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ChickensChickens

Chickens

September/October 2019

Chickens, a bimonthly magazine from the editors of Hobby Farms, , provides expert advice about the nutrition, health, care and comfort of keeping a single backyard bird or a large country flock, as well as the care, collection and consumption of their eggs and meat

País:
United States
Idioma:
English
Editor:
EG Media
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access_time1 min.
let’s talk!

Lisa Steele is the creator of Fresh Eggs Daily (www.fresheggs daily.com) and the author of several books including Gardening with Chickens and her newly released 101 Chicken Keeping Hacks. A fifth-generation chicken-keeper and master gardener, Steel lives on a small farm in Maine with her husband, two dogs, indoor/ outdoor barn cat, and flock of assorted chickens and ducks. If you have a question, email chickens@chickensmagazine.com , with “Flock Talk” as the subject. We’ll select our favorites and publish them in upcoming issues.…

access_time4 min.
pull what?

Q. What is a pullet? I hear the term frequently referring to a chicken, but I’m not quite sure exactly what it means. A. Technically, a pullet is a female chicken younger than 1 years of age. Sometimes you might hear the term “started pullets,” which refers to young birds past the chick stage and almost to POL (point of lay), which is usually in the 18- to 24-week timeframe. Lots of people like to buy started hens so they don’t have to wait as long for eggs. Personally, I wouldn’t want to miss the chick stage for anything! They’re so cute, and you get to control their environment and diet from day one. You will also end up with a friendlier flock if you hand-raise and handle them right from the…

access_time1 min.
scots dumpy

Dumpies used to be known as Bakies, Crawlers & Creepers. This ancient breed comes from Scotland and may have existed 700 years ago! Dumpies have a dwarfing gene, which produces their unique short legs, similar to the Dexter cow and the Japanese bantam. This makes dumpies great backyard birds, as they won’t scratch up the grass or garden. This docile breed comes in a variety of colors with the most common being black, cuckoo, white and blue. Comb, face, wattles and earlobes are bright red. Beak, legs and feet are white, except in the black variety where they should be black or slate, and in the cuckoo, mottled. Dumpies have large, low, heavy bodies, which is longer in the back than other breeds. A bantam size is also available. Because of…

access_time6 min.
being good stewards

Chickens come in all shapes and sizes, and along with them, their keepers! It’s difficult to imagine that any two chicken-keepers tend to their charges in exactly the same way; we all have our unique style that lends itself to everything from the way we design our coops to the basket in which we carry our eggs into the kitchen. Of course, there are a few universal truths: Feeding our flocks, for instance, and protecting them from predators are tasks we can all agree are critical factors to being a “good” chicken-keeper. But how we go about even those important chores is unique to each of us. Let’s look at some of the ways we can be our best chicken-keeping selves, preserving our own unique way of caring for our flock. 1.…

access_time7 min.
free water = free time

When you go out to eat, the first thing the wait staff offers you is water. You can live 40 days without food but only four days without water. Your chickens won’t last that long. They need from a half-pint to a whole pint a day depending on the season. To keep your chickens happy, you need a reliable watering system that stays unfrozen, mosquito-free, sort of clean, and topped up when you’re busy or away. So when my wife, Chris, announced that she wanted chickens, I knew that as the “facilities manager” I would be responsible for setting up the coop and all the furnishings such as the waterer. I naively thought that reading a few books and employing the standard practices would suffice. But several authors all said the…

access_time8 min.
under cover

Growing cover crops offers many benefits, including reducing soil erosion, controlling weeds, adding nutrients to the soil and reducing soil compaction. Chicken farmers can receive double benefits when they supplement their flocks’ feed with cover crops the chickens like to eat. Whether your chickens are in an enclosed pen or free-range in an open pasture, growing cover crops provides a low-impact, environmentally friendly way to supplement your chicken’s feed that’s sustainable and economical. Chickens eat all daylong, so give them something good to eat with a variety of cover crops that offer a diverse menu of nutrient rich food for your foraging flock. Growing Cover Crops You can plant a single cover crop for your chickens to eat or create a blend of crops they’ll enjoy even more. No matter what crop(s) you…

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