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Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by Wisher1000, Jul 28, 2012.
I would make good use of that recipe you posted.
Yes - and at five litters a year (breeding for production) and each of those female pups being able to start being bread at 4-7 months of age and also then beginning to produce those same five litters a year they are quite efficient for production. The advantage of the minimal space required and the efficiency with which they convert food to consumable meat (twice the rate of cattle - I realize it seems an odd comparison, but it is one used within the industry) makes them a prime animal to be raised for a source of protein in areas where there is not the means to produce large grass eating animals either due to space, economics, etc. It isn't about outright numbers, but how those numbers compare to similar evaluations of other species also able to be grown for consumption that makes one more or less "prolific" than others from a production standpoint. Environmentally they are much lower impact than larger protein sources.
Heifer International even uses guinea pigs as part of their programs to bring sustainable food sources to poverty stricken communities.
SCG to bad guineas don't eat mites - they would be self cleaning
I was thinking the same thing. Wonder what it is about mites that guineas won't eat them? I'm going to have to look that up at some point today.
I'm in the midst of a couple of really bad days. I don't need sympathy because I apparently didn't safeguard things well enough. Two nights ago raccoons pried a siding board off of one of the breeder houses and killed all but one hen. I'm trying to nurse her back to health.
Yesterday, I made sure everything was secure but when I went out at dusk, there was a dead cockerel in one of the open coops when I was closing it up. I don't know if the raccoons squeezed through the 2" space between the door and concrete floor or if they were hiding in the building when I closed up but this morning, every other cockerel was dead and all but 3 pullets.
When I checked the other flocks, I found all of another flock dead. Again, they pried siding boards off of the building. This is a new well built building.
In 2 nights I lost 13 mature or breeding age hens and pullets as well as 8 cockerels and cocks.
I had set 2 traps last night and they were ignored.
I guarantee I will be going over each coop with a fine tooth comb and securing anything that isn't raccoon proof.
I'm down to 19 layers from 32 and 2 roosters from 10. Only 7 of the layers are mature hens and 3 are broody. The rest just started laying so the eggs are too small to incubate.
I do have some chicks and a couple eggs in the incubator but this is my worst 2 night loss in my life.
Last year the raccoons broke into my cellar and killed 10 baby chicks.
I have my work cut out for me today to close off every tiny hole.
I guarantee the raccoons will make a good grill to provide protein to the remaining chickens.
I understand predation but I don't really get killing 21 adult birds in 2 nights and only take the head, neck and crop. None of the rest of the bird was eaten. Perhaps they were teaching cubs to kill. What a waste. This is one of the worst days of my chicken keeping life.
You don't deserve that.. Prying off siding? Can't prevent that. Go get revenge!
Raccoons are terrible!
I hope you figure out how to keep them from killing more.
I had a coon problem once and couldn't trap them. My great uncle used to trap for years and he told me to get some pork cracklings an almost burn them in the skillet. I did and trapped out 16 coons in 3 days. Maybe that can help you catch them. Also wear rubber gloves to handle the traps and bait so your scent isn't on anything. Again sorry for your losses I know it can be hard on you mentally.
I don't have a building now that I trust to be secure, including my house. Other than the cellar, where I incubate, I have 9 housing units.
Trying to look on the positive side, I can do a complete overhaul of each building since I have space now. I can work on the automatic doors and trap nests. I think I'll put high security hasps on all the doors with padlocks.
It's hard because I've lost all my oldest breeders. The two breeding age cockerels are under a year old. Again, on the positive side, one was the largest male and the other is the best example of the breed.
my smell is on everything around here, even the places they pry.
I have a hav-a-hart live trap that only catches cubs and a dog proof leg trap that works well for adult coons. I think I'm going to invest in a couple more of those. Hell, I may even acquire a taste for raccoon. I know my chickens relish the flavor.
I'm using peanut butter in the hav-a-hart and canned mackerel in the leg trap. I'm going to make sure every building that still has chickens in fort knox today and make sure that all grain and feed are out of reach so the traps are the only food available. However, I have lots of fruits and vegetables ripening so they still have stuff to eat, not to mention all the neighbors' garbage cans.
I have a coon problem every year. I hadn't lost a bird in over a year to anything but the neighbor's dogs. I just have to be more diligent.
I'm kind of at a loss to decide what to do with so many chicken carcasses. The smell of death around here is pervasive.
I looked out my front window this morning and saw this. Had to grab the camera and get a photo from my front porch. There is a bird flying across in the distance.