Our Non-Human Animal Friends

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by urglik, Feb 26, 2017.

  1. urglik

    urglik

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    many of us live with non humans. i resist referring to them as animals like we are not.
    it's about respect and humility. they can't build the james webb telescope.
    but what does this mean? to often our conclusion removes us from that which sustains us.

    our friends are many things. loving, silly, grouchy, hungry, sleepy. they are individuals.

    i like watching them. like this fellow does. a good way to learn about others.

    https://christiannawroth.wordpress.com/
    rigourously scientific. what does he do? he stares at goats...
    here is an example of yoolie goat demonstrating the results of christian's recent goat study.

    asking for help with an impossible task like reaching more honey locust leaves.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
    urglik, Feb 26, 2017
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  2. urglik

    Gemma

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    Thank you for starting this thread, I love sharing about our pets
    Are your goats always free to roam? How do you care for them in -o weather?

    I wanted chickens but by the time I was done researching the subject, I realized raising chicken wasn't as simple as I first thought ...I'm surrounded by wildlife, and keeping them safe from predators would have been a task
    ....Maybe some day when I'm older and no longer work I could consider a few farm friends, but for now I just enjoy other people's :)
     
    Gemma, Feb 26, 2017
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  3. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    We had our Rosie, until we had to put her down this past September. She was 14+ years old. She truly was a member of the family, and we still miss her.
    001Rosie 12-24-10.jpg

    We also have our chickens, and will be getting 7 more next week.
    chick2.jpg

    150.jpg
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 26, 2017
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  4. urglik

    sissy sissy

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    I lost my king arthur july 27th and pickles was born august 27th but believe me he is not a reincarnate of the king .Ye is totally different .He is afraid of everything and he picks on pee wee and that does not go over well since pee wee is a hero
     
    sissy, Feb 26, 2017
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  5. urglik

    Tula

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    @MoonShadows , I love your chicken coop. Your Rosie looks very sweet, condolences on her passing.

    @sissy , I remember your King Arthur, I'm so sorry he passed.
     
    Tula, Feb 26, 2017
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  6. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    MoonShadows, Feb 26, 2017
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  7. urglik

    Gemma

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    I love your chicken coop!
    I have a lot of questions about chickens...How long does it take for a baby chick to reach maturity and produce eggs? Is it true that chicken only make eggs for 2 years and then stop? How do you keep them warm in the winter?
     
    Gemma, Feb 27, 2017
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  8. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    Hens will start laying eggs at around 20 weeks...give or take. Hens are most productive in their first two years or so and then slow down, but I have a few hens that are over 3 that still lay eggs. In the winter you do not have to keep them warm. Chickens are actually better adapted to the cold than to the heat. The most important thing is to keep them out of drafts, but to keep plenty of fresh air in their coop. They produce a tremendous amount of ammonia in their poop, and it is bad for their lungs. They also produce a tremendous amount of moisture from respiration, and if they do not have proper ventilation, their combs and wattles can actually become frost bitten.
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 27, 2017
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  9. urglik

    Gemma

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    MoonShadows, Thank you so much for all that info, I want to learn all I can, so that if someday I decide to raise them I'll be taking good care of them. :)
     
    Gemma, Feb 27, 2017
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  10. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    A great source to learn about raising chickens, the place where I learned so much of what I know, is www.backyardchickens.com

    They have a learning center with all kinds of information and a great forum.
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 27, 2017
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  11. urglik

    Tula

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    Wow, looked through the build of your coop and it's amazing! Do you ever have predators? I specifically wondered if any could enter the coop through the vent holes? I love your idea to add raised beds and use their manure as fertilizer.
     
    Tula, Feb 27, 2017
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  12. urglik

    TAHOE

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    I have had a few that were laying eggs till they were almost 5 yrs old. Just like a human female, they are born with a certain number of egg follicles which develop into eggs to lay over their lifetime. I find most of our young ones do start laying at 5-6 months old also.
    I just bought 15- 2week old chicks this weekend, I am down to 5 hens and need to replenish the flock, lets just say I hope I took care of the raccoon problem.
    We too have a zoo, 3 dogs, cat. 2 chinchillas, 2 goats, rabbits, chickens, aquarium/pond, and various snakes & a gecko.
     
    TAHOE, Feb 27, 2017
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  13. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    The hens get locked in the coop every night. We free range them on the property, and they return each night on their own before dusk. The windows and the vent holes have hardware cloth over them (heavy wire mesh 1/4" x 1/4") to deter predators, and the chicken door at the coop and the run get closed. The one to the coop is an automatic door that opens at sunrise and closes at sunset. The door to the run is on a long rope up to our deck, and I open that each morning and close it each evening.

