getting overloaded. Going to try to dissuade my banty moms from constantly reproducing. I'm neck deep in eggs now. But those chicks are sooo darn cute.
 

Marie

Veteran Member
:lkick: My lgd picks up my hens when they stray too far. keeps them in a tight flock so he can "watch" them. He is ever so gentle with them. He is a sweet and gentle soul. The 4 and 2 legged babies on the farm are his everlasting joy. They use him as a surrogate mom when moms go about there business
 

ginnie6

Veteran Member
:lkick: My lgd picks up my hens when they stray too far. keeps them in a tight flock so he can "watch" them. He is ever so gentle with them. He is a sweet and gentle soul. The 4 and 2 legged babies on the farm are his everlasting joy. They use him as a surrogate mom when moms go about there business
we had the best great pyr ever! We all loved that dog. Lost him right after his 3rd birthday to a congenital heart problem. We cried for weeks. He was great with the chickens but his "flock" was the children. Oh how he loved them. My boys napped with him as their pillow. He even washed their ears if he thought they needed it lol. After we lost him we got another pyr. That one had issues. One day ds was lying beside him and got up and went to the couch. The dog looked at him and started growling. Now ds was always the one that fed him too. DD started calling the dog and he ignored her. By that time I heard the commotion and came in the room. Saw a look in the dog's eyes that wasn't right and screamed his name. He looked at me and just acted kind of dazed. That was his last day here and I haven't had the heart to get another pyr. Plus we don't keep as many chickens and the kids are grown. Our current dog would not be happy either...she is the Alpha and does not want other dogs here. She tolerates dd's dog when he comes over but after a few hours she is like "go home!"
 

Marie

Veteran Member
My angel looks after everyone here. But most of all Momma (me) he walks just at my side and "helps" me during chores. Or just to be with all my babies (livestock) I had surgery last year and was fairly unsteady so now he is my "crutch" at all times. He makes my heart sing!
 

mudlogger

Veteran Member
:lkick: My lgd picks up my hens when they stray too far. keeps them in a tight flock so he can "watch" them. He is ever so gentle with them. He is a sweet and gentle soul. The 4 and 2 legged babies on the farm are his everlasting joy. They use him as a surrogate mom when moms go about there business
Some years ago a neighbor had a field with cows, and most days, a baby deer. Mama apparently thought they were good babysitters, because we never saw her.
 

patriotgal

Veteran Member
Our great pyr tried to carry all the hens back to the chicken house the first time we let them out. He had guarded them as chicks and thought they belonged back inside. Pyrs are great!
 

nchomemaker

Veteran Member
I had ordered 10 golden comets and 10 buff orpington chicks from Tractor Supply, when they finally were shipped to my P.O. and we got them home, started putting them into the brooder, and realized Tractor Supply sent me 20 of each kind. Oh my! Well 6 of them died, but the rest look good and healthy. I wonder why they sent me twice as many as I ordered. It's not my first time raising chicks, been doing it many years. I don't know why the 6 died, but I'm wondering if T.S. worker knew some of them didn't look healthy???
 

Betty_Rose

Veteran Member
I’ve got 14 chickens and they’re six weeks old and I cannot begin to describe how much joy these birds bring.

During the day, I put them outside in the big dog kennel I bought for them (with a canopy), and at night they go into the basement-garage into a toddler corral.

Watching them grow has been a blast.

And I just ordered a really nice chicken coop which cost some serious dough, but it’s FOR THE CHILDREN!!! ;)
 

Freeholder

This too shall pass.
I’m thankful that this place came with a chicken coop. Then my friend brought her smaller coop over here, since she’s on the road most of the time and can’t keep chickens right now.

I just shifted my feed store pullets- eight golden sex-links, two buff Orpington, and seven Delawares - from the small coop to the bigger one. One of the Delawares appears to be a cockerel, but that’s fine. A couple of days ago I moved eleven Icelandic chicks from a box in the house to a rabbit cage. The eggs in the incubator should start hatching in the next day or so, and they will need the box next.

So, all told, we will have plenty of chickens. There will be some surplus cockerels for chicken soup by this fall, and eggs for us and some to either give away or sell. Probably some surplus pullets to give away or sell, too, if more people start thinking that a few hens in the back yard might be a good idea. Barter goods are a great idea; self-reproducing barter goods are an even better idea!

