Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by mandylovespets, Apr 7, 2008.
OOPS!!! I meant I'm sooo new to all of this!...
DE is diatomaceous earth which is not a pesticide. Here is a link where it can be purchased. Food grade is the only type safe for chickens. They can even eat it! It kills lice and mites in the coop, nests, and on the chicken. It helps keep the coop dry because it absorbs moisture like crazy. It dries up their poo which keeps flies to a minimum.
Oh WOW!!! I was just wondering how you would prevent your chickens from getting mites and stuff!... Thank you so much for that info! Do you know if feed stores normally carry DE? How often should you put DE in the coop?
I can't get it even in the capital city of Mississippi! I ordered mine from the site I sent you. If it's not food grade, it will kill your chicken, so don't buy the kind that is used for cleaning pool filters for example. It is easier to get Sevin Dust for killing mites, but it's not safe for chickens to eat, so I like the food grade DE. You can use it every day if you like. I dust my chickens once a week. I use the deep litter method in my coop which you can read about in the FAQ section of the index. I sprinkle DE just before adding more pine shavings which I generally do once every two weeks. If any water spills in the coop, after I get the wet shavings out of the coop, I sprinkle the damp floor with food grade DE before adding pine shavings. Also, if the chickens poo on a shelf, after I get the poo up, I sprinkle the DE there, too. It cuts down the smell and dries the wood really quickly. I sprinkle it in the run after a rain, as well to discourage flies. I'm about to have my run covered to keep moisture to a minimum in the chickens' environment. Where ever your chickens take their dustbaths, you can stir in about a cup of food grade DE or Sevin Dust weekly if they don't like for you to dust them yourself! My Buff Orpingtons still don't like to be picked up, so I put the DE in their dustbath holes. They do a great job of covering themselves in the mixture! I use a tip MissPrissy gave a while back to sprinkle it around - pour some in the leg of an old pair of pantyhose. When you shake it, only a fine dusting is applied which means less waste! On water spills, I just sort of dump it out of a plastic cup for maximum absorption fast. Some folks say if you sprinkle it on the chickens' food, it will eliminate internal parasites. Other folks say it doesn't work. Mine eat probably about 1/2 tsp.per week apiece. I stir it into a tsp. of cooked oatmeal, a tsp. of probiotic plain yogurt, and chopped grapes or apple about once a week in individual little Glad or Ziplock bowls as a healthy treat for my flock.
I have two BO's named Henny and Penny. The only way you can tell them apart is by the size of their crest. They are the BEST chickens!! They are so sweet and social and they lay tons and tons of eggs. I bought them because when I did my research before getting into raising chickens, I found that BO's are good winter layers. In other words, they will continue to lay 5 eggs per week while my other chickens take time off during the short winter months. Mine are huge too, although they weren't any special brand when I bought them. Actually, all my original hens are huge because I was very good about feeding them the best food and added meal worms and crickets to their diet. I only have two other chickens that are as friendly as my BO's, my miniature Buff Dutch chicken and my Sicilian Buttercup (who I named what else, Buttercup!) I highly recommend getting the Buff Orpingtons and you'll be glad you did!! Heidi
Cool!!! Thanks everyone!!! I love this site!!! I'm sooo excited to be a new chicken mama !!!!!! I was supposed to pick up my BO chicks his week, but it turns out the feed store won't get them 'till Moday, DARN! Owell!!! If anyone wants to post some pics of your BO's I would be sooo happy to see them!!! Along with any tips and tricks of chicken parenting!!!! Thank you!!!
Naomi and Ruth
Ruth is about 9 months old and Naomi is 14 mo. old. I have had them for a month. Naomi lays an egg a day! Ruth is about through with her molting, so I am looking for her eggs just any day now.
AAAWWWW!!! They look like stuffed animals cuz they're sooo fluffy lol!! They're adorable!!! Do chicks/chickens do ok (how do they react) when you introduce new ones to the flock/brooder???.....
First of all, you should quarantine new birds to make sure they don't get disease symptoms before introducing them to your current flock. Lots of folks don't mix different ages together at all, but a few do successfully which is what I am doing. I am trying to make separate housing arrangements for my bantams and large fowl however because the large birds knock over the small birds food and water too often!
Existing birds tend to freak out when they meet new birds more than the other way around in my experience. New birds just react by showing a bit of fear and they seem a little lost if they're up in age a bit. Existing flock generally have the upper hand with new birds, so when introducing them it is best to separate them in the pen with chicken wire barriers until they get used to even just looking at one another. It is also a good idea to slip the new ones into the coop after the old ones are roosting. They don't see well in the dark (if at all), and a fight is not likely to start then. In the daytime, the first time you put them all together, it is best to let them all out of the pen to free range because they are all so busy scratching for insects and worms that they hardly notice each other! LOL! When the barrier is removed in the pen, I like to keep a close watch on them to be certain any disagreements appear to be normal pecking order behavior and to make sure no blood is drawn. If that should happen, either the attacker or the attackee should be put in an isolation pen if possible within the sight of all the others. If the attacked can be doctored simply by applying antiseptic and antibiotic ointment, the attacker is imprisoned. If the attacked bird is more seriously injured, it is placed in the "hospital" pen and a possible vet visit occurs.
Usually, I have experienced normal pecking order behavior. A rooster tries to keep peace in the coop and run and can work wonders with the top hen if she is overly aggressive. I only have one trouble maker, and she was my first hen. She is not mean to people, only new hens, and generally only at treat time. I let her out of the pen when I feed the others treats. It's working so far. Otherwise I depend on the rooster to protect the others, and he has only let me down once. No one died!
Your posts on this thread are SO helpful! I've printed them out for easy reference as we are just getting started with chickens. I think it would be great to have your posts in the general FAQ area as well. Your post on grit was news to me and probably would be to other newbies who are giving treats with starter feed only.
Thanks so much for all the great info!