    The first year we had them, we always kept them in the house and the run. Starting the 2nd year, we decided to free range them on the property so they would have more room and get better nourishment (seeds, bugs, worms, etc.). We had little predator problems until last year. We lost 1 or 2 here and there...either to a fox or a hawk...all we would find is a bunch of feathers scattered in one spot. Then, last summer, we had a Saturday massacre. We came home from the grocery store to find 3 hens gone and the rooster dead down in the field. He must have put up some fight because there was a trail of feathers up one side of the field and down the other. We found him dead with his neck ripped open. He must have bled out. Whenever one gets taken by a predator, they get nervous and hang out in the coop and run...and, we keep them locked in for at least a week to make sure the predator knows the free lunch is over. It's always upsetting, but it is part and parcel for free ranging chickens. They have a happier life and get much better nutrition than any chicken food you could provide.

    We started with 16 3 years ago; we gave two roosters away and two new ones were born. One chicken had to be put to death and another one just dropped dead one day...not a scratch on her. We now have 3 - 3 year old hens. We are planning to get 7 - 17 week old hens next week. Right now I am splitting the run in two and will build a small temporary coop in the 2nd half for the new hens where they will live for a week to 10 days while our old hens and the new ones get used to each other. Slowly, we will introduce them to each other, and that will cut down on any severe squabbling...you know "hen pecking" and the "pecking order". It is serious chicken business.

    This is a pic of a bunch of them from early last spring sitting on the beams that we were to use for the foundation of our greenhouse. (We had dug it out before winter, but they scratch a bunch of dirt back in!) Notice the rooster is standing and observing. Roosters take good care of the hens...watching for problems, making warning calls when a problem is spotted, directing them to food, and letting them eat before he does. It is absolutely amazing to raise. The ones pictured here are: Delawares (white), Barred Rock (gray and black lines), New Hampshire Reds (tan), Jersey Giants (black), and Golden Wyandottes (black and tan). All lay brown eggs. (BTW...there are no difference between white and brown eggs. Many people think brown eggs are better for you, but it is not true. And, fresh farm eggs have much more nutrition and less cholesterol than store bought ones.)

    006.jpg
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 27, 2017
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  14. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    I would love to get a few pigs, goats and alpacas, but every time I bring up getting some more animals, I get voted down by "the boss". :cautious:
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 27, 2017
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  15. urglik

    TAHOE

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    That auto door would be a neat setup to see. I have to manually lock mine in the barn every night, if I remember.

    I used to try to free range, but we have two huge owls, two really big hawks and now a pair of bald eagles that have taken up nesting at the river a 1/2 mile away from the house. I use the chain link panels from two large dog kennels as the coop.
    My predator issue has almost always been raccoons. I trapped and killed 5 last May after they grabbed 6 young roosters and hens, took out another big coon last month after losing another 3 hens. I plan to "fortitify" my coop a little better this year, may also run a few strand of hot wire around the coop as a deterrent.

    I just picked up some Rhody Reds, Black austrolorps, Black Giants, americaunas and buff orpingtons. I think the Buffs are the most friendly, gentle chickens there are, almost all I have had are like bet dogs.
    My young rooster is going to be in seven heaven when these new girls come into the flock this summer(y):)

    We were given our first 24 back in 2007 I think. My mom had symptoms of macular degeneration with her eyesight. She starting eating at least 1 fresh egg everyday and within a year her eyes actually got better, the eggs was the only change in her diet.
    My sister bakes wedding and birthday cakes, she uses fresh eggs. People say her cakes tastes the best and are the moistest they have ever had.
    I like the green ones myself;)
     
    TAHOE, Feb 27, 2017
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  16. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    There are a number of automatic chicken doors on the market. Some are cheaper, some not. Some work better, some not. We went with this one: https://adorstore.com/products/ador1-automatic-chicken-door

    The hens we are getting are Red Sex Link Hens. They are hybrids. I like heritage chickens better...like you just got, but it is hard to find 17 week old heritage chickens, and when you do, they are usually twice as much. I don't feel like starting with chicks again since there could be more problems with my present hens since the chicks will be "foreign" to them.

    Sounds like with all those predators you have, you really can't free range if you want to keep chickens.
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 27, 2017
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  17. urglik

    MoonShadows The Jam Man

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    BTW...if you want to go more inexpensive, you can buy parts and make an automatic door yourself.
     
    MoonShadows, Feb 27, 2017
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  18. urglik

    Gemma

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    You're living my dream, I would love to have a barn where the animals live cage free together....but I have way too many predators
    I'd love to see pics, if you have them :)

    I have 2 dogs, 1 African Gray parrot and my koi pond...that's all I can afford with my work schedule
     
    Gemma, Feb 27, 2017
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  19. urglik

    sissy sissy

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    My dad used chickens on his organic farm ,great for pest control and fertilizer .I used to love to watch them root the soil around .It was the cutest thing ever .
     
    sissy, Feb 27, 2017
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  20. urglik

    Gemma

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    I'm truly enjoying all that you've posted, thank you! :)
     
    Gemma, Feb 27, 2017
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