Kathleen
 

nomifyle

Has No Life - Lives on TB
When I was little everyone had chickens, and then we moved to town, got eggs from the store. As an adult I wanted chickens but was never in a place I could have them plus I didn't really know much about keeping them. Along came DH who had a large flock (about 50). We moved them from Illinois to Louisiana in the back of my pick up truck that has a camper top on the back. We did lose several in transit, including his favorite triple cone rooster. In the six years we've been together we've raised and lost many, coons and possums are chicken killers. This winter we were down to 12 hens and one rooster, which give a fair amount of eggs. We've added about 40 new chickens, some roosters may be involved. We've given away the roosters in the past to someone who wanted to butcher them. We were not interested. However this time I've changed my mind about giving the roosters away. I need to learn to can chicken. As for taking care of the chickens, DH pretty much does that except when he doesn't feel well. So I've learned about chickens just being around them. That's a good thing.

Judy
 

Shooter

Veteran Member
I raise Great Pyreneese. have a couple of litters a year, best kid or animal dog there is.

but chickens, I have 2 about 1 year old.all of a sudden 1 quit laying eggs, and now just sets on the others egg.anyway to stop this?

I also got 12 more Red, from Tractor supply, 4 died, but others are doing good.
 

summerthyme

Administrator
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I raise Great Pyreneese. have a couple of litters a year, best kid or animal dog there is.

but chickens, I have 2 about 1 year old.all of a sudden 1 quit laying eggs, and now just sets on the others egg.anyway to stop this?

I also got 12 more Red, from Tractor supply, 4 died, but others are doing good.
Your 1 year old hens are likely molting (or else the one who has "stopped laying" actually is hiding a nest and will also be trying to set as soon as she gets a clutch.

To "break up" a broody hen, you have to get her thinking about other things. For some, simply removing them from the nest every time you see them will work. Others are much harder to discourage. One trick that almost always works is to put them in a cage or dog crate, and set it on a 2-3" pole, so it isn't quite stable. This literally keeps her off balance. Generally 24-48 hours in the rocking cage works.

I've got a Cuckoo Maran/True Blue cross who has been broody for at least 3 weeks. I keep thinking she'll give up, but so far, she's determined. I may try moving her to a dog crate and see if she'll persist. But I've already got 25 chicks I hatched in the incubator, 25 Slow Whites (which will also be egg layers... all of those are straight run, so I'm going to have lots of cockerels for dog food. Although I'm planning on giving a trio of Slow Whites to my son, and also our newlywed Amish hired man... seed stock to keep them fed in case things get worse.

Speaking of... I'm trying to get my customers to tell me how many birds they want, so I can order my 2nd batch of Cornish for pasture now. We've got about 120 CornishX 1 week old chicks in the barn (lost almost 18 in the first 36 hours... very unusual for us with Welp's birds. Last year, I ordered 115, they shipped 118, and we butchered 118... didn't lose a single bird!)

Anyway, I got an e-mail from McMurray hatchery, apologizing for being out of CornishX chicks, and saying they "have every incubator going full blast with CornishX eggs". So far, Welp doesn't seem to be running too short, although both my orders this year so far (the Slow Whites and the CornishX) were shipped 1 week later than they said.

Summerthyme
 

Freeholder

This too shall pass.
I decided not to mail-order chicks this year. The post office they would come to has moved about three times since we moved here, and I still haven’t found the new location! Plus I didn’t want to get a big batch of meat birds that would all need to be butchered at once, because my daughter’s health situation was still uncertain (she’s doing really well now).

I’m planning to work on the existing rabbit cages, and convert one big cage (six feet square) into four more rabbit cages, and get some meat rabbits. I can feed them largely on weeds and brush, with a lot less purchased feed than meat chickens require, so I think that’s a better way for us to go. I had been reluctant to do rabbits here, because I thought the males might have fertility problems in the summer heat. But I talked to a lady whose daughter raised rabbits for a 4-H project, and she said they never had any fertility problems with theirs.

Kathleen
 

Freeholder

This too shall pass.
We have twelve new Icelandic chicks in the incubator, and more still hatching. With the sixteen from the first two batches, plus the five adult birds, I think we are back to having a stable population again. And we have a neighbor with some and can (and do) trade with her. Should probably get a rooster or two from different bloodlines in a few years, but for now we are in pretty good shape.

Kathleen
 

Walrus Whisperer

Hope in chains...
To discourage a broody hen, you need to put them in a wire cage that has the bottom off the ground. Lots of air under the girls is what has worked for me several times. Usually takes around 3 or 4 days or so. It cools their broody patch off. They need to be protected if u have them outside and shade if it's hot, of course. I have a place in my back room so they aren't outside at nite. I have rabbit cages that the bottoms are off the ground that work well.
 
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