Coop Project: Maken the Plunge & Getting Chickens

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Rock Home Isle, Apr 25, 2012.

  1. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    When the ducks show up for a handout, it can make the Chickens step-back and take notice...

    "Dang Bubbba, is it even safe to go in there and try to get anything with those two gobbling away??"

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2012
  2. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    "Shameless I tell ya...simply shameless."

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    Last edited: May 26, 2012
  3. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    It has always amazed me how sociable poultry can be...

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    If I give them their treat later in the day, they will usually go find a nice shady spot and take a short nap afterwards.

    Dang its good to have poultry again. [​IMG]

    (The little pullet right next to the base of the tree is my tiny skiddish girl)
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2012
  4. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    FINALLY![​IMG]

    It looks like the Cottonwood is done for the season...I CAN BREATH AGAIN. [​IMG]


    There were a few days here this spring where the cotton was so thick it literally looked like it was snowing outside. If it wasn't for the shade and comfort that that tree provides my home, I never would have let my son plant it. I once tried to kil the tree by over fertilizing it...it grew 12 feet that summer.

    Thank goodness it's only miserable for a few weeks each year....but its a miserable few weeks.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  5. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG]

    I was sitting out on the deck enjoying the fresh air and watching th flock graze across the yard. The cherries of the cherry trees are just starting to vhange colors and already the robins are bringing their nestlings in the trees and feeding them cherries...too dressed up for graduation ceremonies to go get the camera, so here are a few scenes of past year's feeding frenzies.

    [​IMG]

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    Not just the Robins get in on the act.

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    This little guy was just learning to fly when momma showed the way to the cherry trees. Still has fuzz on his head.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  6. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Upon My Soapbox:

    I was sitting with a friend after graduation today and we got to talking about different topics; our interests that we share; family that we wish to visit in the coming weeks and of course what we will be doing this summer. He will be traveling and enjoying his leasure time this summer and I will be working with some wonderful students and conducting research at the University of Northern Colorado (UNC).

    As we talked, my collegue indicated to me that he had heard that I was starting a small backyard poultry flock, so he explored the subject with me. He was under the impression that raising my own birds for eggs for my family was more economical than going to the store and buying commercial eggs. He was curious to know the facts and the details of my project. (I must talk to much...I'll try to fix that charactor flaw) I think I might have injured a plan of his when I responded and explained that it couldn't be further from the truth...Raising poultry on a small scale for your own consumption is not a finacially motivated descision. My project is a statement of philosophy and personal beliefs. These eggs that I hope someday to get from my pullets will not be cheap commercially mass produced eggs. The eggs won't possess a sickly yellow colored yolk with a bland pasty flavor that we all have become acustomed too. They are not the product of some venture capitalists that own controlling shares of stock in an Industrial Ag-Corporation that manages a cage based egg production business. With my project, I am making a statement against our modern manufacture of the food chain that we consume as a population and have come to think of as normal. I never thought that I would ever say or write those words...but after several years of research, reading, fact finding, and education, it is what I have come to believe.

    A couple of years ago I had a discussion with a group of my upper level students about modern genetics and commercial food production...Franken Food is the anti-term that has been used to describe these types of advancements in biotechnology that has integrated into our food chain. Personally I think that our technological advancements are simply amazing and our lives are going to be forever changed once there are just a few more breakthroughs in Nano-Technology. During the course of our discussion, I asked the class an open ended question, "Where does our food come from?" I was expecting reasoned and thoughtful responces about our modern agricultural system and manufacturing infrastructure...But what I recieved as a reply, "The Store..." Frustration can be almost a physical force and not just an emotion.

    I teach my students, but they also teach me. I like that arrangement very much. I have come to believe that there is a disconnect in our society. There are segments in our society that no longer understand that there is a point where a living animal becomes a carcass and then becomes food that we comsume. There is nothing bad about the cycle of life, but we are now raising several generations that do not understand this process. The eggs that my pullets will produce for me; for my family; will be the product of a healthy happy flock of poultry. My family, my children and at the moment several children in the neighborhood, will have a little closer connection to the process of food production and simple agriculture. These animals in my backyard are not machines that produce a consumable product and then discarded once they've reached their production limits. They are enjoyable living entities and it is fun to interact with them and observe them as they grow and live out a healthy life; while at the same time they produce eggs for my family; they controll bugs and pests on my property; and help to maintain and incorporate organic materials into my garden.

    Free Ranging our small flocks is a healthy way to take care of and maintain our little charges. If your flock is foraging and thriving off the living land then we have succeeded. When Commmercial Feed has been demoted from the position of a primary food source for our flock to just a suppliment to the flock's varied and nutritious diet...that is the goal of free ranging poultry. The eggs that our free ranged flock produces are proven to be more nutritious and healthy than their commercial counter parts... and our animals are happier & healthier than the commercial layers. But more importantly we have made a powerful and growing statement about what is important to us about our food sources for our families.

