Posts Tagged ‘hens’

It’s spring! In typical springtime fashion, temperatures are about freezing this morning, but we should have a high of 64 today. As the weather warms up, our outdoor chore list is exploding. We have so many exciting things to do, and finally the weather is nice enough to do them! Here are the adventures from […]

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For all the diversity in this world, some things are universal. Like how children rub their eyes when they’re tired. Or how the minute they see a flock of chickens, they’re chasing after the birds. We have ducks in the front, and the minute children step out of a vehicle they’re tearing after the ducks. On […]

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Spring is here! Well, it feels that way at least. As the days warm up and get longer, we are busy completing projects on the homestead. Unfortunately that means there’s been less time to record all the excitement here on the blog, and I missed posting an update last Friday. Sorry! Here’s an update on […]

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It’s been another busy week on the homestead. This morning we’ve been busy preparing for the pekin ducks that will arrive next week! Look forward to some delicious, healthy pastured duck meat to be available around the beginning of May. Love for Whispering Willow Lip Balm I recently tested the Whispering Willow Lip Balm we […]

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Red Sex Link Chicks [Video]

We have chicks now! A couple of weeks ago we received our latest batch of chicks in the mail, 100 red sex link hen chicks. We order chicks from a reputable hatchery and then raise the chicks in our brooders in the garage. These chicks were very popular and we sold out quickly! Because they […]

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It’s been another chilly week here on the farm! While it feels like spring may never come, I remind myself that this cold weather means less pests will survive winter and be around to cause trouble in spring and summer. More Goats! This past week we added two more goats to the homestead! First I picked […]

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Spring is Coming! It may not feel like it now, but spring is fast approaching! I can see it in the days that are getting progressively longer. Today we worked outside until 6:30pm, and it seems that not so long ago it was dark by 5pm. While we look forward to warmer weather, I know […]

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For about a month now we’ve been experimenting with a fodder system for feed. It’s still in the experimentation phase, but I thought I’d share our results so far. After some research, we decided to play around with growing barley fodder. It could lower our feed costs, plus we really like the idea of having […]

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We’ve had hens laying for about 4 months now and wanted to share a chart of our egg production. Our expectations were certainly different than what the results ended up being. The variation in egg production from day to day was a surprise to us, as well as the relatively low numbers of eggs given […]

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You may have read a previous post where we mention that in the spring we fermented our chicken feed. We stopped doing this over summer because wetness breeds fly problems. Around the end of August the fly population dropped and we began fermenting chicken feed again. Here’s a quick summary of why and how we do […]

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As we enjoy the cooler fall weather and prepare for winter, there have been a lot of fun happenings on the farm! Whiskey found a butternut squash from a volunteer plant that must’ve grown from compost.   Apparently butternut squash is Whiskey’s idea of a dog treat! We have also seen several walking sticks around. […]

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This weekend we made some updates to the hoophouse we built for the laying hens a couple months back. Overall the hoophouse has been doing great, but we found a few places we could make some one-time improvements that could cut down on the time we spent doing periodic maintenance. The first thing we addressed […]

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Broody Hen (Again)

You may remember when last month we wrote about breaking a hen of her broodiness (article here). Since that time we have had to break broodiness again, and this week we had a hen go broody again! All three times the hen has been a Buff Orpington. Since all the Buff hens look the same, […]

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Broody Hen

This week we had the adventure of dealing with a broody hen! I realized a hen was broody when I went to close up the chicken coop for the night, and one of the Buff Orpington hens was in a nesting box. The Buffs are really good about sleeping on roosts, so I knew she […]

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This spring and summer were our first on the homestead, and we are very happy with how much we accomplished. We were able to begin producing some products to sell, chicken and eggs, but primarily this year was a foundational year of laying the groundwork for various endeavors. Meat Chickens In the spring we raised about […]

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Step One: Wheelbarrow over a lot of rocks. Arrange them to make a border. Step Two: Lay out cardboard to smother grass, weeds, etc. (In retrospect, I would lay out the cardboard before setting out the rocks, that way the cardboard could be under the rocks. It was hard getting the cardboard over the greenery […]

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Jumbo Eggs

Did you know there are standards defining egg sizes? Chickens start out laying eggs that are relatively small. As they age the eggs they lay get bigger. We have been enjoying the small to medium-sized eggs our hens have been laying, many of them contain “double yolks” which makes them extra-nutritious. Today, however, we received a […]

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In the first post of our hoop house build, I detailed how we built the frame for the hoop house. Here I will detail the rest of the process: covering it, getting it setup for chickens, and getting the chickens in it! We recently picked up some white tarps at a garage sale, in fact that purchase […]

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We are building a hoop house!  This will house hens over the winter.  The bedding from the hens will decompose, creating great compost.  In the spring we’ll move the hens out and plant vegetables.   The basic structure for the hoop house is a 2×4 wood base, with two cattle panels as the hoop, connected […]

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We have our beehives in our chicken run, and some people have asked how the bees and chickens get along. Beekeepers said the hens would eat the bees, and others worried if the bees would harass the hens. We have found that the bees and the hens don’t interact at all. Then hens go all […]

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We often refer to the dogs as our “four-legged chickens” when they try to sneak into the chicken run for a snack of chicken feed.  Well today was a first: Noah the dog learned to drink from the chicken waterer!  Now those poor chickens really have to watch out, the dogs try to steal their food and […]

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As we celebrated our first eggs from our laying hens, I wanted to mark the occasion by preparing them differently than our standard method of over medium.  I remembered a friend talking about egg-in-a-hole, and that seemed like an interesting way to make the eggs, especially since I had just made some bread!  I loosely […]

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We collected the first egg from our flock today!  For a couple of weeks we’ve been eagerly anticipating the arrival of eggs.  The earliest chickens are known to lay is 16 weeks, but the breeds we have typically lay later than that.  This egg came at 19.5 weeks.  For the hen that laid the egg, […]

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We started our first chicks with the typical feed setup: dry conventional feed in a basic plastic chick feeder.  Within weeks, though, we knew the basic setup wasn’t ideal.  We quickly switched to organic feed, and currently get our feed from Countryside Organics.  In the near future we plan on making our own custom feed […]

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We have some more chickens here on the farm!  We have exciting plans for laying hens, and we realized the 20 hens (well, 19 hens and 1 rooster) we have just wouldn’t be enough for all our plans.  So, we got more birds!  We picked up another two dozen laying hens.  A couple should be […]

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