Making Some Changes Around Here...DONE!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by speckledhen, Nov 15, 2009.

  1. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    With my DH's health, as well as my own, becoming more of a consideration in recent times, we will be changing up some of the flocks here. Hauling water and food for all those separate enclosures can get to be alot, depending on how DH's back is doing (he has degenerative disc disease and most discs are already gone).

    As of now, I have four coops being used by four different groups. I removed Dutch from the main flock after he decided he needed to rush me from time to time and put him in the little Firetower coop with three BR girls. So, I have that group, the main layers, the BBS Orps and the Delawares. I will be rearranging so there are only three coops to maintain, then eventually, when my blue Orp rooster, Suede, passes on, that coop will be vacated and whatever girls he has will go into the main laying flock.

    The Delawares with Isaac and five girls will go to the main coop, so Ike will have 24 girls instead of just 5. The Del eggs are pretty easy to distinguish most of the time so no issues there if I wanted pure Dels. There is one Del pullet who is running with the layers right now, so in that group, there will be Ike, six Del girls plus all the rest of the mixed laying flock except for Shadow, my only banty. I've moved my huge RIR/Buff Orp hen, Meg, back in with Suede since we lost Skye last week and he was left with just two hens.

    Dutch will move into the Delaware coop with all five BR hens, four BBS Ameraucanas and Shadow. Dutch never pays attention to Shadow so she will be safe with them. In that coop, then, I can collect eggs for pure BRs or barred Easter Eggers. The Delaware coop has 55 sf, plus storage for feed, so there is plenty of room for all of those girls and Dutch. We will, however, expand the pen somewhat.

    In the end, the main laying flock, led by Isaac, will include six Delaware hens; the BR coop, led by Dutch, will include 4 Ameraucana hens for barred EEs. That will save on shavings, a big cost around here, as well as maintenance. Then, the little Firetower will be freed up to use as a grow-out coop or broody coop, or hospital coop. And, in the future, Suede's coop will revert to the same type thing, to be used in temporary arrangements rather than permanent ones.

    I was a bit concerned about Isaac with that many girls, but I'm told that a Delaware rooster can handle that many by himself just fine.

  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    I'm sorry you have to make those changes based on health considerations Cynthia, but I completely understand. I shouldn't be adding to my flock and getting a new puppy besides, yet somedays the animals are what gets me out of bed and moving.
    I'm still wishing nothing but the best for y'all. [​IMG]
  3. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    Smart move particuarly the winters coming on! Sometimes we have to look ourselves and our capablities and reaction time (to a fall or ducking) would be alot slower and we would get hurt more often than when we were younger.

    I know in time, you will consoliate your flock down to one or two and have the pleasure of the eggs and occasionally having chicks now and then.

    Way to go, Cyn!
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I have some quilt projects I want to work on this winter, so I think this is a good time to do that. I actually considered selling Isaac and a couple of his ladies, but if I make him the main flock rooster, I don't have to do that right now. I still want my girls and want to hatch chicks with my broodies in the spring, but for now, this may help out.
  5. kcravey

    kcravey In the Brooder

    Nov 10, 2009
    East Texas
    My mother just went through this also. She had too many coops to maintain. She watched lonesome dove all weekend and then decided all slackers were going to the freezer. Even her beloved ones she had had for years. Any one not laying went to the freezer. She actually felt better about it and now wants to work on colored eggs only.

  6. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    It feels good to reorganize and rethink things! Sometimes, situations change and the plans have to change with them. I've always said, "All chicken plans subject to change". I'd never give up my birds, but over the last year, I have scaled down some, some were sold and some passed on. And now, it's time to tweak things a bit more.
  7. hcammack

    hcammack Crowing

    Oct 5, 2007
    I love the feeling of reorganizing and refocusing. It sounds like a good plan to me.
  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I know that I will probably lose some of my older girls with all the internal laying crud I've had to deal with, so there will be openings in the main flock as well as the BR flock in the future, so I'll have some "room to groove", as Rachael Ray says. One day, I may even change out some of them to bantams since most are pets anyway, and we adore Shadow. I can possibly see some Porcelain D'uccles or bantam Salmon Favs in our future. Less room and feed needed.
  9. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens


    Adorable chicken to fall under the spell of! We have a little Mille - such an adorable personality and quite the conversationalist.

  10. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I'm totally in love with the porcelain color in the d'uccles. I've seen them and they are just lovely.

    Tomorrow, I will let out the main layers and the Delawares so they can meet out on range and hash it out before being locked in a coop/pen together. The older ladies will want to kick some Delaware rooster butt, I know, but hopefully, they'll work it all out quickly. Guess I'll remove the ones who will be going to the BR coop with Dutch, put them in with him, then when the entire main flock is locked in together, Dutch and his ladies will move into the former Delaware coop. Should be a wild day tomorrow! Not really looking forward to the chaos, but has to be done.

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