Ribh's D'Coopage

Ribh

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Dec 18, 2018
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I'm struggling with Cillins foot pad.:oops:
I got it right yesterday and the white core center was showing this morning. The day before I got it wrong again and the core scabbed over.:barnie
I can see that the idea will work, but placement and security of the pad is crucial.
I'm working on it. I had a look this evening and it looks like I got it right this morning.
I think you are doing an amazing job. Cillin is a very lucky rooster!
 

BY Bob

Proprietor, Fluffy Butt Acres
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I hope so, Bob. It's not that it's an awful lot of work but I do find it a little stressful.
I am reveling in normalcy right now (knock on wood). It seems the flock has found it's stride post Aurora molt. Of course now there is a snow storm forecast for Monday/Tuesday. That will force them into confinement, their choice. That will stress the normalcy some. We shall see. But for now, all is calm.
 

Ribh

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Now you've got to admit Fudge's fluffy butt will gives the big girls you lot have a run for their money. She's quite a big lass. Size wise I think she's next in line from Fat Bird.
View attachment 2498912
Just missed the shot but half a fluffly butt as pre paid tax.:D Hurry.
View attachment 2498913

Both absolutely gorgeous! [Though I did wonder when I saw your caption. ..;):p ]
 

MaryJanet

My chickens' vet is brilliant.
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I used to weigh the chickens here on a regular basis, especially the broodies.
I was talking about it with the guy I know who keeps game fowl. I was concerned because Mini Minx had lost almost a quarter of her body weight since I last weighed her and she was sitting. She got up every day and did all the right things, ate like a horse.
My friend asked when did I weigh her. I told him the date. He said "no, no when did you weigh her." We have language problems needless to say. He speaks a very strange combination of Spanish and Morrocan and I speak Catalan and English.:rolleyes:
Eventually I came to understand what he was asking was at what point in her egg cycle had I weighed her. Well, now the penny dropped as they say and it didn't take much of a leap in intelligence to realise that if you weigh a laying hen immediately after she has laid her egg you get her true body weight. Onn the other hand, if you weigh her just before she lays an egg you get her body weight and the weight of the egg! Sitting hens won't be making eggs so any comparison unless the weight is taken just after egg laying is likely to cause alarm.
It's another one of those pearls of wisdom one doesn't see mentioned that experienced chicken keepers know about. Not quite sure what that says about some here on BYC.:hmm
So, weigh your hens straight after they've laid an egg. That will give you their true body weight.

Very roughly, between one third and one quarter of a hens food intake goes to make an egg. If a hen eats the same amount of food when she is not laying she should in theory put on weight. After all, she isn't rushing about burning off calories while she sits. So, if you measure the amount of feed a hen eats while she is laying and then measure the amount she eats while sitting you have a reasonable indication of whether she is eating enough. My game fowl friend weighs the poop. His hens are confined on their own, or with their rooster so this is easy.

The best sitters here, as in most feral and independent do a double eat. They get off their nests and head straight for the nearest food source. They eat first, then broody poop, then dust bath, poop a bit more, chat with their mates and forage.
I got told to leave feed down right until the hen gets back on the nest because Donk for example will go back to the feed point after foraging and fill up on the commercial feed. It's the second feed that seems to be the key here.
Thank you for sharing all this info Shad. I'm very grateful and have learned all of it 🙏

I noticed Mary double feeding but not Peggy or Ivy. It's possible they were doing it but it escaped my notice. I'll be keeping a look out next time they start brooding.

I don't have a suitable scale yet. I'll add it to the list.
 

Ribh

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First, this is pretty easy. The chickens do all the work.

To start the food is the issue. You have to make a decision on that. Once you move them in with the bigs, everyone goes on the same food. How old are they now? Are they 18 weeks yet? You can certainly start them on Layer food at that age. The other option is to move the bigs to chick feed. There is no issue there as they will get extra protein, not really a problem. You will need to supplement calcium somehow but my guess is that you are already doing that.

Considerations after that are mainly associated with roosting. You have enough space that they can get away during the day. Before I take away baby roosting space, I make certain that they can successfully spend all day together. So keep increasing the time they spend together until it is all day in the same run. Once that is done successfully, you can take way their coop.

This is the most trying time. They will go back to their little coop to roost and cry because it is not there or they can't get in. It's heartbreaking. I put a light in the big coop so that they find their own way there. I do have to relocate them many times. It will take a few nights until they figure it out. It is stressful for a while but then it is over.

Thanks, Bob. I don't think they are even close to 18 weeks yet. Closer to 12 I think. Sounds like I'll have to wait a bit longer. I am running both lots together during the days now without incident so that part is sorted & not a worry. And I have plenty of roosting space. Size difference is perhaps my biggest concern as the littlest are still peeping, so basically still babies.
 

BY Bob

Proprietor, Fluffy Butt Acres
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Thank you for sharing all this info Shad. I'm very grateful and have learned all of it 🙏

I noticed Mary double feeding but not Peggy or Ivy. It's possible they were doing it but it escaped my notice. I'll be keeping a look out next time they start brooding.

I don't have a suitable scale yet. I'll add it to the list.
I keep saying this but my household scale works fine. Weigh me, weigh me holding chicken, do the math. It is sensitive enough.
 

MaryJanet

My chickens' vet is brilliant.
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Dec 24, 2018
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I keep saying this but my household scale works fine. Weigh me, weigh me holding chicken, do the math. It is sensitive enough.
I don't have a human scale either. On purpose :gig

Sometimes the gp weighs me if she considers it necessary but usually she chooses to discuss diet and exercise, and give me pamphlets. She's very helpful and supportive.
 

Shadrach

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Jul 31, 2018
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Treacle about to take the hens to roost.
P1220125.JPG

Mel's eggs.
P1220127.JPG
 

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