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Hello from Australia

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by firefowl, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. firefowl

    firefowl Chirping

    Dec 31, 2013
    Temperate Australia
    I am from down under and have just got into raising chickens after spending my entire life in smaller and smaller suburban properties. When I was a kid we have some ducks in an enclosed area but they flew around everywhere and were really messy. We ended slaughtering and eating them and since then I haven't had any birds or livestock at all, only dogs and cats, etc.

    Currently I'm in a small rental property with a small backyard, maybe 50m3 of grass if that. I've been thinking about chickens and livestock for a while now as in about a year I'll be moving to a more rural and larger property. Recently I saw a triangular rabbit hatch at a car boot sale for $50. It was quite worn but fairly well built, it had held up quite well and still was very functional. I bargained the seller down to $35 and drove it home hanging out the back of my small hatchback, lucky I only had to drive for 2-3 mins.

    It's fairly small-ish as it's meant for rabbits but I figured it would be big enough for 2 bantams. However I ended up getting one full size black Australorp hen and a white Pekin bantam hen. They were both purchased at about 6 weeks old from separate breeders as pure breds, both were $15. The Australorp came from a fairly hectic and crowded place and is very skittish. The Pekin is much tamer and can be easily handled unlike the Australorp. They get along quite well with each other despite the size difference. The Australorp will cheep repeteadly if they are seperated. If I try to pickup the Australorp it will make a lot of noise and try to escape, this was made worse by an accident that had it's neck trapped in the cage door for a couple seconds.

    I cut out the bottom of the rabbit hutch as it was all wire so the chickens could have some grass in their small run. It takes them less than 2 weeks to devour a lush patch of grass into a desert wasteland. I bought them on the first week of December and already have moved the wheel-less 'chicken tractor' to a new location. The only other modifications I did was install a hook in the roof of the shelter to suspend the water bottle in and attached some mesh in the entrance to the shelter to enable me to use the 'deep litter method'. The shelter is about 50cm long and the run is about 70cm long, when they are fully grown there will be enough room for both to fully stretch their wings within the shelter but I do plan to free range them when they are big enough to withstand our cat. I also plan to install a roost in the shelter that they can sleep on.

    I feed them organic vegetable scraps, soft boiled eggs, yoghurt, kefir or curds for protein and a certified organic pullet crumble in the morning and evening. They seem to mainly eat grass though. One time as I was removing some droppings and washed my hands I saw some thin black worms on the concrete. I determined that these were parasites which were present in the feces. After this I started adding food grade DE whenever I added more litter to the shelter and put a 1/4 of a teaspoon mixed in their crumble. Haven't checked yet if they still have these parasite. I also add a small amount of organic ACV to their water and a crushed garlic clove.

    I plan to raise the Australorp for eggs and possibly slaughter it once it's egg laying days are finished. The Pekin I'm keeping as a pet with any eggs it produces being a bonus. I may purchase a bigger chicken tractor coop and get a third chicken in the near future, possibly another full-size laying hen. When I move to my new property I'll acquire a much bigger and better coop/run although I see the advantage of the chicken tractor. It can be forever moved around to fertile grounds whereas the earth below a permanent coop will be constantly degraded.

    I like the idea of keeping chickens biodynamically and naturally rather than the conventional methods most people use. I worked as a "chicken catcher" for a day for a massive chicken supplier and the conditions were quite horrendous, almost enough to put someone off chicken forever. I believe in taking responsibility for what I consume therefore battery farming wouldn't exist if everyone kept and slaughtered their own chickens humanely themselves rather than buying chickens slaughtered inhumanely who lived their entire lives indoors without seeing the sun or grass.




    Last edited: Dec 31, 2013

  2. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
  3. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! You have beautiful chickens! :) :) :)
  4. [​IMG]
    Happy New Year! :)
  5. NinjaRooster

    NinjaRooster Crowing

    Dec 27, 2013
    The Corner
    pretty bird(s)! pretty bird(S)!
  6. Happy New Years [​IMG] ....

    Good looking birds ..[​IMG]

    gander007 [​IMG]
  7. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    [​IMG] to BYC!

    Great to have you aboard and enjoy BYC!

  8. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Welcome to BYC - good luck with your poultry plans.
  9. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 Free Ranging Premium Member

    Feb 18, 2011
    Hello :frow Welcome To BYC and Happy Holidays!
  10. Bluebee

    Bluebee Crowing

    Jul 30, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! Have a wonderful 2014! [​IMG]

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