Chicken Breed Focus - New Hampshire

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by sumi, Oct 1, 2015.

  1. DuginMT

    DuginMT Chirping

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    Mar 17, 2013
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    My Coop
    We have one New Hamshire in our mixed flock of 17. My youngest son named her Amelia after red-haired Amelia Erhart that he learned about in school. Amelia is now 7 1/2 months old. She is the only chicken in our flock that you can pick up while they are free-ranging. She is the friendliest and follows me around about a foot from my feet looking for treats! I would say she fits in well in the flock, falling somewhere in the middle of the pecking order. She started laying at 22 weeks but I can't state her egg production as we have 15 brown egg layers. She probably does well at laying. Very happy with this bird and hope to get a few more in the future, if she does well over her first Montana winter!
     
  2. dima guy

    dima guy In the Brooder

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    Oct 25, 2015
    Nice birds ....i have a rooster and four sweet ladies ...they adorable and handsome....my concern is winter....any advice is welcome
     
  3. Latestarter

    Latestarter Free Ranging

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    Mar 18, 2014
    North East Texas
    Hey there @dima guy [​IMG]! I live on the front range in Colorado. Last winter we had a 2 week period with night temps of 10-15 below zero. Couple of things you need to address in freezing weather, especially with large combed birds, but more or less with all of them:

    1. Moisture is a killer! Combine cold with wet and it's a recipe for sick/dead birds. You need as much ventilation as you can get, without causing...
    2. Drafts/cold wind directly on your birds... You NEED the ventilation, but it's best if you have incoming air down low away from where the birds roost, and out-flowing air high up above where the birds roost. Natural convection (heat rises) will carry moisture (bird sweat if you will) up, away, and out of the coop. The droppings (poop) in the litter are not a huge concern right now as they will be freezing solid and not be an issue (moisture) until they thaw, but then moisture won't be as much of an issue (no longer freezing). chickens will survive in 40 below temps outside as long as they aren't wet and there's little wind. They have a natural down/feather blanket covering them remember?
    3. Even low amounts of moisture in very cold air can cause frostbite on your bird's combs, wattles and toes.... kinda just like on humans if you substitute ears for combs and noses/chins for wattles. Rub/wipe/smear/coat/cover the combs and wattles with a petroleum based/oil based substance like Vaseline/bag balm/Vitamin A&D/even triple antibiotic. They won't like it, trust me, but they'll benefit from it. Do NOT use water based products! We're trying to prevent moisture on the birds skin surface, which will freeze.
    4. Look at your roosts... chicken paws are not really designed to grip/perch like a wild bird. Though they can, it's not best. If they have a flat(er) larger surface they can lower themselves down on, and cover their toes with feathers, then you don't have to worry so much about frostbitten/frozen toes.
    5. Cold weather means heavier energy consumption to keep warm... just like for us. I tend to up the fat content in their food a little during winter to give them more to burn off and keep warm. Remember... it takes protein to burn fat, so upping that a bit is also a good thing.

    Hope this helps! Good luck!
     
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  4. dima guy

    dima guy In the Brooder

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    Oct 25, 2015
    Many thanks [@]Latestarter[​IMG]I live in jordan -middle east my farm is in the north where it reaches 10-15 below zero...your advice is so helpful...the coop is not drafty but well ventilated..and am feeding them fremented food so their poop is a kind of solid...and i apply internal bedding system using woodscrap and hay.will start applying vaslin soon when freezing temps start....
    I have a concern about protine....the ready feed mixes in the markets here in Jordan have dried blood and other nasty staff...i am trying to stay organic so i mix their feed (wheat barley crashed corn flaxeed semseme seeds and sunflowe seeds) plus treats all kinds of veggies according to the season now it is season for spinach and cabbage (they love both) what can i feed them for more protine and energy
    * one of my ladies start giving eggs two weeks ago and two of them started yesterday [​IMG]

    Need to till you thay BYC is a life saver for me
     
  5. Latestarter

    Latestarter Free Ranging

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    Mar 18, 2014
    North East Texas
    Welcome! Very nice to have you here with us! Congratulations on finally receiving eggs from your girls! It is exciting right? I am not familiar with what is available where you are to supplement their feed. However, protein is protein... such things as fish and fish parts. Those parts that are not routinely eaten by humans such as the heads and tails. The same goes for red meat... If there is a meat shop nearby, you can ask them for the residue from their meat saw... a mixture of bone meal (calcium) and the proteins of the blood, meat and marrow,and whatever fat is included. Also at the meat shop, you could get the fat trimmings that are discarded and hang them for the birds to peck at. I have bought cheap canned fish such as mackerel at the store and given them that. If you butcher your own animals, you can give the internal organs and whatever trimmings you would normally discard to the chickens... they will eat what they will eat and the remainder can be buried in the garden in spring along with the old used winter bedding. Even table scraps from your family's meals... left over meat scraps etc.

    I'm sorry I couldn't be of more help, but you are there and I am 1/2 a world away. [​IMG] Stay warm!
     
  6. DuginMT

    DuginMT Chirping

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    Mar 17, 2013
    Billings, MT
    My Coop
    I have one NH hen in my mixed flock of 16. She is 11 months old, and a good layer. She is near the top of the pecking order, and is very inquisitive and friendly. She is one of the three that follows us around in the yard, wanting treats. The other two are a speckled sussex and a white rock. We can usually reach down and pick her right up. We love our "Amelia"!
     
  7. Minniechickmama

    Minniechickmama Senora Pollo Loco

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    Sep 4, 2009
    Minnesota
    I have been breeding NHs for about 4 years and I do enjoy them very much. I also have been breeding Buckeyes for a little longer. I find them comparable in weight at about 6-7 months, but find the Buckeyes do fill out with muscle more earlier on. The frame of the NH is larger and the legs (drums) are not as full as the Buckeyes. That being said, I find them a very productive bird as a dual purpose they are second only to my Buckeyes, and a very close second. I do find their combs much more difficult to manage in the cold we get here in Minnesota.
     
  8. Triplecross

    Triplecross Chirping

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    Jan 6, 2013
    Southern Michigan
    I just bought my first set of NH chicks from a woman in Ohio. They are now 2 months old and I really like this breed for their friendly nature and future meat/ egg abilities! I've had several breeds in the past and the NH are extra friendly [​IMG]
     
  9. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Crowing

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    Sep 25, 2015
    Thew roosters ge fat
     
  10. newhamplover

    newhamplover Chirping

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    Mar 27, 2016
    Okla.
    Hi, I just joined yesterday although I have been on here for a couple of years. I have 3 New Hamps & 7 more in the making, I hope. I love this breed. I got mine a couple of years ago from Bill Braden in Okla. They are the sweetest, most calm breed & very intelligent. They free roam & are just a delight. I would hate the thought of going out or looking out & not seeing my chickens. Everyone who sees them says they don't act like chickens. They meet & greet everyone who comes. I think they are such a beautiful breed & I wonder why there are not more of them. I have been around chickens most of my life. My Grandpa always had chickens & ducks, they roosted with the chickens, & would go to the pond everyday when he let the chickens out....then come back in the evening. I don't think my Grandpa ever bought a store egg.

    I really enjoy seeing the pics you put up of this breed & would like to learn more about them. My life has always revolved around animals. 34 years in horses, barrel racing & a few years showing dogs. Could not imagine not having some kind of critters.
     

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