Thursday, May 24, 2012
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Saturday, May 19, 2012
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Friday, April 20, 2012
First and foremost be prepared and buy all your supplies before you bring home chicks. See list for suggested supplies.
Large plastic tub or metal livestock trough. I like the plastic tubs with wheels , easier to drag them outside for cleaning.
Bedding, I like wood pellets over shavings as they don't clog up the waterers as much as shavings.
Paper towels, I use these over the wood pellets for the 1st few days. You can sprinkle food on paper towels until chicks figure out where feeders are. Newly shipped chicks that don't find food and water quickly will weaken and die.
Waterers, come in different sizes. Chicks need a continuous supply of fresh clean water. I use a quail size base for the 1st few days as tiny day olds can drown in larger sizes. Use marbles in your base if it is larger to prevent drowning. Never thought much of this until I found several day old chicks drowned one morning!
I keep an extra waterer ready so I can just switch them out in the morning as I start work early , this saves time when I am busy.
Heat lamp with red bulb, keep an extra bulb as bulbs always seem to go out on the coldest night. I usually keep a few extra white bulbs as they are much less expensive and will do in a pinch. Be sure to secure these well as they will start a fire if they fall into tub. Only heat one side of tub as chicks need a place to escape from heat. If chicks are panting and far apart they are too hot. If piled into a heap they are to cold. If sleeping next to each other in a single layer you have the temp just right.
Chick food, you can use either medicated ( for coccidiosis ) or unmedicated, I like to use gamebird starter as it has higher protein and more vitamins.
I don't use chick grit as I get my chicks out on soil as soon as possible. However if chicks do not have access to outdoors they will need grit to grind up any whole grains they are fed ( scratch included ) If you have sandy soil you can sprinkle a little on food.
Other supplements that are nice to have on hand, water soluble vitamins to make up for any deficits in parents diet, electrolytes to give your new chicks a boost, especially if shipped.
Special note on shipped birds, I always take a kit to the post office when picking up birds. I have scissors to open box, food and water. Every minute counts when your chicks have been at the mercy of the post office for two days or more. An extra 30 min in your car can mean the difference between life and death! I open box and offer food and water immediately.
Most of all have fun with your new babies, the more they are handled the tamer they will be. Don't expect friendly birds if they are not brought up as pets, especially roosters! Once your chicks have fully feathered out at 4 to 6 weeks they can go outdoors as long as they have shelter.
Saturday, April 14, 2012
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Splash x Black = 100% Blue
Splash x Blue = 50% Blue 50% Splash
Black x Blue = 50% Blue 50% Black
Blue x Blue = 50% Blue 25% Black 25% splash
Splash x Splash = 100% Splash
Black x Black = 100% Black
Lavender is a different gene . It is recessive so can be hidden . You need two sets , one from each parent. I keep Black hens with my Lav flock as black are thought to improve the type and feather quality . A Black split is a black bird carrying a hidden Lav gene. I will be breeding my lavs to Black English Orps this year to get bigger fluffier birds.
Below are the results you can expect from various combinations of black and lav breedings.
Lav x Lav = 100% Lav
Lav x Black split = 50% Lav 50% splits
Black split x Black split = 50% splits 25 % Lav 25 % Blacks
Lav x Black = 100% Black splits
Black split x Black = 100% Black
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
The Birchen Marans are doing well but more boys than girls so once they grow out I will offer 1 or 2 for sale. They would be great to breed with solid Blue Marans to start a Blue Birchen project ( I had planned to do this before I lost my Marans flock ).
New arrivals this week will be Lemon Cuckoo Orpingtons chicks and a breeding pair pure English ( Pricilla Middleton lines ) and Gold laced, Silver laced Brahmas ( Dan Powell lines ) . These are to start my own breeding flocks with but I may have a few to share once they have grown out a little.
I am also offering hatching eggs at this time in limited numbers, 2$ per egg. No guarantees on eggs hatching as anything could happen to them between my house and your incubator of broody hen.