Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Its All About Chickens!

Its been a busy couple of days once again.. We got the rabbits moved to the big barn and all set up. Its made to were the goats and sheep cant get to them! They would probably destroy the cages trying to get to the rabbit food! My oldest DD is putting hay in the nest boxes and we have hung the nest box and the feeders. So we should have no more smashed hens.....

So I thought I would take pictures of the different chickens we have...
This is one of my Ameruacanas. They lay the different colored eggs. I have gotten pink, green and some blue but mostly green and brown... The chickens themselves come in a wide variety of colors! The middle chicken in the next pic is also a Ameruacana hen. I think I have 12 Ameruacana hens.

Here is one of my light Brahma hens. These are real gentle and tame.. They are so pretty to me anyway. They are almost 2 yrs old now. Light Brahmas are suppose to be good winter layers too. They haven't done bad at all with all the moving and stuff we have done....

There is my light Brahma rooster. He has never once even fluffed his neck feathers at me.. You do have to corner him to catch him but once you do he just sits in your arms. He was also in our church Easter drama. The kids loved him!!


This was a breed my youngest DD got this last spring the girls saved their money and each picked a breed. She ended up with No hens... SO here is Comanche he is a Mottled Houdan. He is real wild and thinks he is hot stuff.. But when you call his bluff he runs!! She wants to show him next year at the fair...


This rooster is my other DD's. He is a little wild man too. He is a Silver Spangled Hamburg. She has a hen and rooster. So she at least got one hen. He also thinks he is hot stuff!! lol But he usually just chases the hens not us... The hen behind him is in one of the dust baths I have provided since they are in the barn. I put D.E and wood ashes in them. It helps keep lice and mites away.
He is fluffing his neck feathers out here.. He can make them stand straight out from his neck!! They look so funny when they do that. The Mottled Houdan was coming up behind him flapping his wings.. (pitch fork in the background is not left there for those of you concerned for our safety! it was being used to spread out hay and layed down to take pics!lol)
This is a Barred Rock rooster I am saving to put with the hens to get little Barred Rock Crosses for laying. He is a big guy but not to crazy! I think he is just beautiful!! I don't normally like the barred rock...
Here is our little Henny!! She is a banty, one of the 2 that were left after the neighbor's dog made a few visits!! She is very friendly and will sit on our arms or shoulder where ever we put her.. And she talks back to us!! lol She looks a little bald thanks to the roosters but its growing back!

Here is one of my silkie hens up next to my big rooster. She is little Not as little as some of the silkies but still small compared to other hens.
Here is a black silkie rooster and hen. The poor little hen you cant even see her eyes!!! Needless to say she isn't hard to catch! this was what my oldest DD picked for her chickens.. I want some more colors eventually....
The black hens in this pic are the Black Australorps. They are suppose to be good winter layers too. The eggs I have gotten so far are freckled!!! They are brown with darker brown spots.


This is what I do for my chickens...
They have fresh water available all the time! I also feed them Game Bird starter crumble mixed with poultry grains. It has no medication what so ever. They are eating less then 100 pounds a week its about every 10 days that I get feed for them.. I have right at 50 chickens. The amount depends on what they have access. With the cold that has moved in they don't venture as far so they are eating more closer. .I was going through more till I figured out that the ducks where helping themselves too!! Which the ducks get some too just not that much!!
My chickens also have free access to outside.They get to scratch through everything in the barn. Any little tasty bug or sprout goes to the chickens. They also have to share kitchen scraps with the pigs and cats.. We recently made applesauce and canned some and all the left over cores and peeling went to the pigs and chickens, they Loved Them!!! One things to remember about chickens is they are Omnivores Not Vegetarians!! They do need some form of protein bugs generally provide that in the wild.. Along with the plants and whatever else they may find. Sometimes you just have to not look at what they eat!!! lol
They are not locked up but do come back to the barn to roost right now. They use the gates to roost on and the front of the nest boxes. We do have a 2X4 wire around the bottom to keep the silkies in and the goats out!! We don't have to worry about predators because we have Livestock Guardian dogs that keep watch and we haven't lost any chickens since. They are not technically pastured as of yet... We are planning an that for next year. But they do free range alot..
I think the best animal to start with if you have never had any type of farm animals is the chicken. They aren't to hard to keep. We have always had some kind of chickens every since I was a kid. My mom and dad would take us to the local hatchery and get babies. Its one of those many childhood memories that I have passed down to my kids..
I am posting about the pigs tomorrow....

6 comments:

tree ocean said...

My kids looked over my shoulder and admired your great poultry! Chickens are fun!

My daughter wanted to say that your barred rock looks like ours and she wanted to say more but I am too lazy to type it all out. LOL.

Hot Belly Mama - taking it all back said...

Ooh, I want Ameruacanas! How do you keep your roosters from fighting? I keep reading that it's a big no-no to have more than one.

Evelyn said...

WOW!!! 50 chix to overwinter!!!
There won't be any bugs this Spring! And... you shouldn't have a shortage of eggs either. Are you getting enough to sell? How's the milk supply looking?
I just love Silkies. I'm also glad that the frizzle banty made it, they are so friendly! You have enough Mamas to raise up at least a few broods in Spring.
Glad to hear we have a pig post coming up. I've never had pigs! Also holding my breathe in anticipation of your next baby. How are your goats ligaments coming? She better let go soon, or I'll turn blue!

Mrs.Ruiz said...

Ididn't realize how funny their personalities are. I want a chicken:) That stuff you talk about to get rid of mites, if I put it in my grass will it kill the fleas?

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* Tonia said...

I dont know how the D.E would do for fleas. Its Diatomaceous(sp?) Earth.. It has to be food grade too. Some people say it works for fleas and some dont. I think its working for us as far as internal parasites.

Joanna said...

great pics and writeups, thank you