    Don't think less of me if you happen to disagree with my views. I'll now put my soapbox away for the moment....
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2012
    3 people like this.
  7. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Poultry Project Costs 2012

    Coop Construction Materials
    Lowes April 4th 2012 $11.69
    Uncle Benny’s April 5th 2012 $12.96
    Home Depot April 5th 2012 $286.70
    Uncle Benny’s April 6th 2012 $15.56
    Home Depot April 14th 2012 $52.02
    Home Depot April 15th 2012 $12.32
    Lowes April 26th 2012 $59.49
    Ace Hardware April 28th 2012 $13.30
    Lowes May 5th 2012 $55.90
    Home Depot May 12th 2012 $12.25
    Lowes May 26th 2012 $23.79
    Total $555.98

    Poultry Costs
    ***Blue Swedish Ducklings 2 @ $4.32 each $8.64
    ***Buff Orpington Pullets 6 @ $3.00 each $18.00
    Bomgaars $40.96
    Bomgaars $47.57
    Jaxx $19.21
    Bomgaars $20.94
    Bomgaars $62.20
    Bomgaars $58.09
    Jaxx $35.10
    Bomgaars $16.48
    Total $300.55

    *** Direct poultry costs have been broken out from receipts and posted

    The numbers posted for the Poultry Costs are highly inflated. I thought that my wife was keeping the reciepts for me to go through and peruse at a later date. NO...she was writing down the reciept amounts in the register and then shredding the actual reciepts...so included in the poultry costs are items such as Mother's Day gifts, flowers, a few trees, flash lights, fishing equipment and all the little odds and ends that every chicken just can't wait to play with on a hot summer's day...DANG. [​IMG]

    The coop construction numbers are very accurate. I didn't buy any off-the-list items at those places and times; I was on a mission. And when you take into account that quite a few of the materials that we used in building the coop were donated & free items and that my time & my father's time were essentially free...that coop is pretty fricken costly. OMG!
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  8. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    Oh you have spent a lot less than me :oops:

    My brooder alone cost around $150.. I keep a spreadsheet of expenses. I sell enough eggs to pay for feed, and that leaves me satisfied. It is the only recurring cost it seems.
     
  9. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    I saw this posted in another thread and the information is just to awesome to risk me forgetting where I saw it. So rather than risk loosing it:

    TDN = Total Digestible Nutrients

    NEm = Net Energy of Maintenance

    NEg = Net Energy of Gain

    CP = Crude Protein

    NDF = Neutral Detergent Fiber

    ADF = Acid Detergent Fiber

    Table 1. Nutrient content of various feed grains (NRC, 1996).


    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    Corn Barley Wheat Oats Sorghum
    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    TDN, % 90 88 88 77 82
    NEm, Mcal/lb 1.02 0.94 0.99 0.84 0.91
    NEg, Mcal/lb 0.70 0.64 0.68 0.55 0.61
    CP, % 9.8 13.2 14.2 13.6 12.6
    Escape Protein, % of CP 55 27 23 17 57
    NDF, % 10.8 18.1 11.8 29.3 16.1
    ADF, % 3.3 5.8 4.2 14.0 6.4
    -----------------------------------------------------------------




    Table 2. Mineral content of major feed grains (NRC, 1996).
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Corn Barley Wheat Oats Sorghum
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Calcium, % 0.03 0.05 0.05 0.01 0.04
    Phosphorus, % 0.32 0.35 0.44 0.41 0.34
    Potassium, % 0.44 0.57 0.40 0.51 0.44
    Magnesium, % 0.12 0.12 0.13 0.16 0.17
    Sodium, % 0.01 0.01 0.01 0.02 0.01
    Sulfur, % 0.11 0.15 0.14 0.21 0.14
    Copper, ppm 2.5 5.3 6.5 8.6 4.7
    Iron, ppm 54.5 59.5 45.1 94.1 80.8
    Manganese, ppm 7.9 18.3 36.6 40.3 15.4
    Selenium, ppm 0.14 - 0.05 0.24 0.46
    Zinc, ppm 24.2 13.0 38.1 40.8 0.99
    Cobalt, ppm - 0.35 - 0.06 -
    Molybdenum, ppm 0.60 1.16 0.12 1.70 -
    ----------------------------------------------------------




    Table 3. Nutrient content of corn using different harvest, storage,
    or processing methods.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Escape
    Dry TDN, NEm, NEg, Protein,
    Corn Type Matter % Mcal/lb Mcal/lb CP, % % of CP
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Dry Rolled Corn 86 90 1.02 0.70 9.8 60
    Ear Corn 87 83 0.92 0.62 9.0 60
    Steam Flaked Corn 82 94 1.06 0.73 10.0 45
    High Moisture Corn 75 90 1.02 0.70 10.0 40
    High Moisture Ear Corn 75 83 0.92 0.62 8.7 40
    High Moisture Snapped Corn 74 81 0.90 0.59 8.8 40
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
     
  10. Rock Home Isle

    Rock Home Isle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well Its done...Finally. [​IMG]

    I finished the run today and now its just cleanup and then onto the next project..
     

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