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turkey feather
Senior Contributor

Re: Do you keep chickens?

I no longer have chickens and get my fresh free-range eggs from grandson. Both he and neighbor are saying this winter has been hard on the egg count. Spring should change that problem. I can't go without my breakfast eggs but can't eat store-bought.

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Kjb665
Friend

Re: Do you keep chickens?

Around 20 Sex Link hens only. We use them for private use and sell to friends. I usually have no trouble selling all we have. Don't like to keep them more than 1 1/2 weeks. We feed grain and supplement with corn. We live in a timber environment so they need to be in an enclosure. When I can be out with them, I let them out to roam for bugs, etc. They all head directly to my compost pile to search for red worms. I feed them dandelion greens in the summer as well. Have tried about seven different breeds. This is a favorite.
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BlueMarina
Contributor

Re: Do you keep chickens?

I could talk for hours about my birds and my advice for someone just starting out and thinking about a few chickens for eggs- get some Aracaunas and silkies. They are sweet small birds who lay colored eggs and are a delight to have. The Roos are not agressive like some breeds. I had several that learned to coo a few notes I sang to them every time I came in to feed them. Yes, they learn very well.

Since we got the farm, I have been raising the large meat birds. They are very delicate, so don't start with those or you will get discouraged. However, once you get a good mother hen going out of the Aracaunas, then she will help you raise your baby meat birds (I had one that took 50 baby chicks under her wings).

We feed our birds sprouted fodder and they love it. We get grains from an organic seed store (Albert Lea Seed House) and then sprout that. It's healthier for the livestock and we add some calcium and minerals for extra good tasting eggs. I tried adding kelp to their sprouts once and yuck! The eggs tasted fishy, like kelp. There is an e-book on MyBackAchers.com on how to grow sprouts for livestock. It's not just healthier for them, it is a fraction of the cost of feed.
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BlueMarina
Contributor

Re: Do you keep chickens?

And if you have rodents- you are feeding your chickens too much.

Also, use a good rodent bait like Just One Bite and keep it where animals can't get to it.
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Midwest Farm
Veteran Contributor

Re: Do you keep chickens?

I haven't had time to read all the chicken threads, but did catch yours....thanks much for the sprouts tip!

 

I will be getting a few layers in a month or two and don't like buying all the feed!

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