Articles from azygous

Just as school officials often overlook the importance of dealing with the victim of bullying in a school situation, we chicken folk often neglect the importance of dealing with the victim of bullying in our flocks. We get distracted by the aggression and disruption bullying causes, while the victim is often neglected as she sinks further into a permanent state of victim-hood. This has the effect of perpetuating the bullying by even more individuals than just the original bully and causing...
On December 18, 2015, a friend and I embarked on a long trip of several hundred miles to pick up a two-year old Buff Orpington hen at an animal shelter where she had been brought after a neighbor discovered her all alone and the rest of her flock dead. The owner apparently had moved and abandoned his chickens to fend for themselves. I named her Edith. I knew it wasn't going to be a stroll on a sunny beach integrating this strange hen into my flock. Chickens wrote the book on xenophobia. I...
My early brooders Six years ago when I got my second batch of day-old baby chicks, I thought I had arrived at the ultimate solution for a brooder. I had just joined BYC and stumbled onto a thread where everyone was lamenting how scared of them their chicks were. I saw that the one thing everyone, including me, had in common was we were raising our chicks in a brooder placed on the floor, and it required bending over the top of the box and reaching down inside to handle the chicks. The...
Diagnosing the crop disorder A hen is behaving lethargically, not eating much, if at all, but she has a full crop. This is the first sign something's not right. The full crop points to this hen having crop issues and not being sick for some other reason such as a bacterial infection, which would result in loss of appetite and empty crop. Before you treat for a crop issue, though, you need to verify that your hen or roo actually has a crop issue and whether it's sour crop or impacted crop or...
Each spring I see countless cries for help from people with a day-old baby chick who is terrorizing the other chicks in the brooder, pecking at their eyes or plucking out their down. It's automatically assumed that this is a bad “egg” and the chick is evil. It's happened to me, and it makes you feel helpless when you encounter it. Actually, it's not at all uncommon. Baby chicks have nervous systems and react to stimuli, and just like us humans, some are more sensitive than others and...
Hi you all! I just discovered I had this page! Now I'll have to put stuff on it! More to come soon! I keep forgetting I have this space to post about life at high altitude raising chickens. Just to give you an idea of what we do on a nice-weather day in mid-January in the Rockies, here's a taste: The weather warmed up and I've been going like a fiend, trying to get as much done as possible before the freezing cold returns, along with more snow, which is coming tomorrow. I went cow pie...
Five years ago, just three weeks after bringing four new Speckled Sussex baby chicks home from the local feed store, I found one had suffered a terrible injury. The skin on the entire back of her tiny head had been neatly removed. Not just a laceration leaving a flap of skin, but she was missing an area the size of a dime. It was all the more frightening because her thin, little hide seemed to “float”, not appearing to be anchored to the membrane underneath. The four three-week old babies...
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