Michigan Thread - all are welcome!

RaZ

Crowing
8 Years
Apr 20, 2011
6,691
1,962
377
Paradise, MI
It's not very expensive to rent a trencher, they make life much easier when putting fence in underground.
Funny you mention that. When I had the electricity run to the garage they brought out a Ditch Witch for the trench. In less than 10 feet, it was broken. They came back with a "commercial" grade trencher. A tracked machine as big as a bulldozer and equipped with an auxiliary back-hoe. The trencher blade cut through tree roots just fine...It was the larger than bowling ball rocks that pushed the machine to the breaking point. Took a full crew an entire day just to dig the trench to code depth.

That same rock infused, Michigan clay bent my 8" post hole auger when I moved the coop to where is now sits. There is no way I could bury hardware cloth for the run. So I ended up with 2 feet of HW cloth laid on the the flat on either side of the vertical fence. And it's why my fence posts are not spaced equally apart. The posts are set where the auger could actually penetrate the soil. Also why the sides of the run are not in a straight line. :lol: Good luck to any predator that thinks it can dig under the fence. It has held fine for the past 2 years and I keep adding more rocks on top of the flat HW cloth.

Ya gotta make due with the terrain that ya gots. Predator proofing can be a difficult chore but is necessary.
 

1muttsfan

Free Ranging
9 Years
Mar 26, 2011
21,049
6,945
657
Upper Peninsula Michigan
Next time see if you can find someone with a big tractor with a bucket. Get metal pound-in T-posts, and use the bucket to drive them in. The metal posts work around the rocks better (although you still have some posts that are out of place). Saves an enormous amount of work - we put in about 120 T-posts in the time it took to dig 16 holes for the cedar corner posts. The soil here has the weirdest tight-packed jagged dolomite rocks in clay, some of them as big as a pony. When you hit one of them you just have to move over.
 

RaZ

Crowing
8 Years
Apr 20, 2011
6,691
1,962
377
Paradise, MI
T-posts are expensive and I'm a cheap bast...
Anyway, I had all of those posts that I got from the mill scraps. Slabs and posts enough to last for the last 2 years. Plus pallets galore. I'm either a good recycle guy or I'm a junkman. :lol: Chickens are happy and secure. That's all thatmatters.
 

electrycmonk

Songster
Aug 8, 2019
397
1,453
187
caught in 'Denton vortex', Tx
My Coop
My Coop
Next time see if you can find someone with a big tractor with a bucket. Get metal pound-in T-posts, and use the bucket to drive them in. The metal posts work around the rocks better (although you still have some posts that are out of place). Saves an enormous amount of work - we put in about 120 T-posts in the time it took to dig 16 holes for the cedar corner posts. The soil here has the weirdest tight-packed jagged dolomite rocks in clay, some of them as big as a pony. When you hit one of them you just have to move over.
@RaZ I Sooooo, feel your pain regarding subterranean rocks! As the coop build thread I made shows some of the rock issue now that I finally have a backhoe for the lil' tractor..... What took about 6 odd hours would of taken me (before the knee surgery) 2+ weeks of 6-8hr days with the shovels, 16lb sledge, and the 20lb 6' Spike, rakes and wheelbarrows..... The picture with my foot on the stone for a scale of reference, it's easily 300+lbsIMG_20200210_163556350.jpg

This pile is the relocation of the stones on the left, mud/stone mix middle, good topsoil/black clay on the right

IMG_20200210_162844116.jpg
 

RaZ

Crowing
8 Years
Apr 20, 2011
6,691
1,962
377
Paradise, MI
When I got the permit to build my garage, the building inspector said that since I was on a sandy area I only had to trench down 2 feet for the foundation. The contractor brought his big Cat excavator with a ditch bucket. At less than 12 inches down he hit clay and rock so dense that the machine couldn't handle it. He had to come back with a narrow toothed bucket and still had a heck of a time getting down to code depth. It took a week to excavate the trench. None of the local guys could believe the clay and rocks here. Even the USGS survey said that this area was all sand.
15 feet south of the garage IS all sand and there is a big sand pit at the east end of my property. In the middle of my plot is a limestone sink hole. 500 feet north of that is a limestone quarry that was abandoned 100 years ago. There was even a rail line that ran a 1/4 mile out to the lake The wooden pier is long gone but there are still rails out in the water. The whole area is a geological anomaly.

It figures that the land I live on doesn't follow the conventional "rules". :lau
Edited for spelling.
 
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RaZ

Crowing
8 Years
Apr 20, 2011
6,691
1,962
377
Paradise, MI
I just received an e-mail from TSC announcing that Chick Days is close. I'm sure you all were aware of that. Now I have to decide if I want to raise some fresh chicks or wait for the Imlay City sale later this spring.

Adding to this is the desire to raise some pheasants for my habitat restoration. The USDA biologist who oversees pheasant habitat restoration is coming out for a site survey on Thursday. If I can get a grant to help with the cost then the chick rearing will be decided for this year. Guess I better start making a few plans and contingencies.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
74,756
81,604
1,607
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
Am really ambivalent about hatching/buying new chicks this year.
Chickeneering fire is burning low, time will tell if it's going to go completely out or not.
 
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