Trying to figure out what's right for our soon to be homestead.

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by ChickieMomma2Be, Mar 2, 2014.

  1. ChickieMomma2Be

    ChickieMomma2Be Out Of The Brooder

    Would like a breed that will brood it's own young, and a good size egg (thinking lg). If we have an excess, I would like to be able to sell them off fairly easily and dress out to be a fair sized carcass for meat. I plan to use lacto-fermented feed, so that will lower my costs there, but would like to work towards being as self sufficient as possible. We are looking for a bird that will be pretty good at foraging. Will start out with a nice sized run and expand to free ranging (am thinking maybe dedicating a whole acre to 'em, total run and range). Any thoughts or suggestions will be Greatly appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    It sounds as if Australorps or Orpingtons might suit your needs.
     
  3. txcarl1258

    txcarl1258 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    X2 In my experience orpingtons seem to go broody more often than loris, but that is just my experience. Both are awesome breeds plus the orpingtons come in lots of colors!
     
  4. ChickieMomma2Be

    ChickieMomma2Be Out Of The Brooder

    Thank You for those suggestions.
    Goodness Gracious.
    Showed DH some pics of different coloration in the Orpingtons and he likes the Buff variety.
    My only question is whether or not he'll let me harvest his possible future pets. [​IMG]
    Right now we are trying to figure out how many chickens we might eat per year and how many eggs. Then we''ll have to determine the number of birds we need to start with to produce what we need. Then we'll have to figure out where to get them. [​IMG]
    Would prefer to avoid hatchery as I have read the quality varies significantly from one batch to another.
    Nothing is set in stone, though. So, we are still open to further suggestions
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
  5. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Consider a first order of several breeds that look interesting to you; it's fun, and you will start to see what works and fits in to your goals best. Hatchery birds may not be ideal representatives of their breeds, but they may also tend to lay more eggs per week, and will help get your flock started. I've lost interest in breeds that seemed ideal, and found others that have worked out much better for my farm. If you experience extreme heat in summer, heavy feathered breeds will really suffer. Mary
     
  6. txcarl1258

    txcarl1258 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You must get some buffs for your husband! It's good to keep him interested. Plus you can sneak in others with his and he will be less likely to notice! My DW saw a bantam frizzle polish on Facebook and told me we have to get some of those. I have no problem adding more chickens!:lol:
     
  7. ChickieMomma2Be

    ChickieMomma2Be Out Of The Brooder

    Thanks for the replies.
    Folly, more eggs sound nice [​IMG], but I'm going to want to be able to get some meat off of them, as well [​IMG]. Also, from what I've seen about the Hatchery flocks, they seem to be more aggressive [​IMG] and I have 2 big helpers (ages 6 & 3), who are going to want to contribute. Sorry, I forgot to mention that earlier [​IMG]. The heavier layers don't set as well and I don't want to have to buy a brooder, call me a cheapskate if you wish [​IMG] (it's true). However, I am willing to spend more on a product, if it will save money in the long run[​IMG]. Ex. I spent more money (2-3x's as much I think) buying supplies I would need to make laundry soap, rather than just buying one container of commercial product. Saved a lot of money in the long run, as a matter of fact, still using most of the same supplies I purchased a few years ago.
    The plot I'm looking to place the chickens on has lots of trees so I'm hoping that the shade along with plenty of water, will help to keep them from overheating[​IMG]? I'm also not wanting to have to start out w/ 2 or more flocks, as I'll be handling all of our livestock on my own and I don't want to get too far in over my head[​IMG]. I plan to start with about a dozen instead of 25, then after a year get some more, possibly from a diff breeder even. That way, my first batch will be ready to start setting well, when the second batch is turning 1[​IMG][​IMG].


    Carl, I'm afraid I might be doomed [​IMG], as DH already seems to be falling in love with the breed and telling me they are going to be like pets. I told him to let me get these going well and then I'll consider getting some Light Sussex as a separate flock for him later, as well. He's taking over my birds already and I haven't even gotten them, yet [​IMG].

    How many chickens would I be able to sustain on 1 acre [​IMG]. And when raising chicks for meat (later), how many do you "harvest" at a time? I know they won't be as tender as a Cornish X, but I'd rather get used to regular chicken messes, before I walk down that road [​IMG].

    Still taking suggestions on breeds, though. Give me some research to do, so I don't have to stress too much on everything I need to do before we move [​IMG].
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2014
  8. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    Hi,
    You're asking at just the right time!


    Dragonlady breeds some of the most lovely Buff Orpingtons in the country.
    They are huge, lay well,make great meat birds, and win at the shows. Just stunning birds. She
    just posted in her sig line she'll have started birds in late April-May. She doesn't sell a lot of
    birds that I know of and this will give you time to get the coop & yard all set up. Plus birds old enough to
    show at the fall shows. It also means these birds were pre selected for quality before the sale. And
    raised by an expert breeder with 50+ years in purebred poultry. I started in Light Sussex with
    started birds from a winning breeder. Waited a year for my birds. Best decision I ever made. He sent
    me started birds and it was so great. Plus you will be on track to hatch chicks from them next season.
    She calls them the "Living Sunshine Girls" and they are, they are the true color of real buff. The
    color of a shiny new gold piece. Here's her contact info :
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/u/120608/thedragonlady
    and the URL to the Heritage Large Fowl-Phase II
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/849075/heritage-large-fowl-phase-ii/4720#post_12942214
    BYC thread where she hangs out a lot.
    Best Success,
    Karen and the Light Sussex
    in western PA
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  9. ChickieMomma2Be

    ChickieMomma2Be Out Of The Brooder

    Thank You So much 3rivers, I checked out her profile and sent her a request via private msg. Those are some gorgeous buffs she has, DH was in awe of them. I guess the results are in and we are going to be getting Buff Orps. To be honest, it was one of the first breeds we started looking at when we first started to seriously consider getting a flock of our own. So, I guess we are back to where we started and it's a good thing. I'm actually glad it has taken us so long to get where we are, as I probably would have just gotten hatchery birds, before I had all this time to research everything. Crossing my fingers and praying this goes through.
     
  10. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

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    Thanks, I am in awe of them too. Ask Vickie to send you the pic of one of
    her hens sitting on the little girls lap. Too cute! I am so happy for you!
    If , someday, I can breed Light Sussex as good as her Buffs I will be a very happy camper!
    Best,
    Karen
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2014

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